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99 cougar: crank..hood..coolant jug.what could be some diagnostics

i have a 99 cougar...
i have a 99 cougar 6cyl and it ran hot on me last night and also made a few noises and went dead on me,i crank it back up and got it home and popped the hood there were smoke coming from the coolant jug.what could be some diagnostics for this problem?
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Answered in 25 minutes by:
8/1/2008
Tim West
Tim West, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4,638
Experience: ASE Certified Service Manager for Bridgstone/ Firestone
Verified
You need to check the coolant level once the vehicle has cooled off.
Here are the main reasons a vehicle will overheat.

1. Faulty thermostat - Thermostat is usually located before the radiator inside the upper radiator hose. When the temperature of the vehicle gets to "operating temperature" the thermostat will open, allowing coolant to flow through the radiator, where it's cooled.
2. Faulty water pump - The water pump helps build up the pressure to make sure the coolant will is flowing. Coolant can become restricted.`
3. Restriction in Radiator will comprimise coolant flow
4. radiator fans keep the radiator cool when the vehicle is not moving. If they do not activate at idle, the vehicle can overheat.

Tim West
Tim West, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4,638
Experience: ASE Certified Service Manager for Bridgstone/ Firestone
Verified
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Customer reply replied 9 years ago
so do yoyu think thay could be wrong about it having a cracked head since they are not sure?
Customer reply replied 9 years ago
so a thermostat or water pump would me my best bet to get checked for it running hot before i go and make a mistake and get some1 inline to fix a not for sure cracked head?
Well if the car has overheated, the head could be comprimised. What makes them think there is damage to the head?
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Customer reply replied 9 years ago
Reply to Tim West's Post: they stuck some kind of instrument on top of the coolant just that pumps pressure and when they hooked it up the pressure went up without them having to pump it at all
Customer reply replied 9 years ago
i just checked the coolant level in my cougar and it is showing very very low now that it is cooled off
Keep in mind, low coolant could mean a coolant leak. It may not leak immediately, but as soon as enough pressure builds up in the system it might. If you have not replaced the radiator hoses and thermostat with gasket by now. DO IT. It can save you alot of heartache in the future. Once a vehicle overheats, the thermostat becomes comprimised. The thermostat fails, so does the cooling system.
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Tim West
Tim West
Tim West, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 4,638
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