Erratic coolant temp - : Jeep Wrangler JK Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 12-16-2018, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
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Erratic coolant temp

I know I’ll get grief for this, and I apologize ahead of time for being a dumbass.
I have a leak in my stock radiator and was hoping to buy some time, and replace it myself in the spring when it was warmer, so I added k-seal (recommended by the Jeep guy at autozone) and now I seem to have erratic temp readings on my bully dog tuner. The dash gauge doesn’t really change much at all.
Before all this, It usually hovered around the 190-200 range, and changed slowly, but now it goes from about 182 to 206 rapidly, and then cools down rapidly. In town the other night, it jumped to 226 and I turned on the heater to lower the temp, which it did, and then I just drove it back home. I burped the engine on an incline. It needed some coolant (because of the leak I didn’t know I had) so I’m sure there was air in the system, and maybe I need to do it again.
I have 200k on this stock engine but I run larger tires with a lift and all the fun extras, but it’s been so since I bought it new in 2010, so I don’t think strain is an issue now. I’m trying to find decent info in the thermostats and the temp sensor but haven’t found anything that really fits.
The fan starts on low when it hits about 194 on the tuner and then on high at about 204 or so and it seems to cool it down, but I’m worried about the random spikes and the fact that it’s acting differently than before. The coolant looks fine, no gel or goo of any kind.
If any of you wise jeepers have some insight, I would sure appreciate it.
Thank you in advance
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post #2 of 5 Old 12-16-2018, 04:01 PM Thread Starter
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Also, when the engine is up to 206 and the fan is on high, idling in the driveway, the top radiator hose that goes to the thermostat is not hot, only barely warm and it just jumped to 208
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post #3 of 5 Old 12-16-2018, 10:39 PM
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Sounds like you still have air in the system. Recommend getting one of those funnels that fastens down on the radiator fill hole and run a couple of heat cycles. This is the one I use:

Probably wouldn't hurt to also take a look at what's in your reservoir. Maybe empty it into a clear container. Thinking maybe that sealing stuff gelled up; you'd likely have some wierd looking crap in the reservoir if so.
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post #4 of 5 Old 12-17-2018, 05:38 AM
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the sealing stuff only serves to muck a
radiator up. That hose that doesn't get hot when Jeep is running ; what happens when you squeeze it at that time ? Do you feel / hear coolant within it being "squished" at each squeeze?

It sounds like you've got a non-functional pump or a completely clogged cooling system. Next time you have a little hole in radiator & just need to buy some time until you can properly fix , just shake a little teaspoon of table black pepper( one of those little packets would do) ; the little pepper flakes sink & get pulled towards source of coolant egress where they expand just enough to block leak ( or most of it ) . Non-detrimental to system & will hold ya over.
You should get down in there & find why coolsnt isn't moving thru the system. I would suspect a connection to thermostat or the pump but now this added k-gel stuff has added itself to the issue.....

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post #5 of 5 Old 12-17-2018, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you both for the advice and the suggestions. I flushed the system, changed out the thermostat, and refilled and burped it again and that seems to have taken care of the issue so far. I was lucky, the coolant looked pretty good, and it seems to have returned to normal operation. I’ll just have to wait for the next half way decent day and replace the leaky radiator. Thanks again. Everything was very helpful.
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