Coolant Below thermostat
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Thread: Coolant Below thermostat

  1. #1
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Coolant Below thermostat

    Hi All,
    Hoping someone here could help me with this. For the sake of not starting yet another Overheating thread, I'll cut to the chase here. My 95 LWB started overheating very suddenly the other day during a normal drive on flat roads in cool weather. All visual stuff recommended on this forum has been done and all looks good so, starting with thermostat test.

    My question is, in the shop manual, it states to "partially drain cooling system until coolant level is below thermostat housing". Can anyone tell me how one would tell when the coolant level is below the housing? Trying not to go through the trouble of a full drain and process of refilling properly in order to avoid air pockets in system.

    Thanks in advance everyone! Oh, and if you haven't yet downloaded the large file of shop manuals, repair manuals, etc. I highly recommend it. Wow. Kudos forum peeps.

    -Patrick

    Coolant Below thermostat-screen-shot-2019-06-02-8.06.29-pm.jpg

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  3. #2
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Rough guide is to get level in expansion tank to just above main outlet hose visible looking straight down from cap. This is with the large black expansion tank fitted to my example, 1991 which seems to be common fit.

    Air locks will be at top of system ordinarily so it'll not protect you from that eventuality I believe.

    With this type of tank they effectively bleed themselves anyway as the large bore from base goes direct to water pump inlet hose that's coming from radiator base. Run it at idle and gently trickle fill tank and it should expell air via this route routinely with cap open.

  4. #3
    Premium Member pl626's Avatar
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    At this age, you should also look at the condition of the radiator, when was it last serviced, does it need to be recored?, etc. it’s amazing what a fresh/rodded radiator will do for these old Buick, er Rover V8s.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Cheers,

    pc

    '95 RRC SWB Alpine White
    '95 RRC LWB Avalon Blue - Sold
    '15 E400 Cabriolet
    '06 E350 Sport (killed by friend's ex)
    '87 HD FLST with '02 Fatboy sheetmetal
    '02 Hobie Getaway

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  6. #4
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Agree change of radiator does wonders. Changed my old copper original (1984) radiator which started leaking but was keeping the engine just about ok temperature wise to a brand new (cheap $200) aluminum radiator and now can sit idling in ~110F traffic with AC on full blast and temperature just won't go over ~190 (3/4 scale). Before I was was watching the gauge climb and had to resort to AC off and heating on to keep things in check. Not pleasant in Houston. Should have changed radiator earlier for sure.

    Also coolant does not last forever. I would plan for a bit of a cooling service and drop all the coolant and replace with fresh. I just get the cheap coolant from Walmart and change every 2 years. Just pull bottom hose and drain all in a bucket. Good time to check the condition of your rubber hoses also.

    My system was really clean, but if you find corrosion you should flush and possibly consider how healthy your cooling water pumps is.

    These are old cars now.

  7. #5
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Thanks for the awesome feedback guys. Yes, radiator will certainly be inspected as well and perhaps swap out/ re-cored for good form. RRLondon, this is precisely the info I was looking for! Will have a go at it and report back after pulling/testing the stat.

    A couple Pics for good form....Recently added LWB OEM running boards which are in fact very hard to source here in the states. I happen to like the "soccer mom" look as some here have called it

    Many thanks again!
    Patrick

    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2290.jpg
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2470.jpg

  8. #6
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    OK, started getting into the process today. Appears as if I can remove the thermostat housing with relative ease and even without messing with any of the distributor cap wires however they are rather in the way.

    Question- is there an ideal procedure to bleed off only enough coolant to achieve getting below the thermostat level? I feel that if I release bottom radiator hose, I will have to evacuate and dump all the fluid....thinking of syphoning from radiator out of radiator cap?

    thanks all,
    Patrick

  9. #7
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    That should get you to the right level, syphon via the screw in plug at radiator top left when looking from front of vehicle.

    It's no big deal to drop it all out though into a clean bucket, you can refill by pouring it through a large coffee filter to make sure you've no particals in it. It's OK to reuse particularly if you are continuing to work on it as to keep replacing it wouldn't be economical or environmentally friendly.

    It'll also give you a look see of anything in the fluid that shouldn't be there if captured by the filter. Post a picture of the filter afterwards.

    Car looks really good in the pictures.

  10. #8
    FRESHMAN ROVER CowtownQ's Avatar
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Do you have a link to the manuals for download?

    Was just looking at buying one of these e-manuals for my 1991
    https://www.emanualonline.com/Cars/L...er/Classic.htm

    Thanks
    1991 RRC Vogue SE
    1995 Porsche 993 RS Tribute
    2011 MB 350 Wagon

  11. #9
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    CowtownQ here it is, download the big one +/- 550MB
    http://www.landroverresource.com

    RRLondon thanks for all the help buddy, appreciate the compliments, very proud of her! Lets get going on a bunch of pics and a lil' step by step shall we:

    Went with syphon method per RRL, nice moves sir. 13bucks at Lowes, nice unit.
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2684.jpg

    Use your 5mm socket to gently release hose clamp.
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2686.jpg

    Having zero experience under the hood of these cars, I think I like what I see inside the inlet. Not a drop of coolant shed RRL!
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2688.jpg


    Get after the two bolts holding down your housing with an 11mm socket or wrench.
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2690.jpg

    What I believe to be a clean looking housing? Amazing how light these aluminum parts are.
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2691.jpg

    Theres the pretty boy, lets pull him out and see whats going on.....
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2693.jpg

    Dammit, coolant all over upon pulling, didn't drain enough obviously. Question, do I need to worry about cleaning up this mess on the block below? Showered it pretty good.
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2694.jpg



    Original issue perhaps? "England" "Waxstat"
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2696.jpg

    220F no movement at all. 192F nothing happened figured I'd take her all the way to 220F to no avail. Concluding bad thermostat....Yes?
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2701.jpg

    Bonus scene: spotless insides with zero corrosion....I think ?
    Coolant Below thermostat-img_2706.jpg



    More to follow, thoughts on the above:
    -Do I need to worry about the +/- 3 cups of coolant that cascaded over block and parts beneath when I pulled the 'stat?
    -Am I indeed looking at what appears to be a non opening, non actuating thermostat? Many options online to replace with OEM unit, but would like to get everyones advise first.

    Thanks!

    Patrick

  12. #10
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    For the spilt coolant, just sloosh it down with warm/hand hot water to flush it away. It's not too bad but just goes sticky if left.

    It does look like the thermostat is inoperative and prime suspect in your case. Check boil a replacement prior to fitting and then assess results.

    I've not experienced difficulty with std fit part for this, but opinions may vary.

    If you've not run one of these engines much, they suffer from galvanic corrosion of cooling system from their dissimilar metals IF they are run without any type of coolant additives. Yours looks to be fine from the view of internal and colour of fluid. You get a kind of creamy / sand colour particals in it if run on plain water, which is exactly what inhibit the radiator core passages. Initially it seems that yours has been looked after correctly too avoid that. Prognosis is good for new stat and verification as I see it.

    One other external check is to shine a torch through the radiator from back and observe at front, the lower extremes can get alot of insects and general build up from use which obviously affects cooling efficiency. This is generally a slow process though.

    Your experience of being ok, and then straight into a problem, aligns more with a step change though. The stat would do that, so it fits the profile of experience, hopefully you've got it with this.

  13. #11
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    RRL- I will do the light through the radiator inspection and report back. Thanks for the tip on the new stat testing prior to install . Stat should be here Monday, will be installing same day hopefully time permitting. Again, appreciate all the knowledge sir!
    Patrick

  14. #12
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Hi all,
    Any tips for the partial coolant top off I will have to perform? New stat arrived today and going to install shortly. I can refill with siphon into radiator, I can pour into radiator, coolant tank etc. Any thoughts? Must I perform this while motor is running?

    Thanks in advance!
    Patrick

  15. #13
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    You shouldn't really have a problem on this as the never type fills and sorts air quite easily.

    It it's got a fill bung at highest point of engine next to plenum chamber, then fill via this while leaving expansion tank open ( if not fitted, use the top radiator fill bung).

    Don't start it with top fill open else the water pump will push out a volcano there

    You should see the level start to rise inuthis expansion tank while doing this.

    Once you get enough coolant in, then start an with expansion open and top off the level as appropriate. When stable, try it all sealed to assess.

  16. #14
    FRESHMAN ROVER
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    Re: Coolant Below thermostat

    Checking in here for an update, just installed and topped off with RRLs procedure and she is now running tip top. Appreciate the help very much! Tested new stat and functioned perfectly prior to install, now I need to get back in there as I did not position the new stat with the breather at the 12 o'clock position. Secondly, I couldn't remember if the gasket went on before or after I put the new stat in the hole in the block? Fairly certain stat goes in first as it fit perfectly inside the inset countersink in the block for a snug fit. Still very curious however.

    Thank you!
    Patrick

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