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Unread 02-21-2008, 08:15 AM   #1
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Default odd heating problem

Hello All,
I'm trying to figure out why is it that when my car is idle, it heats up great. The gauge moves to almost the half way mark, and it gets nice and toasty inside. As soon as I begin to drive, the gauge goes down and the heat blows cooler air. If I come to a stop, the gauge goes back up and heat works fine again. Is this a thermostat problem? I know that the cold air that I'm driving in is a factor because if it's not that cold then it continues to blow relatively warm. Any suggestions?

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Unread 02-21-2008, 11:44 AM   #2
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Default Odd heating issues

Heating 1996 Maxima

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Hello All,
I'm trying to figure out why is it that when my car is idle, it heats up great. The gauge moves to almost the half way mark, and it gets nice and toasty inside. As soon as I begin to drive, the gauge goes down and the heat blows cooler air. If I come to a stop, the gauge goes back up and heat works fine again. Is this a thermostat problem? I know that the cold air that I'm driving in is a factor because if it's not that cold then it continues to blow relatively warm. Any suggestions?

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Unread 02-21-2008, 11:51 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by incognito1004 View Post
Heating 1996 Maxima

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hello All,
I'm trying to figure out why is it that when my car is idle, it heats up great. The gauge moves to almost the half way mark, and it gets nice and toasty inside. As soon as I begin to drive, the gauge goes down and the heat blows cooler air. If I come to a stop, the gauge goes back up and heat works fine again. Is this a thermostat problem? I know that the cold air that I'm driving in is a factor because if it's not that cold then it continues to blow relatively warm. Any suggestions?
Well the engine probably stays cooler when you are driving because there is air being forced over it. When it is idle, it relies on the fan and radiator to cool it down. That is just from my basic understanding.
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Unread 02-21-2008, 05:34 PM   #4
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the heater core bypass valve is stuck open. The valve is attached to a bicycle cable that attaches to the lever or knob that adjusts your AC from hot to cool. As for the temps rising. It could be a number of things. Cars usually run hotter when idle and in traffic because there is no air being forced over the radiator. You may want to see if your fan is opperating. It could be that your fan doesn't kick on until it reaches the half way point. If it goes above that I would worry. Mine stays in the same location once it warms up but I have had several cars that move around a lot on the temp guage.
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Unread 02-21-2008, 07:44 PM   #5
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I understand that the engine will be cooler while driving. But for the heat to cool down the way it does is not what typically happens. It's cold in Ohio, but I've had several cars and that's never happened to me before.

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Unread 02-21-2008, 07:45 PM   #6
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for the record, i didn't know that i posted twice. thanks.

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Unread 02-21-2008, 07:56 PM   #7
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the gauge usually stays at a reasonable level, again, until I start driving. When i do, it drops all the way back down to the "Cold" area as if the car hadn't been running. The heat doesn't get too cold, but not as warm as it once was and should be. Thanks for your suggestion. If you can think of anything else, please let me know.

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Unread 02-21-2008, 09:27 PM   #8
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Try a new thermostat. The one in the car may not be factory and could be too low of a temp thermostat for the car. Go get an OEM replacement and see what that does for you...
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Unread 02-21-2008, 10:07 PM   #9
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Personally I think the car either doesn't have a tstat or the heater core is clogging and only allowing minumum flow. What your describing is exactly like a car that had the tstat removed. This could also be a air pocket in the system. First install a OEM tstat like Basil said then flush the system first add a radiator flush then run the car for a half hour with it in there then use a garden hose disconnect one heater core line in force flow through the car and let it come out the block then reconnect and force the oppsite direction into the car after allow as much water to drain out as possible and fill the vehicle with straight antifreeze if you mix don't go over 20% water and 80% antifreeze. Like I said i'd recommend almost straight antifreeze for your case.

What we should end up with is a core with good flow a high temp tstat and a higher mixture of antifreeze(the more water the faster it disperces heat throught the radiator the less the more heat it will retain this in a hot climate can make a vehicle overheat in a cold climate it can make for a great heater). It's possible to have a blend door problem or a valve problem but this is much cheaper and easyier to try first. Make sure to properly bleed the system down after it's done.

Last edited by lautinjr; 02-21-2008 at 10:12 PM.

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Unread 02-22-2008, 06:09 PM   #10
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Ok, thanks for your help guys, I'll give it a try!

Last edited by incognito1004; 02-23-2008 at 12:16 AM.

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