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Old 10-09-2012, 03:02 AM   #1
gdf_sl1
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Default solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

sorry if this is the wrong area.... been trolling the website for weeks now working on a high idle issue, 2000 sl1 123k miles. 5spd. the high idle is solved but now it says i am over heating even tho i am not, and I have no hot air blowing out my vents. I am a complete rookie/novice at auto repair. Everything that ive done so far, listed below, i learned here in the forums. You all are doing a great job sharing info and knowledge and experiences.... but anyway here you go:

9/15/12 ects replaced (flat brass peice), throttle body cleaned IAC cleaned, Egr cleaned
still high idle, 2k

9/22/12 IAC replaced (dura), EGR replaced (junkyard) idle 2500, engine raced shifting gears +3-500 rpm

9/29/12 sprayed starting fluid around the intake manifold gasket, immediately lowered rpms. so for the next week, I studied my chiltons book, richpins video and a post in the tech forum of the how to replace the intake gasket (Great work on that how-to, BTW)

10/6/12 replaced the intake manifold gasket and thermostat. (coolant was drained so replacing the thermostat seemed like a good idea) Success!! upon completion starts up at 13-1500 rpm, once warm i have a nice quiet 800!! i am truly ecstatic! but during the test drive around the neighborhood, i noticed she was running a bit warm, over half on the gauge. and when i pulled into my driveway, the low coolant light popped on. I was out of dexcool so i used some remaining prestone green stuff i had on the shelf. thought i was good....

10/8/12: first REAL road test drive, heading to work after about 3 miles, temp gauge is nearly in the red, I have zero heat and im freaking out... luckily its only a 5 mile drive. made it ok but im left wondering what did i miss?
.... did i buy a faulty thermostat?
..... can you mix dexcool with the green stuff?
..... i squeezed the upper/lower coolant hoses thinking an air pocket or a clog?
or am i just completely missing something? any help is appreciated
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Old 10-09-2012, 07:55 AM   #2
DonP
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

Welcome

Above half on the temp gauge is a bit high, should sit at 3/8 once warmed up. You may have installed a bad T-stat or somehow obstructed its full opening, though that would be a bit unusual. What make/model t-stat did you use?

Temp gauge will slowly climb to fan turn-on point if the engine is running but the car is not moving and A/C is off. Fan turn on is a bit under 3/4 scale on the '96 and newer models. Is the radiator fan working?

Should NOT mix the green stuff and dexcool. Best bet is the yellow universal stuff. Arguably best to drain and flush as soon as you can.

You heater core may be clogged, when you drain and flush the green/orange mix you have now, try back flush the heater core too.
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:52 AM   #3
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

Other than buying parts off the internet or heading to the junkyard, my part buying options are limited to autozone....anywhere else is a 25-30 minute drive one way. i bought a duralast Tstat 15178.

The cooling fan does come on when the guage is around 3/4. it will also continue to run after the car is shut off. If you give it a minute, start it back up and off again, the fan will then turn itself off.

heading out now to put the old tstat in and drain the mixed fluid. stopped and bought 3 bottles of dexcool on my way home last night before i even posted.

heres me being a lazy noob and not searching: how do you drain the heater core? i thought it was on the inside of the firewall under the dash....
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Old 10-09-2012, 12:21 PM   #4
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

i ended up reading on the heater core, so please disregard that question.

so drained the fluid, replaced with old thermostat flushed and refilled. test drive showed high temp, idiot light came on, yet I was able to touch the engine, actually able to hold my hand on it...it wasnt hot to the touch at all! bad ects? water pump not moving the coolant? could i have clogged the outlet or hose of the manifold that goes to the heater core when i was cleaning it out?

ah yes one thing i forgot to mention, the overflow return line? (small aluminum tube that comes off of the upper radiator hose), anyway that did kink during the removal process when i did the intake. at the time and yet still, I believe i straightened it out and it does NOT leak where i kinked it. just thought maybe i should throw that in there...
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Old 10-09-2012, 12:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

if it can be unkinked it should be fine.. most likely your overheating issue is the result of mixing Dex-cool and green without flushing the system beforehand. it tends to leave a jell-o-like ick in there and gum things up.

also, at this point you would have to flush the system to get any remaining dex-cool and green gunbo out of there. You're most likely not using the right thermostat anyway, as these cars need the Stant 14279 one.

To drain the heater core there are two hoses at the bottom of the car that you'll need to remove. From there you'd have to backflush the heater core either with a garden hose and/or compressed air. Unfortunately the HC still holds coolant even with the system fully drained, so this is the only way to actually flush it.

I've personally used the Prestone green stuff, but with my last water pump and thermostat change I started using Zerex G-05 in my Saturn.. we'll see how well it holds up.
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Old 10-09-2012, 12:44 PM   #6
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

Quote:
Originally Posted by gdf_sl1 View Post
10/8/12: first REAL road test drive, heading to work after about 3 miles, temp gauge is nearly in the red, I have zero heat and im freaking out... i squeezed the upper/lower coolant hoses thinking an air pocket or a clog?
Did you have good head before you did this work? Were both radiator hoses hot? BTW, air pockets should not be a problem, the system self purges air

Quote:
ah yes one thing i forgot to mention, the overflow return line? (small aluminum tube that comes off of the upper radiator hose), anyway that did kink during the removal process when i did the intake.
You mean the line that comes off the area circled in the pic of the first post on this thread? that's a transmission cooler line. On my car, the upper radiator hose does not have anything coming off of it.
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=185319

The upper radiator hose is #7 on the driver side in this diagram. Did you pinch the line #6? That can block flow from the heater core.
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...46&postcount=3

This describes how the system works
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=183785

How exactly did you flush it? Last time i did this, I removed the thermostat housing and block drain, and put the garden hose into the upper radiator hose, shooting water into the engine. I followed that with a gallon of distilled poured into the upper hose into the block

You can check the actual coolant temperature by putting a thermometer into the return fluid in the tank (#1 in the diagram) or with a decent OBDII reader
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:07 PM   #7
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

The upper radiator hose is #7 on the driver side in this diagram. Did you pinch the line #6? That can block flow from the heater core.
saturnfans com/forums/sho...46&postcoun

on my engine, it comes off of #7 right where it attaches to the engine it self, and the small unnamed line that goes back to the resovoir. (in the diagram, it just disappears into the egr) was planning on hitting the junkyard just to be safe, I cant imagine it being more than a couple bucks.

flushing it this morning, I drained it, refilled with water ran for 3 minutes and redrained.... my plan for tomorrow: removing #6 at the manifold and hooking up the garden hose directly with clamps, opening up the radiator drain and the block drain and just letting her rip. does that sound right?

as for whether or not I have a good head...? I have this car for 6 years and never had any issues except for the high idle. I would get an egr code after every oil change but that always goes away. I guess I dont fully understand the question, but there is not any coolant in the oil or oil in the coolant if thats what youre asking?
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Old 10-10-2012, 12:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: solved high idle, now high temp/no heat

i suppose stranger things have happen. while i was at work last night, and talking with a few "car guys", one of them suggested I remove the upper radiator hose just to see if there is fluid in it. I did so, and nothing was there... they suggested to continue on with the whole system flush. but on the way home, after i drove about a half mile, the heater started blowing warm air. the low coolant light came on soon after. and when i pulled into the driveway, the temp gauge never went over the quarter mark. let the engine cool, and filled the resevior....problem solved. just a guess but the self purging of the air may not be functioning properly.

In any case tho, my car is quiet, engine is cool, my heater is warm, and Im loving my saturn again! thanks again for everyones help and especially the clearly stated how-to's!!
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