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About Foster

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  1. OK, I got 2 fan clutches from the salvage yard, both seem to be in good shape. I have tested both of them with the same results. The tracker runs at the normal temperature (the needle about 3/4 to the mid point) for 10 to 15 miles, then slowly creeps to the mid point and a little beyond. This is not the normal way the tracker ran in the past. Also if I put it under load, going uphill, it goes even higher. I took temperature readings after my last run, parking the Tracker and letting it idle. Here are the results. Top of thermostat housing, 200F, bottom hose, 195F, top of radiator, 187F, radiator cap, 160F, water pump, 197F. I have no real idea what these numbers mean. I know the thermostat is supposed open @ 180F, so I'm guessing the coolant shouldn't get much hotter. Some interesting things I noticed, when I slowed down to make a sharp turn then sped up, the temp gauge fell way back (almost to the 1/4 mark) every time I pushed in the clutch and up shifted. When I reached 5th gear, the needle was back at just past the midpoint. This didn't happen if I just pushed in the clutch while driving or when I down shifted. I took a stick and slowly pushed it into the fan, I was able to stop the fan with very little resistance, in fact I think I could have done it with my hand and it probably wouldn't have hurt me. The overflow tank was filled to about 1/2 inch below the full line when the engine was cold, and about 1/2 inch above the full line when I parked and took the temp readings. Cruising the internet, I've learned more then I've ever wanted to know about thermally activated fan clutches, they are often under filled, from the factory with the silicone oil that makes them work. You can put more oil in the clutch, but the pictures didn't match mine so I'm not game to try that. You can't bench test them without some sophisticated equipment (the clutches work on both centrifugal force and temperature. I am hesitant to purchase a new clutch, unless I am absolutely sure the ones I have are bad. I'm wondering if I should replace the temp gauge or sensor, after the strange needle jumping as I up shifted. I open to any and all suggestions.
  2. Finished the flush, lot of crap came out when I drained the system. unfortunately the Tracker still runs hot. I did find something interesting, I discovered the Flex fan is still loose (free wheeling) even with the engine hot. This is my last hope, I'm going to our local Pull and save wrecking yard and hoping to find a fan clutch that works, the yard has 5 Tracker/sidekicks, maybe I'll get lucky. If not Ebay has one for $45.00 with free shipping. Not sure where to go after this if a new fan clutch doesn't solve the problem.
  3. I am in the middle of doing a 3 day flush of the rad and engine, using Prestone, Flush + Cleaner. I can tell you it is the original head, and no the head gasket is not in upside down or backwards, I made that mistake years ago, never again. The thermostat is in the correct orientation. It was brought up to me that I may have fixed the first problem, running cold in the winter, which led to the second problem, overheating in the summer. I mentioned that I changed the thermostat twice, well I kept the original thermostat because it looked fine. When I did the boiling water test, I tested both the new and "old" one. They both opened at 180 but the old one seemed slower to close, so I tossed it. This may have fixed the cold running problem, but left me with a blockage in the radiator or engine, so I'm doing the flush. I did the thermostat swap in late spring early summer, and did the pump swap about 2 weeks ago. The tracker is not my regular vehicle so I tend to put of repairs. I'll let you know how the flush goes.
  4. Hi Moses: Thank you for your interest, I think you may have misunderstood my problem, my heater works fine. it is the engine that either runs cold in the winter, or too hot in the summer, (see my original post). Unless I am mistaken, I don't see how a faulty heater would affect the engine. Quite frankly it is like the coolant is not circulating through the engine even though the water pump is working fine. I guess my next move will be a flush on the radiator and engine.
  5. I have 92 Geo Tracker, 1.6 Lt. 5 speed. Last fall I replaced the head since then the vehicle won't warm in the winter (even with cardboard covering the radiator, the needle never goes past 1/4) and runs too hot in the summer, I have to keep the heater on. I've replaced the thermostat twice and just replaced the water pump, no change. (the old water pump looked just fine. I checked the temperature at the thermostat (with infrared thermometer) when it is running hot, on top of the dome it reads 194 and at the bottom of the thermostat 234. The lower rad hose is considerably cooler 164, the radiator cap reads 145.. I've checked all the lines that carry coolant and they seem to be connected properly. I've also check the thermostat in a pot of boiling water and a candy thermometer and it opens at around 180. I am completely baffled, if anyone out there has any ideas please post them. Thanks in advance
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