01 Cavalier 2.2L overheating - any suggestions

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Snobal, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. OK... So I get a call Saturday that this thing is overheating. Opened the air vent on the heater line and added almost a gallon of coolant. Problem fixed right? Wrong!! The guage goes all the way to hot and if you get any heat out of the vents, it's only out of the drivers' side of the car. Will not overheat AS FAST if you keep the rpms around 1500. Pulled the thermostat Saturday and it looked ok but replaced it anyway. Same problem. Pulled the water pump tonight and it appears to be in good shape. Putting new one in tomorrow anyway just in case. Turned air compressor down to about 15psi and blew air through all lines and nothing appears to be plugged anywhere. No coolant in oil and no smoke out exhaust. Also does not appear to be building pressure in the system above normal (not blowing coolant out of overflow). Can not see any obvious leaks in the system.

    Has anyone had this problem? Any suggestions on what it could be? My truck is down right now taking up garage space and I'd like to get this fixed so they can have their car back and I can stop working in the 10 - 20 degree weather. Thanks in advance for your replies!
  2. rolland

    rolland Fishing Noob

    im no pro man, you will probibly get better responces as the real mechanics get on but im with ya seems like its narrowed down to water pump. Only other thought that I had, are you sure they didnt add water instead of antifreeze in the summer sometime. I have seen people do this and you could have water froze up somewhere bottle necking ya keeping it from circulating.

  3. Sounds to me like you do not have all the air out of the system.The first thing look for when the heater does not work is low coolant. You may have to supply vacuum to the small hose going to the top of the coolant resivoir. Mike
  4. sporty

    sporty OGF Team - Charter Member

    I agree with air in the system. Worked on a BMW a while back. After getting everything fixed it was still overheating. Ended up being air in the system. I had never run across anything like that before. Then again never worked on one of those "sealed" systems.
  5. FOSR

    FOSR name of Alex

    If this was a Subaru 2.5 I'd say head gasket, they fail by blowing exhaust into the coolant and the bubbles go past the temp sensor so it looks like overheating.
  6. Still sounds like a head gasket. If you have cool blowing out of the cap its gettin comp in the cool system. I wouldnt be surprized if it locks up after she sits. Water will fill a cly and hydo lock it. Now its burning it out. Steam! Too much water and itll start to miss and gradually get worse.
  7. FOSR

    FOSR name of Alex

    This is really strange, I don't remember you borrowing my 1980 Phoenix but you must have because that's what it was doing...
  8. I agree it does sound like head gasket. Better get it in and get fixed before she ceases.
  9. Only other thing it could be is a plugged rad. And by the way I had a 80 Pheonix. Did the same thing.
  10. a pressure test would tell you what is wrong
  11. the same thing happend to my truck just recently and the reason was what rolland suggested. i had some water in with my coolant.
  12. Does the cooling fan on the radiator ever come on ?
  13. the GM L-body cars run hotter than other cars. my fan don't come on until my temp reaches 3/4's. i have an 1988 chevy beretta. and my friends 2000 malibu does the same thing. just start checking the little stuff 1st. a head gasket repair should be your last resort.
  14. cooling fan will come on. i just got it back together last night but have not tried starting it yet. letting it sit to see if any more air surfaces. it DOES NOT have the typical signs of a head gasket (coolant out exhaust, extreme pressure in system, etc.) so i'm thinking water pump or air in the system just dont know where the coolant went to begin with. maybe water pump problem and coolant vaporized in engine?
  15. Lewis


    Have you pulled the oil dipstick to see if you have water in the oil?
    If so...definate head gasket.

    It still possible you could have air in the system..
    You might have to pull the t stat housing and fill the engine block with coolant.
  16. Have you checked the floors for anti?Maybe heater core?
  17. If you lost water it went somewhere. It just doesnt evap. Either burnt it,leaked it or got in the oil. There are no other choises. You better start after you know its full,with a pressure test. If it dont hold you have a leak. Just got to find it. By taking the heater hose off the top of the manifold should be enough to get any trapped air out.
  18. Checked the oil already and no foam. Also pulled all 4 plugs and reached into cylinders with 1/4drive extension and it came out dry on all 4. Can not fill block through t-stat housing as it sits vertical on this car not horizontal like the older cars.

    The floor I have not checked considering there was a large drink spilled on it and the weather hasn't been warm enough to dry that up. I will have to double check this car but most have a drain through the firewall now so that your floor doesn't get wet.

    Take the heater hose off the top manifold? Which hose would that be? lol Both heater hoses come in and go to metal coolant pipes and then to various locations. Closest thing I have seen to a hose on the intake is the metal pipe that goes into the end of the head! It has a vent screw in the one heater line but it doesn't seem to be the highest point of the system so I'm not sure how they expect it to get all the air out.
  19. sporty

    sporty OGF Team - Charter Member

    I forgot I had the air problem in my truck too. In the BMW there was actually a bleeder valve near the fill cap. In my truck just an overflow tank (I know where my coolant went). I had to get it hot then take the cap off while it cooled. It took a few times and the temps flucuated for a couple days until all the air got out.
  20. All ya need is a highpoint to bleed the air off. Most fill/recovery bottles are vented. Some of them werent worth a darn. Some of them you had to start/shut-off and fill 6x. Crazy! Just by removing the upper rad/stat hose should be enough to bleed it.