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View Full Version : Engine: Thermostat in... still running hot!



cultural infidel
07-03-2012, 01:44 PM
I was wondering which thermostat is preferred for the 283 in my 65. I see that a 160 and 180 are both offered. Will it make any difference in the performance of the car?

The car has been running hot or at least high, assuming the gauge is accurate. So I was planning on replacing the t-stat and the temp sending unit.

Thoughts?

cultural infidel
07-03-2012, 03:17 PM
does this look like it could be the right unit to purchase?
http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/CatalogItemDetail.aspx?R=BK_7012373_0075111242

Bud
07-03-2012, 04:43 PM
I like to use a 180 deg thermostat in my engines and the engines I service. The 180 degree stat will bring the oil temperature up to where the contaminants in the oil will boil off. If the engine runs hot, check for crud in the radiator and block and be sure that the distributor is in good shape and the timing is set correctly. A 160 degree only prolongs the time it takes for the engine to run hot if there are other problems with the engine or cooling system. Bud

cultural infidel
07-03-2012, 05:08 PM
Thanks for the heads up. I found that the 180 was the "OEM Suggested" according to Stant. How would I go about checking for crud in the Radiator and Block?

Can you tell if that is the sending unit that I need?

Bud
07-04-2012, 08:16 AM
That looks like the correct sending unit, but I would still go by what is recommended in the parts book. You can run the engine until the thermostat opens and the radiator warms up. Place your hand over several spots on the front of the radiator or the back if the engine is not running to check for hot and cooler spots along the surface of the radiator. It will be warmer toward the upper part of the radiator and cooler toward the bottom. If the core is fairly clean, there won't be hot or cold spots in the center or edges. If you can get the block drain plugs out of the block, you can determine if there is crud in the block. If the drain plugs won't come out, then you have to remove a couple of freeze plugs to have a look. Bud

sweetolbob
07-04-2012, 11:11 AM
CI

I agree with Bud about the sending unit and looking for hot spots. Let me make an easy suggestion to cleaning the system. Your FLAPS sells radiator cleaner/flush that you add to the cooling system to clean it out.

I'd suggest draining your system to see how bad the color is, add water and system flush and see what it looks like then. A couple of more flushes and antifreeze may be all it needs.

I've worked on a lot of SBC's over the years and if you can get the block drains out that helps. 1/4" pipe plug on each side of the lower/center of the block. I've never had one as bad as some of the folks describe their Stude blocks but I'm sure it can happen.

Bob

SN-60
07-04-2012, 11:26 AM
To: cultural infidel,---(I love that name!) Back when Studebakers were still being made, most thermostat manufacturers offered a 'summer' and a 'winter' spec thermo. They did this for a reason. In the hot
summer months, it makes perfect sense to run a 160' stat. in Your engine. The only downside to doing this is that in areas where You have a change of season, such as New England, a 180'-190' would need to be
swapped in towards winter.

cultural infidel
07-09-2012, 10:56 AM
Thanks for all of the input and suggestions fellas. I went out and purchased a new thermostat (the 160 as Ed suggested for the summer months) that I need to put in once I get the time to do so. My uncle suggested running without one for the rest of summer to loosen all the crud up and then doing an engine flush at the end of August. Then putting a new thermostat on then. Is this a good idea?

Hopefully I can pull the temp sending unit and take it into my NAPA and match it up to something that they have. I will be replacing the sending unit wire as well since it has been mangled over the years.

BTW - Thanks for the compliment on the name Ed. Long time Parrothead and the name has always seemed to fit me. If I could edit my name on all of my other boards, I would.

rodnutrandy
07-09-2012, 11:41 AM
I have mentioned this before,but seems to help. I drilled a 1/8 inch hole in stat flange. That lets air out, and flows a little water all the time. It really slows down temperature rise and see no bad side effects. Doesn't change temp overall.

Neal in NM
07-09-2012, 01:39 PM
I personally would go with the higher thermostat because of the temperature differential needed to get efficient cooling when it is hotter. Check out what I wrote a couple of years ago on a similar matter, pressurized radiator caps. Neal


http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.com/showthread.php?5893-Pressurized-or-non-pressurized-radiator-cap&p=124535&viewfull=1#post124535

raprice
07-09-2012, 02:11 PM
I know that you can go to NAPA, but Studebaker International has the sending units. I always prefer to support Stude vendors whenever possible. I needed to replace the sending unit in my Lark a few years ago and Stude Int'l sent the correct unit. All along, I thought my car was overheating, when the real culprit was the sending unit. Go figure.
Rog

cultural infidel
07-16-2012, 10:35 PM
New tstat installed. Still running hot. I forgot to drill a hole into the stat, so I may end up doing that after we move.

I'm pulling the sending unit tonight to take to Napa tomorrow so that we can match it up. Next step is the flush.

Would a fan shroud help with the running hot issue?

My lack of free time after work is slowing my progress on the issue.

Pat Dilling
07-17-2012, 12:26 AM
Next question is when does it run hot? Is it only in traffic? Running down the road, highway speeds, lower speeds? What is your outside temp when it shows hot, and how hot is hot? How long does it take it to get hot? There are a number of auto repair businesses that have coolant system flushing equipment, this will usually do a much better job and much faster than doing it your self. It more or less pressure washes the inside of your cooling system, they will put a flushing chemical in first, then do the flush. They also collect the residue which is better than letting it run down your driveway/gutter.

Pat

cultural infidel
07-17-2012, 12:44 AM
Next question is when does it run hot? Is it only in traffic? Running down the road, highway speeds, lower speeds? What is your outside temp when it shows hot, and how hot is hot? How long does it take it to get hot? There are a number of auto repair businesses that have coolant system flushing equipment, this will usually do a much better job and much faster than doing it your self. It more or less pressure washes the inside of your cooling system, they will put a flushing chemical in first, then do the flush. They also collect the residue which is better than letting it run down your driveway/gutter.

Pat

Pat -
It runs hot the longer I drive it. It does get hotter quicker in stop n go traffic. It usually is fairly hot by the time that I get to work in the morning (~14 miles). By the time I get home at night it is pipin hot. The over-flow hose was spraying a bit tonight when I got home. One thing that drives me nuts is the Temp Gauge doesnt show actual temps, so I dont know exactly how hot it is getting..... the needle keeps on rising near the upper end! I plan to have someone else do the flush so that I know it is done properly.

Just went to pull my sending unit and most of it appears to be missing or rusted away! Hard to match something up when most of it is missing! I hope the missing pieces have disintegrated into nothing and haven't caused havoc to the internals.

Bud
07-17-2012, 07:40 AM
I would recommend doing a test for a combustion leak into the cooling system. Most radiator shops can do that for you. I'm thinking that you have a leaky head gasket or a crack in either the block or a head which will cause the problems you are having. Bud

cultural infidel
07-17-2012, 09:46 AM
Hoping that it is only the gasket if that is the issue. Not sure that I could afford to fix the cracked block or head issue.

rodnutrandy
07-17-2012, 01:21 PM
If you are thinking leaky gasket, you might try Bars Leak. Its a pellet sealer that does no harm to engine and disappears after time,but is great at sealing leaks. I have sealed both head gasket leaks (340 Cuda) and radiator leaks over the years. I have so much faith in it, I add a bottle after rebuilding a motor. Any leak I seal never comes back.

cultural infidel
07-17-2012, 01:58 PM
If you are thinking leaky gasket, you might try Bars Leak. Its a pellet sealer that does no harm to engine and disappears after time,but is great at sealing leaks. I have sealed both head gasket leaks (340 Cuda) and radiator leaks over the years. I have so much faith in it, I add a bottle after rebuilding a motor. Any leak I seal never comes back.
Where can I find this? Do I add it to the Rad? or oil?

ROADRACELARK
07-17-2012, 02:00 PM
While you're checking the circuitry of the temp. gauge, also check the condition of the ground strap and its connections to the block and the frame are clean and making a good connection. With the Stude V8 it's located at the right front motor support, with the Chevy engine I'm not sure of the location. Definately worth checking out. It can cause inaccuracy with any of the electrical gauges. Hope this helps.

Dan Miller
Auburn, GA

rodnutrandy
07-17-2012, 02:37 PM
I find Bars leak at Walmart, Advance auto, carquest around here (Ohio) . Also found it at some service statios. It goes in the radiator. Should be able to go on their website and find dealers. Let me know what you find out. http://barsproducts.com/catalog/view/1-liquid-radiator-stop-leak-10-oz-c16/testimonials I used the radiator stop leak shown on left when you go to the website posted.

cultural infidel
07-17-2012, 02:57 PM
Do you know which one you used for the head gasket. It seems that there are quite a few options

62champ
07-17-2012, 04:35 PM
I was always taught that overheating is one of two problems - flow of coolant or flow of air. If your part of the world was having a summer like the rest of us are - you would have boiled it over two months ago...

An infrared thermometer might give you a better idea about accurate temperature readings as well.

cultural infidel
07-17-2012, 04:36 PM
summer heat is not an issue here. I think we have topped out at 80 once. been mid 60's for the most part.

Mike Van Veghten
07-17-2012, 05:50 PM
cultural -

What is your ignition timing set at ?

Low initial timing will -
1. Cause higher thAn normal coolant temperatures
2. Sluggish performance
3. Poor gas milage

Now...I don't mean..."by the book" timing. I mean...give the engine what it wants. Normally, the Chevy engine will run well with 10 degrees initial timing or 38 to 40 degrees total, on the street.
8 is ok, but if you are running 4 to 6 with the timing light, the engine will run at a higher coolant temp thAn it should.

Another thing....Anti-freeze or Ethylene glycol. The "normal..." 50% - 50%" mix is too much. Ethylene glycol does NOT transfer heat...water does. I've run a 20% E.G. to 80% water for many years in my cars and motorcycles with very good results.

You also need a fan that pulls a lot of air thru the radiator. If you have a cheap fan or one that looks pretty...it might not be pulling enough air. Large blades with a lot of curvature is needed.

So there's three things to look at...

Good luck.

Mike

Gunslinger
07-17-2012, 06:24 PM
Start with some easy and basic stuff first. Check the belts...are they loose? How old is the water pump? It doesn't need to be leaking to be bad. Do a pressure test on the system...including the radiator cap. If the cap isn't holding pressure the boiling point lowers. If the system isn't holding pressure, look for an external or internal leak. External leaks could be a loose hose clamp, gasket, etc. An internal leak could be a head gasket or cylinder head as already mentioned.

Does the exhaust smell sweet and like coolant? If it does, that confirms a head gasket or cylinder head problem. You can pull the spark plugs and see if any are wet with coolant. Usually you'll find two spark plugs side by side having that issue.

I know there's a lot of things or combinations of things that can cause your problem. Start with the most basic and easy and work your way up.

cultural infidel
07-19-2012, 11:09 AM
This is why I love this site. You guys have so many ideas for me to check out.

Things I know that I need as of now:
-New Fan Belt
-New Rad Cap (never noticed how loose the original was)
-New Temp Sending Unit (I know I said that I would get this the other night, unfortunately some family came in from out of town for a surprise visit, had to sign papers on the new house, and the new baby are very time consuming right now!)
-I will check the timing out. I have never done this before so I will be reading up how to properly do it. Any tips or info on how to perform this operation?
-Going to try out the Bars Leak as a preventative measure to see if it helps at the head gasket

The fan is the original to the car unit. Nothing pretty by any means. So I assume that it should be adequate if it is original.

rodnutrandy
07-19-2012, 11:33 AM
One addition, If your lark is stock ,this shouldn't be a issue. If air can get around the radiator ,instead of going thru it, it will. be sure air has to go thru the radiator and has no way to go around it.

cultural infidel
07-24-2012, 11:40 AM
New belt is going on tonight, bars leak is in as of this morning - still over heating a bit.

Still locating the temp sender - the one that I thought it was from NAPA was incorrect. The head size is 7/8". Has been a bugger to track down.

slowly tracking stuff down as time permits

cultural infidel
07-24-2012, 11:59 AM
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/SMP-TS6/

can anyone tell me if this looks like the correct part?

sweetolbob
07-24-2012, 12:41 PM
http://www.summitracing.com/parts/SMP-TS6/

can anyone tell me if this looks like the correct part?

CI

The hole in your head OOPS!!:D The hole in your SBC's head should be 1/2" NPT (Pipe Thread). If your sensor is smaller just get an adapter bushing to fit the sensor you have or just go back to NAPA and tell them you want the one for your thread and an SBC. Put it in and hook it up to your gauge.

On your way back from NAPA, stop by the dollar store and get a thermometer and drop it in the radiator with the cap off to watch the temp. Start the car with the cap off and let it heat up. If the gauge and thermometer agree within a few degrees, put the cap back on and drive it. You will then know what the real temp is and we can go from there.

I have no problem with Summit, I buy from them routinely, but you will pay shipping for no reason. NAPA has what you need. Or any other FLAPS in your area for that matter.

Bob

cultural infidel
07-24-2012, 01:10 PM
http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/CatalogItemDetail.aspx?R=BK_7011813_0361182620
They have this one with the 1/2" NPT but different top. For this one, would I just have to put a different end on to the wire?

sweetolbob
07-24-2012, 03:15 PM
http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/CatalogItemDetail.aspx?R=BK_7011813_0361182620
They have this one with the 1/2" NPT but different top. For this one, would I just have to put a different end on to the wire?

CI

The one you show from Summit is correct for your 65, (SMP TS6). The comparable Airtex/ Wells # is (1T1053) according to Rock Auto. I would think you could find one from your FLAPS. If not, the Summit one is the one you want. In any case, Replace the wire end contact when you install the new one to be sure you have good contact.

Good Luck, Bob

cultural infidel
07-24-2012, 03:48 PM
I went ahead and ordered the Summit one since I know it is correct. I could have saved a few bucks by going through Rock Auto, but I have never been let down through Summit before. No one at the local Napa could really understand what I was trying to explain to them. I will pick up a new wire and connector for when it gets here.

Thanks Bob!

Chucks Stude
07-24-2012, 04:10 PM
You sure you want to run a radiator stop leak? I think some of this is the result of such a product. Also, please get the remote thermometer. Really helps to know what is really going on.

http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc42/Dragasaurus/Studebaker%20Repair%20Pictures/DSC01617.jpg

http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc42/Dragasaurus/Studebaker%20Repair%20Pictures/DSC01616.jpg

sweetolbob
07-24-2012, 06:19 PM
I went ahead and ordered the Summit one since I know it is correct. I could have saved a few bucks by going through Rock Auto, but I have never been let down through Summit before. No one at the local Napa could really understand what I was trying to explain to them. I will pick up a new wire and connector for when it gets here.

Thanks Bob!

CI

I was only using the Rock Auto site for reference as I've also had excellent results with Summit.

The more I see posts like this the more I appreciate my local FLAPS (Euclid Auto Parts) which has been owned by brothers for years. I can take in about any auto part, throw it on the counter and they just go to the back and bring out the correct part.

My brother had an old Hagie Harvester with an unknown engine that needed a carb rebuild and he couldn't find a kit.

Took it into Euclid Auto, threw it on the desk. Don says "Holley one barrel about 72" should take kit XXX_XXXX. Checks his books, says Yep that's it' walks to the back room and brings the parts back.

I think I'm spoiled and I'll sure be disappointed when they're gone.

Bob

cultural infidel
07-25-2012, 02:00 PM
Seems like the big boy stores have pushed the little guys out around here... or I just havent found the right one. There is a NAPA near my new house and those guys seem to be on the money every time I go in. Unfortunately, I am not in the new house yet! Hopefully this weekend we will be.

On another note, would a fan shroud help in this situation? Did they offer one for these years? Or are they even necessary? I have had a few cars over the years that came without one.

cultural infidel
07-27-2012, 01:20 PM
another thought that I was wondering about... Could the heat riser cause overheating if it is stuck open/shut? Would this cause any other issues in the motor?