Can a clogged heater core cause my '96 toyota tercel to overheat within about 5 to 10 min of engine start running at idle?

Derek Smith

Asked by Derek Oct 23, 2012 at 12:08 AM about the 1996 Toyota Tercel 2 Dr DX Coupe

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Symptoms are vehicle overheats very quickly.
I believe that the radiator fan runs.
Windshield defroster was putting a film on inside of windshield.
I have not replaced the thermostat or radiator cap.
I assumed that the heater core was bad but the more i look into it it seems that there are quite a few
possibilities and maybe i don't have to replace the heater core.

1 Answer


Probably not the heater core, the car will run fine without any coolant passing through it. Start with the easy stuff, replace the thermostat, flush the system, if you are loosing fluid, have a pressure test done.

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