2000 Camry overheating


Asked by Aug 24, 2014 at 07:28 PM about the 2000 Toyota Camry LE

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

As soon as I drive the car, within 30 secs, temperature gauge goes to halfway mark
and then within 5 mins settles at slightly higher than the halfway mark. I thought the
temperature shouldn't rise so fat and when it settles it should read slightly lower than
the halfway mark.

I replaced the gauge sensor, I checked the sender, it is working resistance decreases
as car heats up, it starts with 650 ohms and settles at 80 ohms.

radiators fans work. I checked with A/C on and when the engine was idling. Car has
100 K miles. Thermostat seems to open up, When I touch top and bottom hoses, they
both are warm.

Engine oil is not milky, coolant level is OK, the radiator was burped.

Baffles as to what could be problem. Most common cause is thermostat, but if that
was the case, you wouldn't feel the bottom hose warm. I don't know about the water
pump. I just got the car and don't know what has been done by the previous owner.

22 Answers


From what you said i think you may need to put a water pump in it,and need to do it sooner than later,could cost you way more than a pump if it continue,s to run warm.

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.
Best Answer

Hi TST, May I know the logic behind why you think it is water pump? Is it because temperature rises fast?? Initially till the car warms up, thermostat is not open so the water pump doesn't do much. right? Just curious to know why you think it is water pump. May be it is not moving enough volume.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

Just a thought here....I have never worked on the newer Camrys, but if they are anything like the mid 90's Camrys, I would definately change out the timing belt also. If it's never been done, it's about time. I would ask the old owner if it was ever done. Will save you a ton of money in the long run. You can order a timing kit online for around $230 if you do it yourself. You should get a belt, water pump, and new pulleys in the kit. I'm guessing it was never done since it has been suggested that you change out the pump. The mechanic will have to take off the timing belt cover to change out the pump anyhow, so while he's in there, you may has well have him do the job right and do the timing belt and pulleys.


I don't know where you are getting $230, I'm getting OEM kit at advanced auto parts for $125, Am I missing something? As long as it says it is OEM, it should be good correct?


Yes, I just quickly looked up a kit. They do run from the price you found up to the price I found.


From the picture I posted in OP. Do you guys think the temperature is normal? It seems to be around 6 on 0-10 scale. If this is not normal; what is normal 4?? Trying to get some reference. Also if the bottom radiator hose and cold and after a while when thermostat opens up I can feel it is getting warm. Doesn't that indicate the T-stat is working fine? Let's say even if it opens late, but it does open. I could understand if the temperature would be high and then drop down when t-stat opens up. That would indicate the t-stat is opening late. unless there is possibility that it opens up but partially.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Water pump,s ,sometime,s go,s bad slowly,not pumping the right amount of water threw the engine properly,you said both hose,s top and bottom were warm,that mean,s thermostat is open,the only other thing,s that beside,s the water pump will do this is a blowed head or intake gasket,and it heat,s up fast,put the pump on it,and i hope that i am correct on this,because the other two thing,s i said will cost you alot more,Good luck with it.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I like the pump idea. When you start the engine in the morning, and then start driving within 1 min the gauge is at halfway mark and then within 5 mins it reaches the position show. I thought this is fast. Usually it should take few mins for temperature gauge to reach its final point. Does this rapid temperature rise tell anyone anything? unless it is normal on Camrys.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

It mean,s if it heat,s up fast the pump is not doing it,s job correctly.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Okay you lost me there. In first few minutes, the thermostat is not open, so whether pump is working or not should not make any difference. correct? unless it circulates coolant within the engine without going out to the radiator through thermostat. I would like to know how this works.


Pump works,from the get go,yes it doe,s not circulate until thermostat open,s,but pump circulate,s in engine intake and head,until this happen,s.And if it is not pumping right when it open,s,that,s where you get the sudden,jump in temp.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Thanks After driving for 15 mins this morning, I stopped by and checked the top and bottom radiator hoses. The top one was hot to touch, the bottom one was cold. When I idled for few more mins then the bottom hose started getting warm. I assume this indicates, erratic thermostat operation? Also noticed temperature fluctuates between 5 and 8 on scale of 10(10 being H mark on the gauge) Radiator Fans don't kick in till the gauge is at 8 is this normal?

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Yes that is normal,usually fan,s kick on about the same time thermostat open,s.


Are you sure? Now I'm confused. Usually you never see your gauge go up to 8 but you know fans kick in before that. Do you think my Coolant sender may be wrong? I replaced it with one from Advanced auto part and it may not be OEM.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

There are two sending unit,s one for fan,s one for tempreture,you sure you replaced the correct one,and in the right place,they look alike,and if one is in wrong place you will get wrong reading?

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.


3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I replaced the white one. The one with one wire (yellow/green), I know this is the one goes to gauge for sure. When I ground this connector guage reads H. I hooked potentiometer to this connecter and watch gauge go from C to H as the resistance decreases. The green one I believe goes to computer for fuel/air mixture and 3rd one at the bottom of the radiator should control fans. Is it possible the fans are coming little too late? I had a cap off and idles the engine for 15 mins and checked the temperature it never went beyond 180F. I thought it shouldn't take 15 mins on 75 deg day cruising at 55 MPH to open a thermostat.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

You are correct,and if you haven,t replaced the fan sensor,could be doing this as you say,reading wrong and cutting fan,s on late.


or it's possible that the sender unit I have is not compatible with denso cluster gauge. The resistance curve has to match with the gauge calibration. May be everything is fine except the gauge is reading high due to incompatible sender unit. I may need to use OEM part. What do you think?

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

You could be right,some after market sensors, do not match to guage,if it doe,s not run any higher than where your pic is showing,you may be on to your problem,which is really just getting a false reading.

Try a radiator flush at your local oil change place. Your ports could be clogged.

I had this issue, turned out a ground wire was loose, cleaned and reattached it and no more flucuation, i was very happy

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