How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask HondaPlatinum Your Own Question

HondaPlatinum
HondaPlatinum, A Technician
Category: Honda
Satisfied Customers: 25636
Experience:  13 year honda platinum level
3827149
Type Your Honda Question Here...
HondaPlatinum is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

1996 Honda Accord: the coolant in the radiator seems to overflow..cool

Customer Question

When I drive my 1996 Honda Accord on these hot Florida sunny days, I notice that the coolant in the radiator seems to overflow into the reserve tank. I seem to keep losing it a little each day and it doesn't return back to the radiator. When the engine is cool in the morning, I will usually fill the radiator to the top and the reserve overfill tank to the minimum level. This is what the manual will indicate. On the hot days it will overflow to the tank and sometimes I will see the level over the maximum level mark. Then the temp gauge will begin to rise to the half mark and maybe a little above. The coolant temp can sometimes goto about 225F-230F according the the OBD-II reader. I know it's because there isn't enough coolant in the radiator because that excess is in the overfill tank. I thought it maybe the radiator cap, but I replaced it with a new one and still has the same problem. The radiator was replaced 2 years ago. I just had a coolant flush about 4 months ago.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Honda
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok sounds like the thermostat is slightly sticking have you replace the thermostat?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Car serviced on 1/24/09

INSPECT FOR OVERHEAT. PERFORM COMPRESSION TEST, BLOCK TEST, INSPECT THERMOSTAT, CHECK COOLING SYSTEM FOR LEAKS. NO PROBLEM FOUND AT THIS TIME.

Car serviced also on 5/25/09

INSPECT FOR OVER HEAT AND CHECK SHAKE POSS BALANCE SHAFT BELT. REMOVE FT TIMING COVERS INSPECT TIMING MARKS OK RESET TENSION ON TIMING BELT REASSAMBLE AND ROAD TEST SET IDLE CHECK COOLING SYSTEM FANS OPERATE NORMAL BLEED COOLING SYSTEM AND ROAD TEST
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok thats fine they did not actually take the thermostat out and visual check it I garuntee that they just made sure the cooling fans came on and it did not overheat ,alot of time has passed since then and it sounds like the thermostat is partially sticking causing htis issue and this is the first place to start,it also could be a faulty cooling fan motor starting to short out but sounds more like a faulty thermostat id have that checked next
HondaPlatinum, A Technician
Category: Honda
Satisfied Customers: 25636
Experience: 13 year honda platinum level
HondaPlatinum and other Honda Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
They are cheap to get, I can try putting in another one.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Yes and its the most likely cause just make sure you bleed all the air out of the system
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I put in the new thermostat. I started the car and took off the radiator cap. Then I ran the engine until the thermostat opened up. It appears it opened as I did noticed that the coolant level in the radiator began to drop down. I let it heat up to temp and I added coolant until full, and then put the cap back on. I will have to wait a couple of days to see if the problem is resolved.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok also make sure all the air is out of the cooling system and it was bleed properly
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
How do I properly bleed the coolant system?
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
There's a 12 mm bleeder valve on the thermostat housing and it supposed to be open when fill the system and when coolant comes out there's no more air then you close the valve
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I see, I never knew how to do that.
I notice that when I start the car when the endine is cold after sitting all night, the idle is rather erratic. It idles rough at about 1200 RPM, and then to 1300, and then settles at a smoothe 1500 RPM where it's suppose to be. It will take sometimes about 30 seconds to a minute to stabilize. Sometimes it's so bad that I lose the ability to accelerate. That only happens if I don't drive the car for 2 days. But, almost everyday when I start the car in the morning, the idle is unstable. When I get out from work after 8 hours and start it up, it seems to work OK. I know the car has about 215,000 miles on it, but I know there is a reason for everything. I'm not a mechanic and that's why I need help with some of the jobs that I believe I can do myself.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok that issue could be a faulty coolant temp sensor in the head if its faulty it will give the wrong reading to the ecm saying the car is warmed up when its really cold and it with affect the air fuel ratio and cause the problem
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I have to check the Haynes manual to find out where it is located.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Should be under the distributor on this year honda
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I see it. It even illustrates it in the Haynes manual. Is there a way to test it to indicate that it is defective or not?
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok in going to try to post the test for that sensor?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I had to get an oil change at the service center where I usually go to and the mechanic says that the erratic idle that your experiencing sounds like partially clogged fuel injectors.
As far as the overheating problem is, I'm going to have wait a couple of days to make sure the coolant system is working more efficiently than before after I replaced the thermostat.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Have they done a fuel pressure check to determine the injectors are malfunctioning
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
<p> </p><p>No they haven't </p>
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok they need to do this along with a fuel injector leak down test to see which injector is bad, also have you checked the coolant temp sensor
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I found the coolant sensor but don't know how to test it.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
Ok I'll try to post the test today?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I took the car to a local service center and told me that the reason for the rough idle is due the fact that there is carbon deposits that accumulate on intake valves, injectors, ports, fuel injectors and combustion chambers causing loss of power, rough idle. I have to take it in for service next time I come in. He put some fuel cleaner in the gas tank for now. He said they have to do a full fuel and vacuum system clean.

As far as the coolant system goes, I replaced thermostat and it improved it a little. I noticed that it runs cooler longer. But, the coolant level in the overfill tank seems to still rise each day I drive on hot sunny days and very little returns to the radiator. I filled the radiator to the top and filled the reservoir tank to the minimum level in the morning when cold. I just a few days, the reservoir tank is now at the maximum level(cold)and still rising. I usually will see it dropping down as the coolant sucks back into the radiator.I don't notice it much when I drive short distances, but on longer trips I do. Especially, when I stop at a lot of traffic lights.
Expert:  HondaPlatinum replied 5 years ago.
There is actually a good chance the carbon could be a good part of the issue for the rough idle as for the coolant sounds like it's still partially airbond which will cause this problem with the overflow
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I noticed that the temp gauge started creeping above the half mark yesterday during a Sunday afternoon hot day drive. I haven't check the radiator in about week. When the temp gauge is at the half mark, the coolant temp will indicate that it's 221 degrees according to the OBD-II reader/monitor. When the temp gauge sits below the half mark normally, it will read as 199 degrees. It seems that when the coolant temp begins to rise above where I normally see it, it tells me that the coolant level in the radiator has just dropped below the fins at the top of the radiator. As long as the coolant level is above the fins, it runs cool. I did notice that some of the coolant sucked back to the radiator, but not enough. I would always remember, that every time I would check the radiator coolant level in the past with the engine cold, it would always be right at the filler neck. In hot weather, I would have to add coolant to the reservoir because it would literally suck back reserve coolant to the radiator when it needed it as it should and would never overheat. I don't understand it. I don't see any leaks. Neither could the mechanics that worked on my car. They tell me they couldn't find anything wrong with it, but I know my own car. He said it's OK to see the temp gauge to reach the half mark in very hot weather, but I had this car for over 10 years, and in the past, I always see the temp gauge below the half mark no matter how hot the weather is. I know he is the mechanic and I'm just the observer, but I do have some common sense.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you very much for saving my daughter and her family a lot of money on her Honda. You are definitely on my list for future help. Thanks, again. Fred USA
< Last | Next >
  • Thank you very much for saving my daughter and her family a lot of money on her Honda. You are definitely on my list for future help. Thanks, again. Fred USA
  • I just heard from my mechanic. You were right...a $45.00 job. THANK YOU!! Your response was received in less than 10 minutes!! Linda B. USA
  • Your answers were clear and the diagrams were perfect. Dealer wanted $87 for an hour of labor and even I did it in 15 minutes. Ed USA
  • HONDA PLATINUM was great. I really appreciate his help. I was ready to trade my new Honda until he told me to wait until I got 3,000 miles on it and my gas mileage would get much better. Summer USA
  • I took the Power Steering O-Ring service bulletin linked from JustAnswer to my Acura dealer, and not only did they no-charge the o-ring, they also replaced the power steering pump at no cost. Gary R Stevenson Ranch, CA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Kyle N.

    Honda Master Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    3627
    Honda Dealer Tech, ASE Master Auto Tech
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/hondatech/2010-05-03_025935_resized_work_pic.jpg Kyle N.'s Avatar

    Kyle N.

    Honda Master Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    3627
    Honda Dealer Tech, ASE Master Auto Tech
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/hondacb77/2008-10-27_165606_me3.jpg John G.'s Avatar

    John G.

    Honda Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    2643
    Dealership tech since 1982. ASE and Honda Master Technician.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/muddyford/2012-6-13_1204_1.64x64.png Chris (aka-Moose)'s Avatar

    Chris (aka-Moose)

    Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    204
    16 years of experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FO/fordguy4u/2011-12-17_222940_HPIM1257.64x64.JPG Ron's Avatar

    Ron

    ASE Certified Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    175
    ASE Certified Tech 34 years.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/EU/eurotec/2012-6-11_13153_mpjaphoto.64x64.JPG Marty's Avatar

    Marty

    Bosch Master Tech

    Satisfied Customers:

    113
    Bosch Certified Master Technician
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/AM/amedee/2013-10-24_23656_Amedee1.64x64.jpg Amedee's Avatar

    Amedee

    ASE Master Technician

    Satisfied Customers:

    1112
    ASE Master Technician advanced level specialist. Wisconsin certified emissions state inspector
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TH/thebesthonda/2011-1-15_04510_Photo022009005.64x64.jpg thebesthonda's Avatar

    thebesthonda

    ASE MasterTechnician

    Satisfied Customers:

    2299
    26 years experience
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Mechanic for Honda
HondaPlatinum
HondaPlatinum
11273 Satisfied Customers
13 year honda platinum level