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> Overheating Question
willybean24
post Jan 28 2012, 12:57 PM
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I have a 2000 S40, and my car has been running great. Then, two days ago, the temperature gauge inside the car suddenly started climbing. Now, whenever I start the car, within 5-10 minutes, the temp. reading is all the way to the top, just below the red line. Here's the tricky part: I don't think it's overheating. Today I went down the street and back, and by the time I got back the gauge was all the way at the top again, so I shut my car off in my driveway, and let it sit for about an hour. I went back and turned the key to check the reading, and it was still pegged all the way at the top. I dont see any possible way that after sitting for an hour, the car temp. could still be all the way at the top of the gauge. I was also suspicious before this because when I checked the engine, it never seemed abnormally hot to the touch. Any ideas on what the problem could be? Any help would be greatly appreciated, I have a 20 min drive to school on monday and cant afford my car to blow up.
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Vermont
post Jan 28 2012, 01:11 PM
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Could it be that your thermostat is stuck "shut" ?

Or, without knowing what climate your in, could your water pump's impeller be frozen (or detached) ?

If yor removed the thermostat, it would run too cold . . . . but it would still run.

Maybe it's just a sensor or sending unit; but I'm not familiar with your specific car.

This post has been edited by Vermont: Jan 28 2012, 05:23 PM
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willybean24
post Jan 28 2012, 01:21 PM
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Yes sorry I posted on the wrong forum. I dont believe it is my thermostat though because if it were stuck closed, then the engine would actually be getting hot. I have felt the block after running for a few minutes, and the temp gauge still showing it overheating, and I could rest my hand on the engine without getting burned. I'm really not sure where to start. I was thinking about getting a thermostat just to be safe, since its less than 20 bucks anyways.
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willybean24
post Jan 28 2012, 01:33 PM
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So I just went out and checked again, my car has been sitting for the better part of 2 hours, maybe more, and the the gauge still reads in the red. It hasnt gone down at all. That tells me it is not a thermostat, it's an incorrect temperature reading. However, I still dont know what exactly is causing this faulty reading. By the way, I live in Coneecticut, it's 40 degrees today, so the weather is not a factor in this. Could it possible be a faulty temperature sensor?
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Volvo Virgin
post Jan 28 2012, 04:21 PM
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Just had a quick look on VADIS - but don't know what engine etc. you have.

It looks like the temperature sensor screws into the side of the thermostat housing.

There should be some way of testing at the connector with a meter - not sure if the sensor resistance changes with different temperatures or whether it produces a small voltage with different tempreatures.
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willybean24
post Jan 28 2012, 05:06 PM
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So I believe its actually the temperature sender that is the problem. The guy down at the local parts store says that the temp sender is what sends the temp to the gauges. My new problem now is that my car wont start!!! The car has been sitting now for about 5 or 6 hours, and as soon as I turn the key, the temp gauge still spikes. My thinking was that the car thinks that it is already hot, and is sending less fuel into the combustion chamber. Could this be the reason why my car wont start now?
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Volvo Virgin
post Jan 28 2012, 06:14 PM
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You should copy this thread to the S40 area if you haven't done so already as someone may well have a solution to your problem but wouldn't look here.

Do you have any warning lights?

I would have thought if the temperature sensor was faulty it would almost certainly log a fault code - have you had the fault codes read?

I think it unlikely that this is the reason for the car not starting now, as you have been able to drive it so far - but couldn't rule it out.

Also I dont believe the sensor is directly connected to the gauge - the sensor would feed back to the ECU and it would control the gauge.
As everything is electrical on these cars, you'll find conventional fault finding rather difficult.
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Volvo Virgin
post Jan 28 2012, 06:31 PM
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Just had a quick search for 'temp gauge' on the s40 forums and there are a few threads that indicate that it could be a sensor fault ...

temp gauge problem

It would also appear that it could prevent the car starting?

Have a look at the pinned thread at the top of the s40 forum about sensors too.
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willybean24
post Jan 28 2012, 10:22 PM
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I did post it in the S40 forum as well once I realized I was in the wrong forum.... I was told that the temperature SENDER not SENSOR was actually what is responsible for giving you your gauge reading inside the car. The parts guy down the street told me that the temp sensor was some emissions regulation crap, and that the sender was what actually gives you the reading inside the car. My main concern at this point is that it is no longer starting, but I'll give you the exact background: I noticed that yesterday when I left school, my car was running about halfway up the hot gauge less than a mile after I left school. It continued to rise to the top, even though I was on the highway babying it, and it had cold air flowing over it the whole ride home. I shut it off when I got home, and eventually later, the gauge went back down. Today when I started it, the gauge was at the bottom, but rose extremely quickly after I drove it only about 2 miles, roundtrip. When I got home, I shut it off again, but the temperature gauge never went back down this time. Even after sitting in my driveway for over 5 hours, I went out and checked it and as soon as I turned the key to run, the temp gauge immediately returned to the top. Clearly my engine was not over hot at that time. My thinking is that now that the gauge will not return to the bottom at all, when I turn the key, the computer is being told that the car is already hot, and I know that once a car gets hot, the injectors push in less fuel. So I'm thinking that because the computer thinks the car is already warmed up, hot even, that it is setting the fuel injectors accordingly, and I am not getting enough fuel into the combustion chamber for the engine to actually start. I'm hoping this is the problem anyways. Thoughts?
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willybean24
post Jan 30 2012, 04:26 PM
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Well guys, thanks for all the help, and sorry I posted in the wrong forum. I just wanted to give an update... My instructor at the auto school I go to told me that he thought it was the Coolant Temperature Sensor. Since I couldn't get it started to bring it to school to work on it, I just gambled that that was what the problem was. Turned out to be right on point. As soon as I unplugged the old one, the car fired right up, before I even switched out the part. So anyways, I switched the part out, which took a little while actually, because it's bolted to the thermostat housing, but it's right underneath a radiator hose, and I had to take off the spark plug cover, drain some coolant out of my car, and I was supposed to take off the thermostat housing. Unfortunately, when I was trying to take it off, one of the bolts stripped out. But the good thing is that I managed to get the new one on there, and now the car runs fine again. So at least I can drive it to school tomorrow and work on it with all the proper tools, and I'll just have to tap that bolt out and replace it.

One other note- after I had replaced the sensor with the new one, the check engine light finally came on! I don't get that one, the light didn't come on the whole time while the bad sensor was in there, but as soon as I put in the new, good sensor, the Engine light came on. I'm not too worried about it though, there is an OBD II tester at my school, so I can just throw it on the lift tomorrow and get everything straightened out with it. Anyways, I just wanted to give an update and say thanks for the help, even though you guys aren't familiar with the car. All the help was very much appreciated!
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