1998 Toyota Camry heater only blows "warm"


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Old 10-04-11, 04:13 AM
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1998 Toyota Camry heater only blows "warm"

Hi,
I have a 1998 Toyota Camry 2.4L with an automatic transmission. I've just started using the heater again as it has become colder & it won't blow "hot air" The air is warm at best & not worn enough for a cold morning! The blower fan works fin on all settings & the AC blows ice cold. I only have basic mechanic skills and any help to ID the problem would be appreciated.

Thanks,
cadsys1022
 
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Old 10-04-11, 04:22 AM
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First question, does the engine temp come up to the proper level when warmed up? Indicator should be pointing horizontally at about the middle of the temp gauge range on a Camry.
 
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Old 10-04-11, 02:11 PM
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heater only blows "warm"

you should check your temp gauge when you the car is fully warm up , then if your heater still does not blow hot air , you might need to have your engine and heater system cleaned and flushed out and new antifreeze add . replace the thermastat if you do this because you know every thing is new as far as the heating system. raditors should be flushed about every 2years.
 
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Old 10-04-11, 05:02 PM
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To the_tow_guy,
At idle the temp indicator raises to the middle of gauge, but when I start driving to work the indicator drops back down, almost as low as when the car is off.

To bbaum,
Thanks for the advice. If this turns out to be an easy fix, I will definatley pay better attention to the cooling system maintenance. Is there a preffered manual for how to change the thermostat? All I am familiar with is Haynes (I don't have one yet)

Thanks Again!
 
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Old 10-04-11, 05:14 PM
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You've almost certainly got a bad thermostat; that's why I was asking about the temp gauge. Sounds like it is sticking part way open and allowing the coolant temperature to drop off rather than being properly regulated at the operating temperature. Don't sweat doing any fancy flushing; replace the thermostat and put fresh coolant in and you should get your heat back.

Haynes or Chilton, either one is fine; I've generally been partial to Haynes. You should also be able to find the procedure in the repair manual section at autozone.com. Thermostats are not complicated, 2 or 3 bolts and the housing (the part the upper hose clamps to) should pop right off. Be sure to use new gasket and clean the surfaces before reassembling. Also pay attention to the direction the thermostat itself is installed.

Good opportunity to replace hoses if they haven't been done in a while (if ever).
 
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Old 10-07-11, 07:05 AM
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Most definately a partially stuck open t-stat. During the summer months you will not notice a problem. But once the ambient temp drops, that's when you'll notice a problem. I had a stuck open t-stat in my 91 S10 for two years. As long as it wasn't overheating in the summer, I was able to deal with it during the winter. Finally one winter I decided to change it, and I swear it ran a lot better. I would even say the mpg went up slightly in the summer and winter months.
 
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Old 10-07-11, 08:16 AM
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That would make sense. Modern engines are engineered to run optimally within certain parameters, one of them being the operating temperature.
 
 

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