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what can cause the gauge to do this? it just happened earlier, on my way home..radiator is less than a month old, no leaks from upper and lower hoses, and overflow bottle level is fine. no thermostat, so that rules out a tstat stuck in closed position. no signs of a blown head gasket either...
all i can think of is air in the system...now just waiting for the car to cool down so i can check. but yeah any advice is appreciated. thanks
Wait hold on... your asking why the water temp is fluctuating when you didn't install a thermostat. Then say its because of air in the system?
The whole purpose of a thermostat is to regulate coolant flow based on temperature... brilliant.
Install a new thermostat, should take you 30-45min to drain the system, install, and fill.
If you still have problems then go into additional troubleshooting.
Don't go looking for other solutions when you haven't fixed the current problem.
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Wait...hold on, that thing actually has a purpose?
I put one in the freezer, and then let it sit in the sun for a while. It just stayed the same. I couldn't figure out how to read the temperature off of it. So I figured it was useless and chunked it into the trash.
Jim, have you ever heard of engine sludge? A low engine temp is a sure way to promote it. People used to think that you wanted a cooler engine...people also used to think that the earth is flat and people used to pray to imaginary guys in the sky.
Most of today's engines are designed to run at 190-250 degrees. You want your engine hot for proper bearing clearance and oil flow. Running without a thermostat is fine in stop and go driving, the fans will not kick on often, but you should still run at a sefe temp. However, as soon as you get on the freeway and you have that constant cool air your engine temp will drop. As the temperature drops, your oil clearances will increase. This lowers oil pressure, allows for too much play between vital engine components, and will eventually result in engine failure.
Solid mass expands with heat and contracts when cooler. This general idea was antisipated and certain components of your engine were tested and measured at multiple temperatures. The engineers decided a temperature that your engine should remain while running. Your thermostat, cooling fans, and temperature sensor work together to keep your engine in a very specific incalescence.
To be clear, buy and install a thermostat now or buy and install a short block later.
Could it be that you actually replaced your water pump and it didn't come with a thermostat? So you took out your thermostat but never replaced it? Or maybe you really replaced your timing belt and never touched your thermostat. If you never removed your thermostat, there is a good chance that it is stuck open and is not regulating the engine temperature properly. You may notice that your gas mileage is poor because of this.