Chevrolet Cavalier (Coolant Bubble)

Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
  • CHEVROLET CAVALIER
I have a 1998 Chevy Cavalier, 4-Cylinder w/ 140,000 miles. It runs great and I recieved a tune up 4 months ago. About a month ago I drove my car about 3 miles, was siting at a long red light and I heard the coolant bubbling and my car was running hot. I parked it, 10 mins later it was fine when I drove it home. Now it seems fine when I drive it but if I sit too long in traffic or in a drive through it can run hot. The only time it seems to stay normal longer is if I have on the heater. There is plenty of coolant in the car and oil. What can be the problem? :D
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Monday, January 15th, 2007 AT 6:57 PM

12 Replies

Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
  • EXPERT
When your at idle, does your cooling fan come on?
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Monday, January 15th, 2007 AT 7:07 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
Sometimes I hear it come on, and sometimes I don't. It's hard to tell because most of the time it stays below the half mark while driving because it's getting good air flow. But when it does get to hot, I do not think the fan does come on. If the fan has gone out, about how much should I look forward to spending to have it repaired? And how could I tell the difference between a bad thermostat, and a bad water pump:D
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Tuesday, January 16th, 2007 AT 7:52 AM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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If your willing to check a few things, maybe you can do this yourself.

Let the car set at idle, with the hood open, watch the gauge, when it gets up to about 220 degrees the fan should come on. Wait until it does, but not to the point that the gauge goes into the red zone. Did it come on? If the fan is not coming on, that is probably the reason for the overheating.
Is this 2.2 or a 2.4 motor.
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Tuesday, January 16th, 2007 AT 6:23 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
I beileve that the fan is not coming on. I have listened for it and only heard it once. And today, not at all. Do you have any estimate advice? And as long as I am not allowing my car to overheat, is there any extra damage that I could have caused still driving it? :D
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Wednesday, January 17th, 2007 AT 7:48 AM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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Yes you can cause damage. Sorry for being blunt but I can't work with what you believe, try what I said. This may not be an expensive thing if it is attended to now.
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Wednesday, January 17th, 2007 AT 1:02 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
I performed the test, and I heard the click for the fan but not the usual sound and my car idled down a bit. It is not as loud as I am used to hearing. It is as if something is blocking it or like a belt is loose? It seems to be coming on or wanting to come on, but something is not right about it. Which is why I thought that it was coming on while I was driving because I heard the click and my car idled down. While it was in park and just idling, it seemed to stay cool. When I drove it normaly and parked it and let it idle it went to hot. :)
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Thursday, January 18th, 2007 AT 7:10 AM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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So you are out of the car with the hood open, the engine is running, the temperature is coming up.

So the fan in the front of the car is not coming on?

The click is probably the a/c compressor cycling.
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Thursday, January 18th, 2007 AT 4:40 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
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The the fan is coming on, but the temperature is still rising. Although, the fan does not sound normal.
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Thursday, January 18th, 2007 AT 5:46 PM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
  • EXPERT
Need a little more info about the fan not sounding right. At least it is working. At this point I would pressure test the cap to make sure it is in spec. And try a thermostat.
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Thursday, January 18th, 2007 AT 6:23 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
Thanks for all of your help! If I were to make a donation, would it go to you? Or does it go into a pot for everyone? :D
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Monday, January 22nd, 2007 AT 12:29 PM
Tiny
SERVICE WRITER
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It goes to everyone is how I understand it. All the guys work pretty hard at helping and it's only fair to split it even. Thanks for asking!

Most importantly- How did you make out!
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Monday, January 22nd, 2007 AT 4:46 PM
Tiny
LKILPATRICK78
  • MEMBER
From the tests that were run, and because there was pressure in the hose near the radiator, it has to be the thermostat. I will be getting it fixed this week. I can't fix it myself. But I try to learn as much as possible to understand how it all works. :Wink:
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Monday, January 22nd, 2007 AT 5:44 PM

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