Car overheats smokes and starts dying on me.I ALWAYS HEARD NEVER PUT WATER IN TILL TH

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Old 07-02-04, 11:39 AM
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Unhappy Car overheats smokes and starts dying on me.I ALWAYS HEARD NEVER PUT WATER IN TILL TH

Long story short. Car overheats smokes and starts dying on me. I keep driving to get to a mechanic. I drove about 6 Chicago stop and go miles. He says I need a new radiator. I say I live about 3 blocks from here Iíll let it cool down add a little water and bring it back in the morning. Cause I wanted to get prices before committing to him. Anyway he puts water in the radiator before it had time to cool down. It was spraying everywhere and I was afraid it could do damage. I ALWAYS HEARD NEVER PUT WATER IN TILL THE CAR COOLS DOWN. I said I was concerned and he still kept adding water, That was spraying out like a geyser. Could that have done more damage or not??? Itís all over the wires and everything. I was able to drive it home and I have other estimates for $225.00 with lifetime warranty on parts.
 
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Old 07-02-04, 03:38 PM
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I would bet that you did more damage than him by driving it around hot. You can add water as long as it's not EXTREMELY hot and the engine is running.
 
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Old 07-03-04, 02:19 PM
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I'm with Desi, 6 miles in stop and go traffic would be more than enough to do the damage. Cars are not nearly as forgiving as in the past when you could drive them hot, wait for cool off, refill with water and drive off. Nowadays the likelihood of warping a head is pretty high. We tow people all the time who turn a $100 repair into a $1000 one just to save a $50 tow job. I'm curious - on what basis do they say that the radiator is "bad"? Normally "bad" for a radiator means either (a) leaking, or (b) clogged internally. The $225 estimate is not too bad if in fact all it needs is a radiator.
What make/model was this?
 
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Old 07-03-04, 02:35 PM
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Cool bad radiator and maybe worse

Thanks for the replys. I really appreciate the education, tips and help I receive here . It a 94 Plymouth Acclaim. It has 110,000 miles on it. He said it was bad because all the water was leaking out. He said I must have a hole in it. Actually it had been empty or close to it and he pointed out where it was accumulating in the radiator cover. My needle was all the way past high. He also said I had oil leaks. He quoted $330.00. To replace radiator. A differant place quoted the lower price when I made calls. The radiator place is closed till Tuesday. I'm more worried now that I may have done more damage or that he might have by adding the water when it was ssoooo hot. Now if there are more problems I won't know if I did it or he did it. I hope its not worse than the radiator.

After this I am really going to take good care of my car and stop abusing and neglecting it. That is if I didn't kill it.
 
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Old 07-03-04, 06:16 PM
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It only takes a minute or two in the red zone to cook an aluminum head. I'd stop trying to blame the shop for damage you've done yourself. Ruining an engine so you can shop for a better price on a radiator will be a mistake you'll remeber for a long time. I see it all the time, "I only had to make it a couple of miles" and didn't want to pay for a tow truck. Well, that's the most expensive couple of miles you'll ever drive.
 
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Old 07-04-04, 07:37 AM
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Before I spent $300 on a new radiator, I would make sure the car doesn't now need a head job. You could quickly be approaching the value of the car.

Recently towed a car whose owner had driven it approximately 3 miles to the next exit with "0" oil pressure after a piece of road debris punched a golfball size hole in her oil pan. THAT was an expensive lesson.
 
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Old 07-04-04, 08:24 AM
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HOw do I tell if it needs a head job??

Originally Posted by the_tow_guy
Before I spent $300 on a new radiator, I would make sure the car doesn't now need a head job. You could quickly be approaching the value of the car.

Recently towed a car whose owner had driven it approximately 3 miles to the next exit with "0" oil pressure after a piece of road debris punched a golfball size hole in her oil pan. THAT was an expensive lesson.

Will the radiator place know if it needs a head job?? How can I tell? Does it need to go somewhere else first?? Thanks
 
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Old 07-04-04, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by katiefran
Will the radiator place know if it needs a head job?? How can I tell? Does it need to go somewhere else first?? Thanks
Any "qualified" technician should be able to determine that. The "qualified" part is the judgement call. I don't know how much talent the radiator shop employs.
 
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Old 07-05-04, 05:38 AM
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Second that; I would get another opinion from a full-service garage. Any reasonably qualified shop would at least have a little concern about head damage/blown gasket if they knew it had been driven hot (which they obviously did know) and should have mentioned it.

My $.02 worth.
 
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