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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hmmm…. I’ve been watching an issue unfold for about the last 2 weeks on my car. Because it’s been sooooo cold here (I only drive it on dry roads), I watch my temperature gauge religiously. I’ve noticed the car go to 209….which it’s never done in 90 degrees, let alone in 0 degrees F. So the other day I started it at work and it got to 40….I sat there for another 2 minutes idling and it didn’t move. Then it suddenly shot up to 65. Another time it got to 145 and stayed there for several minutes of driving before it started to move again. I’m concerned at this behavior. It’s never done these things before which is concerning…. I know that it is most likely a thermostat….but another engineer suggested a head gasket. I know that it’s been running rough, but that’s nothing new and is caused by my current crappy tune. Just wondering what everyone’s thoughts maybe on this…… I’m going to look at coolant and oil tonight when I get home….
 

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Don't forget you often see higher coolant temps in the cold weather. The old apparent symptom of having the heater on high. 209 is not worrisome.

The issue of jerky temp changes could be a sticky thermostat, or it could just be measurement latency.

I see nothing to worry about - at least yet :). Just keep monitoring. Doesn't look like a head gasket, for sure. That would cause rocketing temps and warning lights.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Soup.....I am wondering if I don't have a WP issue again. My coolant is low again. Gonna drive it to work tomorrow and see if I get the low coolant light. If I do, dealership time again I guess..... Seeing as how I have an extended warranty till September or another 8k!
 

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if the coolant is not FROZEN ! then the thermostat is sticking . if it were a head gasket your car would be running bad or blowing white smoke actually boiling water out the tail pipe or it would not have any heat at all or over heating . its very hard to say what a head gasket will do it could do any above listed . more then likely the t stat is sticking .
the 2.4 and 2.0 Pontiac or Saturn engines are not common for head gaskets . another thing my 2006 solstice temps go out to 210 sitting in the driveway. runs about 190 on the free way. normal .
 

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Are you guys assuming its the Tstat because of the kappa's unusual coolant routing, IE, ever other car you can turn on the heater to lower your temps, coolant temp increases in a kappa.

T stats usually fail open and therefore he would never get up to temperature
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
if the coolant is not FROZEN ! then the thermostat is sticking . if it were a head gasket your car would be running bad or blowing white smoke actually boiling water out the tail pipe or it would not have any heat at all or over heating . its very hard to say what a head gasket will do it could do any above listed . more then likely the t stat is sticking .
the 2.4 and 2.0 Pontiac or Saturn engines are not common for head gaskets . another thing my 2006 solstice temps go out to 210 sitting in the driveway. runs about 190 on the free way. normal .
Your a little too new here to know this (not a bad thing), but I have a really bad tune. That’s why I was leaning toward a headgasket.

As far as the thermostat and heater actually cooling off our cars….not necessarily. When you turn the heat on, the temp actually goes up because of where the temp sensor is placed by the heaterbox. Furthermore, I had my WP done 2 years ago this April (about 20k ago) and have not touched the coolant since. They actually flushed and refilled my coolant at that time. So I know there is no airbubble in the system as it’s been fine for 2 years. It’s been too cold here to tell if the smoke is white or if its just heat….and I don’t have mufflers on my car so the exhaust never really “warms up”.

And then today it got stuck at 175 for about 5 minutes and I started panicking for fear it was stuck closed..... It finally went to normal operating temp but got up to 209 before it went back down.... Gonna call the dealer today and make sure my warranty covers the thermostat....otherwise it could be a long, cold weekend!
 

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Is the temperature going to 209 and then back down while driving or while the car is sitting idling?

209 is not that high, the warning light for high temp doesn't even come on until 255. We will regularly see temps get in the 220-230 range driving hard with no damage.

Did you data log the car with the current tune? If it is really bad, are you seeing a lot of knock (10+)? Even then, I would hesitate to guess a headgasket going bad since we have never seen a stock headgasket failure on these engines that was not attributed to another part failure first.
 

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lol I am new here but you have to keep in mind I am a certified tech . that is what I do for a living . going on 18 years . go ahead and replace that costly head gasket first . but make sure you replace the thermostat as well . that way it will be fixed after you throw a bunch of parts at it more then likely don't need .
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Is the temperature going to 209 and then back down while driving or while the car is sitting idling?

209 is not that high, the warning light for high temp doesn't even come on until 255. We will regularly see temps get in the 220-230 range driving hard with no damage.

Did you data log the car with the current tune? If it is really bad, are you seeing a lot of knock (10+)? Even then, I would hesitate to guess a headgasket going bad since we have never seen a stock headgasket failure on these engines that was not attributed to another part failure first.
First off, coolcorey, I had no idea and meant nothing by my comment. I have a pretty bad tune...or so I've been told and was afraid it maybe affecting the motor.

Dave, it does both....usually what happens is I'm driving and come to a light and it starts to slowly climb. Yesterday it went to 203 while driving, came to a stop light for 30 seconds and it climbed to 209 during that 30 seconds. Then it dropped back to 194 after I started moving again. I have used my Torque app and only really got over 10 on knock under extreme acceleration and then it didn't happen all the time. I have a good practice.....My office is literally 15 seconds off the freeway, so I sit and let my car idle for a minute or two before I shut it off (something I did with my old Laser 2.0L turbo). During that time it will climb to 205-209 and won't go back down unless I blip the throttle. Then it will flutter +-2 degrees.
 

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if the coolant is not FROZEN ! then the thermostat is sticking . Coolant does not freeze unless you are running straight water which drag racers do .The Ghost lives in Michigan so I have to believe given the winters there that he is running antifreeze in his system .
 

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First off, coolcorey, I had no idea and meant nothing by my comment. I have a pretty bad tune...or so I've been told and was afraid it maybe affecting the motor.

Dave, it does both....usually what happens is I'm driving and come to a light and it starts to slowly climb. Yesterday it went to 203 while driving, came to a stop light for 30 seconds and it climbed to 209 during that 30 seconds. Then it dropped back to 194 after I started moving again. I have used my Torque app and only really got over 10 on knock under extreme acceleration and then it didn't happen all the time. I have a good practice.....My office is literally 15 seconds off the freeway, so I sit and let my car idle for a minute or two before I shut it off (something I did with my old Laser 2.0L turbo). During that time it will climb to 205-209 and won't go back down unless I blip the throttle. Then it will flutter +-2 degrees.
In your tune, do you know what temperature that the fans are commanded to start coming on?

FYI, over 10 knock is really high, we do not let anything go that hits over 4.
 

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no more comments we will see what the dealer says when the car is brought in . and for coolant it does freeze I am in Michigan as well . I have replace a few freeze plugs this year and 1 entire engine because the block cracked . a lot of people do not take the time to mix the antifreeze to negative 30 or more and it will freeze . hope you get your car fixed and its not to costly .
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Hi Dave, my fans come on at 208... Most of the time my knock retard stays at 0. Very seldom does it move (if that's the right sensor I've been logging). The highest I've seen in my logs is 3.69.

coolcorey, my car is garaged and the coolant was flushed by the dealer 2 years ago this May. And found out too that my warranty ended Feb 21st..... DOH!!!!!
 

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With the amount of driving you have done on the car since 2-26-15 when you started the thread, if you are not seeing a loss in coolant or oil in the coolant, a head gasket is not completely ruled out, but pretty low possibility.

Thermostat is a possibility, but the temp going to 209, especially while idling would be completely normal if your fans are not set to come on until 208 degrees.
 

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I hear ya Ghost, I was under the impression "mr cool" was about 23 myself but now I guess that just means he drives a Silver Solstice. Nice to know we have another 18yr tech on board.
 
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