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Brad
Brad, Dealership Technician
Category: Chrysler
Satisfied Customers: 7754
Experience:  19 Yrs Chrysler/Dodge Technician..ASE Master Certified(L-1)
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I have a 99 sebring lx with 106k miles. Was driving

Customer Question

I have a 99 sebring lx with 106k miles. Was driving yesterday blowing the A/C when I noticed the air started to warm. I looked down and the car was overheating. Not sure what was going on I threw the car in neutral and cut it off and cut it back to the on position thinking that maybe it would reset something I was also listening for the fan which I did hear. I pulled over and opened the hood, the coolant reservoir was shaking and I could hear it boiling inside. I put the hood down and let the car sit for a few mins. I could smell the antifreeze. After letting the car sit I started it and heard squeaking which is something I don't normally hear. The car begin to overheat within about five minutes until I started moving again and then the thermostat would even out to the middle I had to drive the car on the interstate in order to get it home and which the thermostat stay roughly a little elevated over the middle the 30 min trip, but once I got to the side roads of my house the temp started to spike again. Any ideas?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Chrysler
Expert:  Brad replied 11 months ago.

Good morning and welcome to JustAnswer!!

My name is ***** ***** I have worked for a Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep dealership for 19 years and I will do my best to help.

When the engine cooled down did you make sure it was full of coolant before starting it? It sounds like you may have a coolant leak and it caused you to run hot. I would first let it cool and fill it with coolant and start it up and look for leaks. The water pump on the 2.5 engine is timing belt driven so if you see any coolant around the timing belt it's likely the water pump. If it overheats when sitting still and the fan is on then feel the top and bottom radiator hoses for a clogged radiator.

Let me know,

Brad

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
The temp outside was ~95° when the car first overheated. It sat for a few hours drove the car home at night. I did hear a squeaking sound.
Expert:  Brad replied 11 months ago.

I would first let it cool and fill it with coolant and start it up and look for leaks. The water pump on the 2.5 engine is timing belt driven so if you see any coolant around the timing belt it's likely the water pump. If it overheats when sitting still and the fan is on then feel the top and bottom radiator hoses for a clogged radiator.

Let me know,

Brad

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I checked the car the coolant reservoir was bone dry I added coolant to the fill line and started the car up. Waited a few minutes to see if the car would immediately overheat and it didn't I cut the AC on and heard the fan come on and then I cut the AC off and still let the car idle I took the car for a ride approximately one mile and the thermostat never started to rise I pulled the car over and Pop the trunk while it was running and did not notice any leaks I also saw that the reservoir was almost half full at that time. I cut the AC on and still heard the fan or compressor come on. I let the car sit in idle with the AC on and the thermostat seemed to level up at three quarters hi. And then it began to level up at The High Line and the reservoir seem to be emptying. I parked the car back in my garage and cut it off and I heard the circulating of the reservoir. It seemed all the liquid had been pushed back into the reservoir and was now hot. The radiator cap was warm or hot
Customer: replied 11 months ago.
The reseviour was percolating* with hot fluid
Expert:  Brad replied 11 months ago.

The engine will pull the coolant it needs from the reservoir as it needs it when the engine is cooling and will fill it when hot. I suggest running it without the cap on until the thermostat opens and the coolant stays at a constant level, if it begins to boil over you likely have a bad head gasket and you will need a block tester to confirm. If it stays at a constant level then install the cap and drive it and see what happens. If it runs good let it cool overnight and see where the level is the next morning...

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
does this mean we have ruled out the water pump? I can't take the coolant cap off right now.
Expert:  Brad replied 11 months ago.

If you didn't see any leaks then yes, but in order to be 10% sure you will need to pressureize the cooling system with a test kit to ensure no leaks. Let the engine cool and then fill it with 50/50 antifreeze mix until the level stays at a constant level with the theromostat open when the radiator hose is hot, then install cap and drive it. If it does good allday then check the jug the next morn..

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Tested like you suggested and no noticiable leaks... but i did see a little drip and i think there may be a crack in my radiator. Is this a fix for this i could do or would i need to replace it. I imagine I would need to change the thermostat as well correct?
Expert:  Brad replied 11 months ago.

If you see a leak in your radiator then it will need to be replaced. A slow leak over time will empty the radiator which is what happened when it ran hot. Once you replace the radiator and theromostat you should be in good shape..

If you need anymore assistance feel free to reply and don't forget the RATING before leaving the site!!

Have a great day,

Brad