car is overheating

Asked by Mar 17, 2013 at 12:36 AM about the 1990 Ford Thunderbird

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

a/c compressor got stuck and broke belt overheated. got new belt bypassed compressor still overheated. installed new thermostat and added antifreeze still overheating

15 Answers


're routed belt conducive to water pump turning and left direction.

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Best Answer Mark helpful

Don't know this for sure. A lot of times there is a belt routing schematic under the hood near the hood latch. Knowing you bipassed the ac It could be that accidentally the new belt was routed wrong. The pully on the pump should turn clockwise when engine is running. It's easy enough to put a thermostat in upsidedown as well.

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This is the routing for a 1990 TBird. How could you bypass the A/C? Click the image and you will see it much better

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Good question, if it even happened, you would need a much shorter belt to even try. You wouldn't think this car would have came without that option. Maybe there is aanother schematic for that.

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There is mrmooney. But still...I can tell with the water pump way up in the corner it's same engine

4 people found this helpful.

Only think I see different is where the alternator is..but the '90 had 2 engines available. And if somehow, someway, he got it on wrong, the water pump could be turning backward if the belt got put on with the ribs on the tensioner, instead of the flat side of the routed underneath instead of over the top with the flat side of belt on water pump. I can actually see how that is possible if the belt is just the right (wrong?) length

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I don't know now if that image on the bottom is right. It is labeled where I got it as 1990 Ford Thunderbird, but studying it I see there is a separate belt and tensioner for the water pump

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From looking at the diagrams, there is no way that you can get the water pump to spin in the wrong direction. --- That leaves a 23 year old overheating engine. My first thoughts are the worn water pump and flushing the radiator.

3 people found this helpful.

I'll buy that. Especially in the bottom image it shows a separate belt for the W/P


I'd suggest unplugging the clutch for the A/C compressor & see if you can get the pulley to spin freely until you can get the compressor replaced. That way you can use the correct belt & route the belt properly. Try gently tapping on the clutch with a hammer if it's stuck. If you don't plan on replacing the A/C compressor there are bypass pulley assemblies available for many vehicles now. That way you can still use the proper belt & route it correctly. I believe, as others have posted, that the water pump is spinning backwards now that the A/C compressor has been bypassed. HTH. -Jim

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You would have to use a idler pully ,its sold in a kit to bypass ac.

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Another thought that just came to mind is that without the A/C compressor perhaps the water pump is spinning too slowly. Accessories have different sized pulleys so they can spin at a rate that will get the job done. HTH. -Jim

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Belt speed same

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Hth jim sounds right,get a compressor or a bypass kit

1 people found this helpful.

i just want to thank all you guys for your help. the belt was routed wrong and now the car is running fine. if it wasnt for all your comments i would still be in trouble

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