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160 degree thermostat vs a 180 degree

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  • Cool/Heat: 160 degree thermostat vs a 180 degree

    I'm thinking about changing my thermostat on a 63 Avanti to a 160 degree. I'm a little skiddish about old cars getting hot and I thought that buffer between 160 and 212 might be a good thing. Is there any detriment to doing this? Thanks Tom

  • #2
    If your car is overheating with a 180 degree thermostat, It will still overheat with a 160.
    The thermostat just determines that 160 degree coolant enters the radiator.
    The radiator, water pump, circulation of water through the block, and the possible lack of circulation due to sediment build up, determine if it will STAY at the thermostats opening temp.
    Also, the timing of the ignition can affect temps.
    Bez Auto Alchemy
    573-318-8948
    http://bezautoalchemy.com


    "Don't believe every internet quote" Abe Lincoln

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    • #3
      i'd go with the saturn air deflector first as already discussed: http://forum.studebakerdriversclub.c...ghlight=saturn

      you'll probably get many pros & cons about dropping it to 160. if there was a overheating problem after the deflector, i'd consider it. did it on my '80 vette w/no problems. (apples and oranges?)
      Kerry. SDC Member #A012596W. ENCSDC member.

      '51 Champion Business Coupe - (Tom's Car). Purchased 11/2012.

      '40 Champion. sold 10/11. '63 Avanti R-1384. sold 12/10.

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      • #4
        If you live in a climate where it gets to +32*F or colder, with a 160* Stat the Engine will not heat up enough for efficient running, fast warm-up and good Heater output.
        These are usually known as "Summer" or warm weather Thermostats.

        Studebaker had the answer to this issue, they Factory Installed 170* Stats in most of their Cars, figuring the compromise would work most places, maybe not Alaska though.
        It is too bad those are NLA now.

        A good clean, well functioning Studebaker cooling system can easily take an operating Temp. of 200* or more without issues, but it becomes more difficult with today's Alcohol "inhanced" Fuels.
        StudeRich
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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        • #5
          If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

          As already said, a 160 degree thermostat changes the minimum operating temperature of the engine, not the maximum. If it has an overheating problem, all that will change is it will take a little longer before overheating.

          There is something you might do...get a "failsafe" thermostat that's designed in a way that if it fails, it fails in the open position, not closed. Still...if your car is running too hot, get it diagnosed and taken care of. Anything else is just a band-aid.
          Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, cocky and in general a malcontent.

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          • #6
            To: Buck,--------------- Some vehicles tend to run a bit warmer than we'd like without ever really overheating. Just the nature of the animal. If Your vehicle is one of those, and You run it mostly in warm weather, go with the 160. It initiates
            the cooling process sooner.

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            • #7
              Just got a new thermostat for my Lark. Read the Stude shop manual & a 'Motors' manual from '61 to make sure I knew what I wanted(or needed). Both said if you use 'permanant type' antifreeze a 180 is required. If you use 'alcohol type' antifreeze a 160 is required. I think all modern antifreeze it 'permanant type'. Not sure you can buy 'alcohol type' antifreeze anymore.

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              • #8
                a 160 thermostat wont allow the engine to get enough heat in it to help burn off the gases and such left over byteh combustion proccess, leading to a much dirtier internals.

                180 is what you need, if it overheats with that you need to fix the issues causing the overheating.
                http://datinmanspeaks.blogspot.com/

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                • #9
                  You might want to verify that your temperature gauge is accurate. This is easy with an infared(sp) gun. Make sure the ground strap at the right front motor support is clean and tight. Also check for a good tight clean connection of the wire terminal at the sending unit. It is located in the rear of the left cylinder head. Hope this helps.

                  Dan Miller
                  Auburn, GA

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                  • #10
                    I run 180 year round. But gas is getting worse every year, so maybe a few degrees less wouldn't hurt. Seems like the vapor lock issue is getting to a point where we may eventually have to do an EFI conversion or something. I plan to reinstall the fuel return line this spring on both Studes, after disconnecting them several years ago here on the east coast.

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                    • #11

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                      • #12
                        Todrnec,---------------That's good information............Do You know which Honda models?...........Thanks!

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                        • #13
                          my 2 cents worth. My Studebaker m (with 350 chevy motor) wanted to overheat in town driving.Never went over 210, but still made me uneasy. I finally noticed air could go around my radiator, after plugging those areas ,and following a friend's suggestion ( install a 180 stat with a 1/8 hole drilled in flange) my truck does not overheat and I might drive up to 10 miles before I get to the 180 temp. Just look everything over and make sure everything is working as intended. (the hole also keeps air pockets out of motor when filling the radiator)
                          Randy Wilkin
                          1946 M5 Streetrod
                          Hillsboro,Ohio 45133

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                          • #14
                            I use a 180 deg thermostat in all of the Studebaker engines I maintain. The higher temperature thermostat will bring up the oil temperature enough for the contaminants to boil off. Using a lower temperature thermostat will not reduce the chance for a boil over, it just lengthens the time it takes for the coolant to overheat. I use a 180 deg thermostat in my Avanti and even in Southern California in the summer, it doesn't run hot. If a Studebaker engine runs hot, there are other problems and installing a lower temperature thermostat is just a Band Aid. Bud

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bud View Post
                              I use a 180 deg thermostat in all of the Studebaker engines I maintain. The higher temperature thermostat will bring up the oil temperature enough for the contaminants to boil off. Using a lower temperature thermostat will not reduce the chance for a boil over, it just lengthens the time it takes for the coolant to overheat. I use a 180 deg thermostat in my Avanti and even in Southern California in the summer, it doesn't run hot. If a Studebaker engine runs hot, there are other problems and installing a lower temperature thermostat is just a Band Aid. Bud
                              I couldn't have said it any better.

                              Joe
                              sigpic

                              1962 Daytona
                              1964 Cruiser
                              And a few others

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