97 cavalier overheating


Old 11-26-06, 02:26 PM
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97 cavalier overheating

I have a 1997 Cavalier. 2.2 engine.I replaced the resevoir cap to the coolant tank and replaced the thermostat. I took it into a mechanic and also had a friend(also a mechanic) look it over and test for leaks.No leaks that they could find.They said the pump is working properly and the fan works. They couldn't find anything wrong.I spent $80 for them to tell me they couldn't find anything! When it is sitting(not in drive) it does not overheat but once I put it into drive, the car goes into the red within driving it for 5 minutes.Also the ABS light came on???
I can not afford to take it back into a mechanic. Can someone please tell me what I can do/check. I can't afford a new car at this point. I'm stuck with it for the winter. I am so frustrated and can not figure out what is wrong with it. Any advice would be greatly appreciate.
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Old 11-26-06, 02:49 PM
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Could be a few things. If you replaced the thermostat, I would next do a coolant flush. Do you smell antifreeze? If you do, you may have a bad heater core. Check your oil for coolant as well. If there is coolant in the oil, you got some engine issues like a leaking headgasket or cracked cylinder. Doing the coolant flush would be your cheapest route to take at this point. If you flushed the system, and still have issues, it could be your water pump.

Your ABS light might be on because you have low brake fluid or a sensor malfunction.
Old 11-26-06, 03:24 PM
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...possibly an air-lock...try bleeding the cooling system again...

The abs lamp will not be related but you will have to get it scanned to retrieve the code and go from there...don't worry, you'll still have brakes that work...just no abs braking...
Old 11-26-06, 03:37 PM
Join Date: May 2006
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Is your heater working in the car? If it is, the water pump and the thermostat are likely working OK and the radiator is in good enough shape to get you past 5 minutes of driving.

If not then, in addition to your heater core, you could add the three things just mentioned as being suspect.

Hope this helps,

Old 11-26-06, 07:13 PM
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Are you adding coolant???? Is the vehicle leaking?????........The T/stat is new and fan operates ...........OK.........Does the fan cycle with the temp switch or did the tech check it by turning on the A/C????..............Assuming all was done correctly........Remove the upper and lower rad hoses and take a garden hose to the radiator.........See if the flow OUT is about equal to the flow IN.......
Old 11-27-06, 04:14 AM
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You could also have a transmission issue since the radiator doubles as a transmission cooler. Any excess heat being produced by the tranny could cause the water temp to go hot. Also a dragging brake would make the engine work harder, but you would likely notice that with the sticky one having a burning smell after driving.

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