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overheated..guage..be a bad temperature control sensor

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2003Chrysler300M3.5LHO-Temperatureguage goes up to right...
2003Chrysler300M3.5LHO-Temperatureguage goes up to right below red.Engine does not appear to be overheated and turning off ignition for three tofive minutes will result in guage reading about 3/8.Gauge will then begin to go back up.Could this be a bad temperature control sensor?
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Chrysler
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
6/18/2010
Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago
Richard
Richard, Chrysler Technician
Category: Chrysler
Satisfied Customers: 4,141
Experience: Over 26 years of experience as lead tech and shop foreman.
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Hello and welcome to Just Answer!

It is possible that you have a bad coolant temp sensor, but it is not very common.

 

When the temp gauge goes up are the rad fans running?

 

Did you replace those parts for this problem?

 

It sounds like you might have an air pocket in the cooling system which can be caused by an air lock or combustion gases getting into the cooling system.

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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

The fan relays were replaced and the problem seemed to be fixed then started up after three highway trips of about 90 miles each.The rad fans are running when the guage goes up

Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago
Are you losing coolant or does the coolant level stay the same?
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
levels stay the same
Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago

I am just making dinner, is it ok if i get back to you in about 1/2 hour?

Thank you,

Richard

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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Yes
Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago
Thanks!
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Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago
Did this problem start all of a sudden and was there any work done to the car just prior to this happening?
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

Occurred suddenly during an in-town trip.No work had been done prior to occurance.

Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago

I have seen this before and I am wondering if there is something plugging the thermostat wax pellet feed hole.

 

When you take the thermostat housing off and the thermostat out, you will see a small hole. This hole feeds the thermostat from the top of the engine to control the opening of the thermostat. Since the thermostat is on the engine block, it needs to be fed from the top of the engine to control the thermostat.

 

You should be able to blow air through that hole. I had a couple where I was blowing air through and I heard a pop and what ever was in there let go and the problem was solved. I am not sure what was plugging the hole or where it went after, but they haven't given a problem since.

 

There cold be other causes for this like a very small leak in the head gasket/head, air lock in the cooling system(which shouldn't happen if the cooling system remained full before and after this happened).

 

What I like to do is measure the engine temp with a infrared temp gun and a scan tool to see what the temp sensor is reading and compare the two. Infrared temp guns are very accurate at measuring engine temp when measuring around the coolant sensor.

If the two readings are very close and the sensor is showing the temp is hot, you will know the sensor is ok and the engine is getting hot. If the readings are even close, then you likely have a bad sensor.

 

I hope this helps. let me know!

Thank you,

Richard

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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
Since the stat was changed could there be a radiator blockage ?
Chrysler Mechanic: Richard, Chrysler Technician replied 8 years ago

I can see this being caused by a radiator blockage if it was working fine one day and then the next overheating. Radiator problems will happen over a longer period of time and get gradually worse. I have never seen a radiator get restricted that fast. I guess it is possible but I haven't seen it.

 

A rad cap that won't hold pressure will also cause this, but it would tend to blow antifreeze out of the overflow hose. A pressure cap increases the boiling point of the coolant and that is why they use pressure caps. Your cap will have a rating of 16 lbs. Which means it will hold up to 16 psi in the cooling system. For every 1 psi pressure you have in the cooling system it will increase the boiling point of the coolant by 3.25 degrees.

 

If you had your temp measured it would give us a better idea, if the engine is overheating

 

Thank you,

Richard

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