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Chrysler Repair/98 Sebring 2.5 overheats


QUESTION: Hello my issue is an overheat, it does not happen fast I can drive about 10-15 mins before it starts to boil in the overflow tank. Then of course I immediately shut it down. My first instance I let it cool down 15 mins then it wouldn't start and made a pop noise. I filled up the overflow and the cap above the thermoSTAT tower. I had to go 55 miles to get home so I stopped twice in ten miles and both times it took nearly a gallon of water, then I let it cool and just drove the next 30 miles, upon arrival it was again boiling and low. NO smoke or condensation from tailpipe, no visible leaks anywhere to explain fluid loss, replaced thermo and bottom hose still stays cool, top hose gets hot stays hard, suspect water pump? Suspect head gasket or manifold seal? suspect clogged radiator? When first start cold, squeezing bottom hose makes water rise in Thermo cap tower and as water heats the level rises slowly to overflow but no high squirting pressure as if a head gasket. Possibly new thermostat is bad also? possibility of exhaust gases? Oil is level and clean no drips from stick. no foam or debris on cap at thermo tower. Stumped?

ANSWER: Hi Rick,
Thanks for the complete description of the situation. I would suspect that the radiator is clogged as the hot water from the engine entering the top of the radiator is not exiting from the bottom.
Sorry for the delay but I just found the question in the "pool" to which Kevin had referred it.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks much for the answer I agree on the radiator, but now I see water from the tailpipe...Head gasket, are there any sealants etc that will work on head gaskets? Then I can replace the radiator afterwards so I wont have a reclogged radiator!!
Thanks again

Hi Rick,
I would recommend products made by Bar's Leak to try to seal a head gasket leak. The other thing you might try if that doesn't work is to loosen the head bolts one step (to say 65 foot-pounds) and then re-torque them to 80 foot-pounds, in case one of the bolts may be too loose which causes the gasket to  leak. Torque pattern is clockwise, working from the middle to the end bolts.

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Roland Finston


Get a Free Fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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