overheating problem

maddison
250

Asked by Nov 29, 2008 at 03:38 PM about the 1994 Acura Legend

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

does anyone know what else could be making my 94 acura legend l overheat. the temp gets almost to the H on the temp gauge and then it will drop back down instantly to normal. then it will slowly work its way back up to hot. I have replaced all relays to the fans, the thermostat, i have checked and tested the temp sensor the fan motors, and the coolant level. any ideas?

34 Answers

BaggrBreaker87
125

of course ive never even seen ur car but check if its lubricating properly if its not this will cause friction in the engine so check the valves and oil pump? coolant/water mixture may affect it. not sure trying to help :)

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.
Logan Saunders
1,920

Maybe....is the water pump actually moving the coolant? Are the fans engaging when they're supposed to? Are there any air pockets in the cooling system? Did you add coolant to the radiator or the surge tank? Is the thermostat installed backwards? Are the hoses collasping and restricting coolant flow? Is the radiator defective? Is the car actually overheated when the guage indicates it? Try troubleshooting these additional things.

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.
maddison
250

the fans aren't engaging at all so i hard wired them to toggle switch. and it still overheats. the temp gauge gets to about half where it usually rides, then the heater quits working and starts blowing cold air, then the temp gets just about to the H and then drops back down and the heater will start working again.

9 out of 9 people think this is helpful.
Logan Saunders
1,920

Based upon what you just listed with the heater, I'd estimate that your cooling system hasn't enough coolant in it. The heater blowing cold air is the clue that counts. When there is no hot coolant in the heater core, it will cause the heater to blow COLD AIR! The coolant is LOW! Do this, wait until the car is completely cold. Remove the cap from the radiator and start the engine. OPEN ALL HEATER VALVES TO INCLUDE DEFROST, SET TO MAX TEMPERATURE. When the thermostat opens, the coolant will move into the heater core. This will create empty space in the radiator and force air out the system. (When your heater stopped blowing warm air, it was because the coolant retreated back into the engine where it was needed most due to pressure changes in the sealed system!) Be careful not to get burned because as air exits the system, it will belch hot coolant. Stick with it until you have steady warm air from the heater and a full radiator. Then replace the cap allow to fully cool and check the surge tank. Add more coolant if needed.

7 out of 7 people think this is helpful.
maddison
250

I tried the coolant idea. still no luck. I let it run at least 30 minutes or so adding coolant as needed. The odd thing is it runs at normal temp if its only idoling. it didn't overheat til i got in and drove it.

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.
maddison
250

How can i tell if it the head gasket without tearing apart the motor? I have checked the oil and it doesn't appear to have any coolant mixed in with it and it didn't have that funky smell. I'm running out of ideas other than the head gasket being blown.

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.
sel29wins
50

did u find out tha problem because my car is doing tha same thing. It jus cause a build up of preasure and caused my radiator to burst.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.
acudude
20

Logan545...does this explain why the heater works @ higher revs? (such as highway speed??)

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
Michael Onstad
15

uhh i think thats because the engine heats up.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Dosycar Carter
135

Sounds line you might have air in you cooling system try bleeding it via the bleed screw. make sure you have a bottle of coolant at hand. if that dosent help you might have a high temp thermostat. that opens at a high temperature.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Dosycar Carter
135

my mestake i didnt completly read your writing. if you have a white smoke coming from the exhaust you might have a blown head gasket

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
LegendMan
15

those who got white smoke coming from tail pipe maybe got water leaking mixing to the engine oil. my advised 1st try to treading with a thick oil they sold em at auto part cost only $4-$10 depending bran name. it does said stop smoking, try that first see if getting better then you save a lot money don't have to overhaul head gasket would cost you $750-$1200. once you add that thick oil in should be sound more smoothly and you keep add em everytime when you got your oil change.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
JDG_Pro_Mechanic
30

The 95 Acura Legend is problematic with blown head gaskets, after checking all the normal and cheaper things like the thermostat, sensors, radiator cap and even ensuring the radiator is not plugged. Unfortunately the head gasket is a notorious thing to go on these cars. Note: dont use stop leak at all, it does too good of a job of plugging leaks, it will eventually plug your entire radiator and heater core, which can cause the engine to over heat and seriously damage your engine. If you dont feel confortable with working on it yourself, go see two or three mechanics and have them check it out. Use the one who seems trustworthy and has reputable business, ask your friends or family for a good mechanic, make sure the mechanics are at least ASE certified, hope that helps. JDG, Former Professional Mechanic, moved on to become engineer.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
laducer
20

I got the same problem it's the water pump.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
laducer
20

change your timing belt when u change the water pump

Monique Bell
130

I have a 91 Acura Legend and it is doing the same thing.... While warming up/parked/idol - Temp is great (Normal) when i drive two blocks, my car over heat. i replaced my radiator, relay for the fan, added lots of coolant, the problem is, my fans are not working once i start to drive... Why not?

13 out of 13 people think this is helpful.
zaxbat
10

Blown Head Gasket....99% sure. Passenger side at the back. I had ALL of symptoms listed above and tried all of the band-aid repairs listed above. No good. So I fixed the headgaskets and replaced the water pump. It worked great for a few months, then the water pump went out again. Working on that now. It overheated when the water pump went out, so I hope it didn't hurt anything else.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Crockett013
30

Simple answer that worked for me....remove the thermostat. The engine develops an air pocket at the thermostat rendering it useless. Pull it and be amazed.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
zaxbat
10

Well, may be beyond help. I put in a new water pump and also put new timing belt. Got it all back together. It runs but smokes like crazy. So I think this engine is lost. To get a replacement engine is more expensive than the value of the car..so....time to buy a truck.

Danny Garcia
10

My 91 is doing the same thing as listed replaced everything except the gasket but they did a block test and said was good no leaks and gauge still goes up but they say engine is not getting hot could it be that I'm using non acura parts

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
motorbrain
20

Check your temperature sending unit. It's located opposite side of the coolant sensor. Common problem on this cars.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
motorbrain
20

Check your temperature sending unit sensor. It's located opposite side of the coolant sensor behind the coolant bleeder valve. Common problem on this cars.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Larry Chance
0

If I remove the state on car and run it without it would that be ok

Jessi8331
10

I've been having the same problem lately. The gauge goes all the way to the H then back down to normal. I've replaced the thermostat once but its doing it again. The car even has white smoke coming from the tailpipe. My mechanic friends say the heads are going out. I've only had the car for 4 months and its falling apart. The guy it was bought from said he rebuilt the top of the engine too.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Phill396BB
0

Dealing with the same crap on my gfs 91 legend just replaced the thermostat hoping that's all it is, really don't wana have to do heads on this car

Phill396BB
0

What has been the general issue for this?

zaxbat
10

The engines are notorious for blowing the head gaskets at the rear two cylinders. The headgasket tears near water coolant hole in block-head and allows combustion gases under pressure to blow into the cooling system. The coolant gets way to hot and overflows the coolant resevoir. Then the engine overheats warping the heads and just making the whole thing worser and worser....like a dog chasing its tail. Done! You can buy a new engine from japan with less than 40K miles on it for about a thousand bucks. If you know how to install it (or get someone to install it) it might be worth your trouble if the rest of the car is in good shape.

zaxbat
10

Sorry....not a new engine...another engine would be a better choice of words. I have seen the engines alone or with the transmission for $689-$999 (plus about $125 delivery/shipping charge) in several areas online. My 94 Legend has quite a few other problems, so I probably will not bother with it.

sneezy_speasy
0

I came in looking for answers. My engine was essentially rebuilt not too long ago and then the rising temp thing reared its ugly head yet again. Radiator replaced, then water pump, timing belt, I am beyond mad at my car - a hose blew, all this and now back to its tricks - when idling in traffic - shoots up and then when moving it drops back down.

kiaayo
20

first. if you get air in your cooling system, the idle fluctuates from stalling to 1000 rpm. If you have water instead of coolant, it will give you all kinds of problems(overheating, cold start, rich mixture... on the short term. Long term water without coolant will eat everything it touches). Low oil will make it run hotter too. The oil is there to prevent to metal parts from touching. If oil is too thin or old, it won't do a good job. If you suspect a blown head gasket, go get a shop to do a die test. They put a die that reacts to combustion gases. Do a compression and leakdown test. A leakdown test is like a compression test, but you squirt a little oil down the sparkplug hole. If the compression goes up a lot during a leakdown, bad rings(won't cause overheating). If not, valves, timing or headgasket is the problem with low compression. One giveaway is when two adjacent cylinders are low on compression. What I am trying to say is do a little testing before you just change parts. Every part can be checked. If you don't know how to test a part, look it up. I hear a lot of guys just changing relays for anything that is wrong. Guys, a relay won't fix a flat tire. FYI to test a relay, hook the coil to a 9v battery and test the contacts with an ohmmeter. Also test the coil with the ohmmeter. Relays are only a switch or set of switches that are controlled by a magnet. Not hard to test. Amaze your friends. Disclaimer: If you have a solid state relay(ssr), use other means of testing.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
kiaayo
20

meant air in your coolant will cause idle fluctuations from near stalling to 1000+ rpm.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
Kbby25
0

quick question my 1995 acura 2dr coupe L needs a new sender unit... also other reason for my overheating besides my water pump issue.. where would I find one ?

Jesse Walters
40

Water getting into water jacket through a blown head gasket will cause bubbles that smell like exhaust in your radiator. This exhaust is also under much higher pressure. Water getting into combustion chamber will steam a mirror placed over the spark plug hole while engine is still warm. This 91 to 95 Legend 3.2L needs a really good thermostat as it is a double valve and its operative timing is critical. Stupid design or cheap springs will cause it to recirculate hot water above it over the intake manifold ports if the valves are not properly designed, sending water to the same place it came from. Laser thermometer helps to locate the travel of hot water, and check flow through the top hose with a sight tube. Radiator ribs and bottom hose stay cool & engine boils if you have lack of water or bad thermostat. Lots of places for air to hide in this idiot system.

mech1
0

I have own my 95 legend for 20 years and 300k mileage and have this issue for years and it is always been air trapped in the cooling system. The difference I think that works for me is I tilt, park or you can jack the front end up. By doing so forces the pockets of air out through the radiator while the cap is off. So try that first as my it has worked well for me. Remove Radiator Cap, start car add a little 50 50 mix to fill the gap and watch the bubbles. Good luck

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