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Cooling Systems -- Problems & Solutions (Radiator, Fan, etc)



  • 37453745 Posts: 152
    For low level coolant light being always on even if coolant level is correct.

    Remove coolant recovery tank and flush it with water. A garden hose will do. Then shake the recovery tank. The sensor is a magnet in a float that closes a magnetic switch. The float tends to stick in its guides after some years. Shaking the tank will free it up.
  • Hi. New here, completely stumped and looking for advise... replaced radiator & temp sensor on '94 Olds C/S. Now neither cooling fan will come on. Checked fuse & relay w/ test light - both lit so.....What'd I do wrong?
  • mstar67mstar67 Posts: 3
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Wild guess - blown head gasket.

    If your oil is milky, foamy, or overfilled - these are indications of coolant entering the oil system. Possibly from a blown head gasket.

    Which is a severe problem.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,987
    Also could be a clogged radiator.

    SLOW overheat --- usually air circulation problem (fan, fan shroud, electric cooling fan, low coolant)

    FAST overheat ---- usually coolant circulation problem or blown head gasket, cracked head, etc.

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  • czookczook Posts: 2
    :confuse: Please help me...I'm scratching my head on this one. My 98 Grand Caravan has a code that keeps telling me that there's a problem with the lower radiator fan circuit relay. We replaced it and it was fine for about a month then the same code came up. My husband has cleaned the contacts but it only "fixes" the problem for a few days. The car overheats and the A/C quits working just before it overheats. Please help...Summer is upon us and I can't drive in 100+ heat without A/C. Thanks. :confuse:
  • kappajenkappajen Posts: 11
    Hello. I have a 96 Plymouth Neon with about 190,000 miles and have noticed that when driving at high speeds (65-70) for and extended period of time my temperature gauge starts to creep up. I turn the heat on immediately (rather not wait to see how high it goes) and leave it on until it regulates itself. It goes back down to normal (about the middle). It doesn't do this when I'm driving in stop and go and I can hear the fan kick on if I'm sitting. I'm not sure what the cause could be. Six months ago I had a new water pump, timing belt and thermostat put on. Anyone's thoughts would be greatly apperciated. I've put about $2000 into this car (I's a neon) so I really don't want to have to dump anything more into it unless it needs it. Thanks so much.
  • koleykoley Posts: 4
    I don't have the answer for you, but I am having similar problems. I have a '95 Neon with 90,000 miles. When I go around a sharp corner to the left, my temperature gauge pegs and a chime goes off. As soon as I straighten out, the temperature goes back to normal (takes about 10 seconds). This is kind of scary because my car is beeping at me like it's going to self destruct, but the engine shows no sign of actually over heating. Is it physically possible for an engine to go from overheating stage to normal temperature in 10 seconds? If not, I must have some kind of electrical problem.
  • I have a 1999 Plymouth Grand Voyager and has numerous problems with the relay switch which keeps burning out. I was told it might be a shortage in the cooling fan assembly. I had it replaced but now it has gone back out again and the fan is not working. The van keeps running hot without the fan. The fan will usually run a couple of weeks then shorts out. Any suggestions what might be the problem?
  • 90bronc90bronc Posts: 7
    Our van runs fine until we turn on the A/C. The temp goes upalmost to redline. If I turn the A/C off the temp goes down to normal. This is a dual electric fan model. could the problem be in the coolant temp sensor? or something else? pls help
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,987
    It's possible that only one fan is working, and the AC fan is not.

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  • O my gosh...did you get an answer? Mine is doing the SAME thing. If I drive over 50mph the temp gage climbs and the AC shuts off. As soon as I stop the car and idle....back to normal and the AC works. It's really wierd!
  • 90bronc90bronc Posts: 7
    Could be one fan....I don't klnow if the A/C fan is on the psgr side or drvr side....I changed the temp sensor..I looked for a relay in the fuse box and didn't see a relay for the RAD FAN...there is a 40 amp fuse for RAD FAN and it is good...guess I'll have to put 12 volts to the fans to determine if one is bad....

    also, would it be possible to wire the fans in paralell to have them both run at the same time or would it blow a fuse and/or cause other problems?

    or could it be a bad switch somewhere?
    1997 Dodge Caravan 4 cyl (2.4)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,987
    Well you should be able to observe the fan operation. The AC fan will go on as soon as you engage the AC button or switch or whatever I THINK...the other fan will go on only when the engine reaches a certain you'd just let it idle and wait for it to go on so you can check operation. If your engine gets hotter and hotter at idle and no fan goes on, then you must have a sensor or relay issue.

    Yes you could add 12V to the fans to see if they are working. They rarely fail, but it can happen.

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  • czookczook Posts: 2
    on our 98 Dodge Caravan, we found the relay to the RAD FAN way up high on the driver side of the Radiator. See if you can find it there.
  • cranky18cranky18 Posts: 1
    My van has been overheating for some time now. At first, the fan was locking up and burning up the fuse. If I unstuck it and replaced the fuse it would be fine. I finally had to replace the fan motor. It was O.K. for a while then it started again. It would overheat, usually in stop and go traffic, I could pull over and shut the engine off, start it again, and it would cool down and be O.K even in more stop and go traffic. Since then, I have replaced the waterpump and thermostat. I checked the relays for the fan control and they seem o.k. too. I took it to a mechanic and they said the fan (low speed and high speed were turning on at about 2 degrees higher than specification and that there was a 30 degree difference in temperature from top to bottom. They said one or both of these things might be causing the problem. I googled this problem and did not really find anything. The only thing is the fact that it will overheat and then I can stop and it is O.K. even under the same conditions. What about the bottom hose collapsing? Is it possible that it could collapse then I stop and it "uncollapses"? :cry:
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    Has the radiator been checked? On an 11 year old car it's possible the radiator is clogged.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,987
    A collapsed hose only occurs at high engine speed.

    Clogged radiator is a good guess. Have you checked or water in the oil or combustion gases in the coolant?

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  • dgrasserdgrasser Posts: 12
    My 1998 Grand Caravan is doing the same. I just replaced the water pump last Fall and I can tell that it is circulating. The radiator w/o the fans (2 of them)running is enough to cool the engine until I turn the air on, then the extra heat causes the radiator to overheat and anti-freeze overflows.
    I also checked the 40 AMP fan(s) fuse and it is okay.

    With the vehicle off (the ignition is off, no key in it), I physically reached down and turned the fans (make sure you do this when the engine is cool as you could get burned on hot parts. Also, some vehicles fans go on even when the key is off). The fan blade/motor on the passenger side is seized up and the fan blade/motor on the driver's side spins freely.

    Not sure, but I am guessing that the good fan is tied in electrically with the other one, so it won't go on either.

    Anyway, looks like I need at least one fan motor. Not sure if they sell them separate or not. I checked my Haynes Repair Manual and it looks like it will be kind of a pain to remove the entire fan fixture, but do-able.
  • mps3817mps3817 Posts: 4
    I own a 1997 Regal with 180,000. The car started having heat issues about 12 months ago. IT was always overheating whern hot. Since then the heads have been changed, radiator changed twice, heater core once and a major flush. The cvar run at 3/4 hot all the time . IT seems trhat the system is getting clogged all the time. The red antifreeze looks like it is solififying. My insurance is writing off the car. Has anyone heardof this problem before?
  • steve248steve248 Posts: 1
    I have a good info, found on other web site.

    First, I had similar symptom: a '97 Town & Country. Starting 6/06, when A/C on, my overheat is slightly different - The temp on dashboard shows it is OK if car moves with smooth traffic. In stop-and-go, such as traffic light, I can see the steam. Or if the car was moving OK w/o overheat, pull to my garage and turn off the engine, I can hear the water boiling and steam comes out. I replaced the thermastat, and back-flush the cooling system. Add coolant to 40%. When engine is off, no more steam, but the coolant comes out the rad cap.

    2. Cause A: I found this info a web site

    Partial quote from this web. Some '98 has this problem:

    "There was a recall on your Caravan for this very problem. To correct this condition, the radiator fan relay must be replaced and the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) must be reprogrammed (flashed). The dealer will do this free of charge."

    3. Cause B:

    Below is the quote

    A. That's not a recall, that was a Technical Service Bulletin. And, sorry to say, it does not apply to your vehicle. The one that does apply to your vehicle is:

    NO: 08-34-96
    GROUP: Electrical
    DATE: Oct. 25, 1996
    Radiator Fan Relay Operation
    1996 - 1997 Town & Country/Caravan/Voyager 1996 - 1997 Chrysler Voyager (International Market)


    Conditions related to the radiator fan relay may result in the radiator fans not turning "ON" or not turning "OFF" as designed.

    The screws that mount the relay to the left front frame rail may break causing the relay to overheat and turn off because it no longer has heat sinking capability to the frame rail.

    If broken radiator fan relay screws are found, they must be replaced with revised screw P/N 06035202. Also, the relay may have been damaged because of the overheating (but may still be functioning) caused by the lack of heat sinking and should be replaced.

    Some vehicles may have an intermittent interference condition between the radiator fan blade(s) and the fan shroud that causes a high current draw that will fail the radiator fan relay.

    The relay can fail in an open condition preventing the fan motors from running and causing the engine to overheat. The relay can fail in a closed condition causing the radiator fans to continue to run with the ignition switch turned "OFF".

    If a failed radiator fan relay is found, it must be replaced with revised relay P/N 04886288AA AND screws P/N 06035202. Revised relay P/N 04886288AA has a higher current capacity that is able to handle the extra current draw related to the intermittent radiator fan/shroud interference.

    A number of vehicles may have corrosion develop in the radiator fan relay connector. On vehicles with this condition, the radiator fan relay connector should be replaced using pigtail service package P/N 04897034AA
  • dgrasserdgrasser Posts: 12
    Thanks for all the great info. I contacted the local Dodge dealer and provided my VIN number. They have a record of the recalls that were done on my van, including the relay, however, he said it may have gone bad again. For my 1998 Grand Caravan, this was a recall.
    Also, tonight I applied 12 volts to each fan and indeed the passenger side fan motor bearings are shot.
    This doesn't explain why the other one doesn't run though.
    After reading your info., I thought that perhaps the relay was "stuck" on causing one fan to prematurely wear out, but that would mean the other one should still be running.
    Anyway, I am going to have the dealer look at it and see if I can get the relay replaced again.
    I still haven't figured out if I can replace on of the fans/motors without taking the entire fan shroud out.
    Hopefully, I can get by with just replacing the one fan motors. It looks like it is mounted with heavy duty rivets though, so I'm not sure.
    Thanks again.
  • kappajenkappajen Posts: 11
    Hi! I need some help. I have a 96 Plymouth Neon and a friend believes that there is an air bubble. When I drive for a while at about 65 to 70 the temp gauge starts to go up and I turn the heat on (I know!) and then it goes back to normal. I've never watched to see how high it goes! To scary!! But I was wondering if anyone had any information regarding the proper procedure to bleed the air bubble out. Haven't been able to find a repair manual yet, so any help would be much appreciated! It's been so hot all over the place and i hate driving with the heat on!! Thanks again! :)
  • dhackdhack Posts: 7
    i have a 92 acura legend and it started overheating. so i changed out the radiator cuz it cracked one day when it was overheating, put new hoses and thermostat in it. still didnt stop it from getting hot. I found out that it was the head gasket leaking, had to get a new motor, found one on ebay and to get it down here and having it put in cost me around $1500. so pray that its not the same with your vehicle
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 52,987
    With a Neon of that age, you have to look for a bad head gasket...a chronic problem with these cars and a possible cause of your distress.

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  • 1996219962 Posts: 2
    Did the continuous running cooling fan get fixed? My 1997 van is doing the same thing. Engine is off but radaitor cooling fan stays running. Help?
  • 1996219962 Posts: 2
    My 1997 Plymouth Voyager radiator cooling fan runs with engine off. I pulled the fuse to save battery but with fuse in the fan will not stop running.
  • I have a 98 Chrysler Town & Country AWD that is overheating at highway speeds when the a/c is on and only in the summer. I turned the a/c off and temp goes to normal. If I turn a/c back on sometimes it will overheat. I replaced thermosat a year ago and both fans work. I saw the water in the radiator with particles. Any help would be appreciated. If I need to replace radiator, do I need to bleed the air out and how?
  • fkovfkov Posts: 1
    I am having similar problems with our 1996 Dodge Grand Caravan ES with 3.3L engine with 170K miles. Could you tell me if this recall extends to this vehicle?

    Thanks, Fred
  • randy09randy09 Posts: 1
    hey i got a 98 Voyager with the same thing. but witch one is the fan relay? what is it called?
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