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Another overheating Vanagon
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eeza
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 23, 2006 11:09 pm    Post subject: Another overheating Vanagon Reply with quote

Hey gang,
Here's another........

Symptoms:
Expansion tank overheating.
Coolant level sender leaks when pressurized.
Top half of radiator is cold, bottom hot. Bleed rad - all hot.
Nothing coming out of bleed valve on thermostat housing - kept engine at 2000rpm hoping to see something but expansion tank overheats while waiting (2 minutes).
Refill system & start engine again. Checked bleed screw on rad, more air.

I repeated this process a number of times, raising the front, raising the rear, but no luck.
I've already ordered a new coolant level sender & will probably get a thermostat in the morning but should I be expecting the worst here?
It's always ran ok but could this recent run of hot HOT weather just be too much?
Cheers
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 5:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Change the thermostat prior to getting nervous.

Get the nose of the Van up as high as you can possibly get it.

I do my coolant system bleeding with the nose of Van at least 3 ft in the air--just prior to the back bumper hitting the ground.

The air has no where to go but up---

The tanks getting too hot too quick-
It sure sounds like the thermostat isn't opening up---
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eeza
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cheers Terry,
I think you're right about the stat. I took it out & dumped it in some boiling water.....talk about slowly opening. Plus it only opened a millimetre or two. So I ran it under cold water, closed up nicely. Put it back in the hot...nothing this time.
My local parts place has had to order me in a new one so while waiting I ran it without the stat at all. At first it seemed better - much better flow to the rad. Seemed like more air being squeezed out (front raised approx 9in). After 2-3 mins of constant flow at the rad I tightened up the screw & turned my attention to the engine compartment.
Again, nothing coming from the bleed valve on the thermostat housing but then no real action at the expansion tank either. Let run for maybe 5 mins...much better.
Took it for a 10 min spin around the block, ran ok. Pulled up & the same thing happens - definately too much pressure. Water spraying out of the seal on the coolant level sender (new one on it's way) & a loud gurgling noise from various pipes in the engine bay.
Unscrewed the rad bleed & loads of air hissing out. Also, still a cold spot at the top of the rad even though rest of rad very hot.
I'm gonna try to get the front even higher, replace the stat & coolant level sender & then cross my fingers.
Are these vans known for their stubborn coolant systems? I've never worked on a more frustrating set up!
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gravedigger7
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey man had a similiar problem when I first got my bus on the road. I finally broke down and ended up putting a new rad and the two coolant hoses that came off the rad and let me tell you what a difference!!!! I took a look at the old rad and it was just filled with a bunch of gunk and crap even though I gave it a real good flush down it didnt matter!!! I bought the rad at bus depot and the hoses at van-cafe. Save yourself some time and just replace it!! Hope this helps

LEW

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eeza
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New rad eh? If I'm honest I think you may be right. I've had the van running for about 6 months now after it was left standing for 5 yrs!! I never needed to do anything to the coolant system at the time because it ran nice & cool. However, it did overheat once when I moved the heater control to full cold. When I moved it back to hot all was fine again. I assumed there was an air lock somewhere between the engine & the heat exchanger. I guess the weather helped as it was often below freezing. Kept telling myself I'd fix it when the weather improved. Well the weather improved & the system was running fine so I put it off & put it off until this recent run of scorchio weather. Full on pressurized tank after a relatively short journey.

I'm still waiting for the new stat & coolant level sender.
But I'm thinking about a previous post that I read where the guy ran his van without a stat. Now this sounds like an ideal solution to hot-running vans, & I'm keen to see just how 'ideal' it is. Trouble is, after removing the stat & leaving the o-ring in place the housing still leaks. I've always thought that if water can get out somewhere - then air can get in!!
Do I really want to get into adding extra o-rings?? hmm...I think not.

Terry - I know I'm waiting on parts still but I decided to test the 'raise the front higher' method. Parked facing up a hill, jacked the front end as high as the trolley jack would go & took out the rad bleed screw.
Straight away more coolant spilled out of the expansion tank (of course).
Started to fill the expansion tank with a hose but after a short time it began overflowing. Slowed the hose pipe pressure & dribbled water in but still overflowed within 5 secs.
Then I checked to see if anything was coming from the rad bleed screw....nothing. Dry.
So I started to slowly pour water into the bleed screw hole & could easily hear the water splashing around quite low in the rad. Continued to fill at the rad for over 15 mins all the time hearing the level in the rad rise.
Then my intermittent helper (the gf) pops her head out & says it's leaking from the expansion tank again (again, makes sense).
So my question is should I have the van level while I fill the rad, hoses, heads & tank & then raise the front to bleed the rad?
I've read that it helps to raise the rear afterwards to bleed the engine compartment - have you found this method useful/necessary?
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levi
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you've got the front end up, with the rad screw out AND the expansion tank open?
Close the expansion tank.
No need to take that bleeder screw all the way out to bleed.
You put something on the accel pedal to bring up the revs and just loosen it a bit to let the air out. When it changes to fluid close it off, and do it again later. Keep doing that till you don't get air.
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aviatorjames
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 6:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also bleed mine with the front way up.
Don't forget to open the rear heater core valve (under the seat) and put the heater lever to full hot.
This will insure that you bleed out any air trapped in the heater cores.
jim

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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 8:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You really shouldn't run without the thermostat---

here's why---

It'll take the engine longer to get up to the proper operating temperature, and then once you do all the water will be the same temp--
The thermostat regulates the temp of the coolant.

It closes to get to it, it open to cool it down.

The coolant in the radiator won't spend enough time in the radiator to cool down.
It'lljust flow right through it, and back to the engine--all the same hot temp eventually.

Go over to E-Bay and buy a BEHR radiator for $149.00

It's a real good buy and a good radiator.

It sure sounds to me like it's time.

If the top of the radiator is cold it's half plugged.

Have Fun,
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vwmaniaman
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a thought, but do you have oversized spare tire pinching off water hose to radiator. Didn't get my spare center once and ran warmer.
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thinair
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 24, 2006 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hope this is not your problem but......

A month ago my friend brought home a nice van that the owner said needed engine work. It had the same symptoms as yours. Ran Great until it overheated. Once it would get up to normal operating temp water would start squirting out of the expansion tank temp sensor gasket and around the small overflow hose. We replaced those, but water leaked out again. After each test there was a lot of bubbling from the expansion tank into the overflow. Lots of extra pressure. It turned out that the heads were cracked sending compression over to the water side. There was no water in the oil, or oil in the water, just a small crack.

Like I said I hope that is not your problem. Check everything else first. Also maybe run it with the expansion tank open and have someone step on the accelerator. If you have a head problem coolant will come blowing out the expansion tank. If not, you will only notice coolant swirling as the water pump has picked up.
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eeza
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

update
Ok gang, my thanks go out to you all.
If there is one word I would use to describe approaching an overheating vanagon it is PATIENCE.
And lots of it.
After repeatedly following the steps I realised that good old fashioned patience was called for.
I ended up replacing the stat & the split coolant level sender, bled the rad for over an hour little by little, topping up the tank each time. And finally, driving the thing!! I cannot stress enough how much better the situation got after a quick blast down the highway. I think the constant revs, cool air flow through the rad & the systems natural ability to bleed the remaining air saved the day.
It's been fine ever since. The temp gauge reads more accurately, the stat works as it should & i don't have to refill the tank every 5 mins!!
Thanks again guys
until the next time eh?............
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veganvdub
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2006 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Happy to hear it. I just had to replace the water pump, the metal pipe that is on the left side of the engine and a new radiator to finally get my '87 GL to run cool. A lot of work and money, but it sure is nice driving it without worry about overheating.

Good luck with yours during this very hot summer.
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quigleyp
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 29, 2009 7:33 pm    Post subject: if head cracked? Reply with quote

if the head is cracked what is the $$ damage?
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1st.gear
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 17, 2009 1:00 am    Post subject: thermostat replace Reply with quote

ive got a question, replaceing thermostat, i know that the thermostat goes into the housing, but im also not to sure if the seal goes, into the housing first, then the thermostat, or is it the thermostat goes into the housing first, then the thermostat seal, 3rd. then the thermostat cover w/ the 4 bolts. just to be sure, this is my first to own a vanagon waterbox. the way i did it, thermostat into the housing, then the seal, and finally the thermostat top cover. is this the right way? (hopeso). a second opinion will be nice, just to be sure, thanks guys.
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island champ
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:53 pm    Post subject: overheating 93 euro Reply with quote

aloha, wow.. after reading all these posts on overheating.. i seem to understand much better my problem. new to water cooled vw's and the euro, but since having work done here on our third world island of kauai.. the lady van has blown several hoses, overheated several times, three mechinics and bout three thousand dollars later.. i read here to think it may be that these guys just have not bled out system.. i did not know this either. so, my question is.. if not bled out.. will it cause all these things to go wrong. i have had several hoses split..after putting on new ones, water pump go out or least that what was told, and now has lots of oil substance in coolant.. even after flushing.. but we thought it was accidentllt put in by bad mechinic..who confessed to this.. so putting oily substance..can this make things go so wrong.. lots of problems.. and unfortunally i am blind and not work on the vas ..yet that is.. i know my old chevy.. ut this van is competly new to me..but learning now that i cannot afford anymore mistakes made to my lady van. so, my wife and i do the work now.. just need her eyes to help some. so.. after all this rambling.. bleeding the system really important that is then.. so where would you all start?? any advice would be great.. also, we do not have a manuel..so help in describing what things are and where at would be great help too.. wife not too good at reading books to figuer out.. mahalo much, vik
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello, Welcome to the Samba. You should post the year of your eurovan and the engine type. Bleeding is very important, but should not be required unless the cooling system has been opened for some reason. Probably good to do the work with your wife's help. Some model eurovans had an oil to water cooler made of aluminum. It is common for them to fail and pump oil into the cooling system. Oil will weaken the hoses. Post some more information, and you should get some more specific help.
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island champ
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 4:55 pm    Post subject: Re: overheating 93 euro Reply with quote

island champ wrote:
aloha, wow.. after reading all these posts on overheating.. i seem to understand much better my problem. new to water cooled vw's and the euro, but since having work done here on our third world island of kauai.. the lady van has blown several hoses, overheated several times, three mechinics and bout three thousand dollars later.. i read here to think it may be that these guys just have not bled out system.. i did not know this either. so, my question is.. if not bled out.. will it cause all these things to go wrong. i have had several hoses split..after putting on new ones, water pump go out or least that what was told, and now has lots of oil substance in coolant.. even after flushing.. but we thought it was accidentllt put in by bad mechinic..who confessed to this.. so putting oily substance..can this make things go so wrong.. lots of problems.. and unfortunally i am blind and not work on the vas ..yet that is.. i know my old chevy.. ut this van is competly new to me..but learning now that i cannot afford anymore mistakes made to my lady van. so, my wife and i do the work now.. just need her eyes to help some. so.. after all this rambling.. bleeding the system really important that is then.. so where would you all start?? any advice would be great.. also, we do not have a manuel..so help in describing what things are and where at would be great help too.. wife not too good at reading books to figuer out.. mahalo much, vik
aloha and mahalo for reply. history of 93 euro gl 2.5 ltr van. friend of friend mech tuneup/ change out hoses/ temp. sending unit/ thermstat.. 1200 dollars.. rip off. after he was done, made worst hissing noise.. and ran hotter/ had to fill resovoir or expansion tank.. i think its called.. overheated, took to mechinic.. he replaced temp sending unit.. brought home, had more hissing noise, still having to fill expansion tank.. blew hose in back.. took back to him.. he fixed hose.. brought home overheated and b
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island champ
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 5:11 pm    Post subject: overheating van.. continued Reply with quote

sorry, not used to this yet.. so messege got cut off.. so where was i. took back to mechinic cause now leaking in front hose .. and it sptopped running.. he had to replace timing belt and one hose.. brought home overheated.. took back and it was leaking from front again and this time ebefore he or should i say afterwards he did the belt.. he accidentlly put in oily substance in coolant.. he admitted this and now gunk in tank. overheated so we took to different mech. they did flush of system, change out temp sending unit.. third time now.. took home..overheated.. took back. he said water pump .. so they put in new pump and said timing belt was bad.. so they replaced.. again with roller.. which said had to be replaced each time pump was sodone.. hmmm? brought home.. overheated with leak in front hose.. enough , so i changed this hose and drove it round and it was okay.. but still not as cool as i would like.. making hissing noise. so all this and not sure if air was released from system, rad was checked or what.. but was told that oil cooler may be the reason for oil in water.. ah, they did a leak down test for head.. it was neg.. so where to satartor stop.. three thous dollars, and with rust here on islands.. not much more worth putting in dollars.. mahalo for answeres
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island champ
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 5:18 pm    Post subject: overheating euro.. continued Reply with quote

so.. now all this, hissing noise, seems like getting hot, temp gage is going crazy.. sometimes hot, sometime cold, no visual leaks.. but thats today.. i read a way to check for head leak.. with top of expansion tank.. run .. take up in rev's and see if water swirls or shoots out.. is this ogood.. cause i paid few hundred dollars for leak test.. so , still hot and very confused.. please advise if can.. mahalo, vik
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bukwessul
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good advice on problem checking the coolant system. Thanks for the tips and experience.

I too have a mysterious disapearance of antifreeze. Mechanic said there had been a coolant problem some time ago but didn't seem to be a problem. So I removed the rear heater to reconfig the interior anyway. (I live in FL) connecting the feed and return lines back into a shorter route, I notice that the hose has an inate ability to kink. I turned the "y"s to go a bit straighter, but still isn't ideal. Hope this gives me a bit more time till I can get more time to work through it more completely. Anyone see a major cooling foul for the next few weeks?
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