View Full Version : Engine Running Hot!

11-20-2004, 10:10 PM
Here goes: My 95 SC has 81k miles on it. I have put the last 30K on the vehicle, and when I drive, I'm in the habit of watching the guages. For the last 30K miles, the engine temp guage has always sat directly centered between the lower "normal" line, and the "NORM" letters. (when on the highway; outside temp was almost always irrevelant) Lately, the guage has really been crowding the NORM letters, and when around town, the fan is almost always on. When the fan is running, the engine does cool, but quickly heats back up to a little past the middle, when the fan comes on. This is not just sitting in trafic either, but moving at 40-45MPH, and back to stop, accelerate again, etc. A week ago, I noticed a leak in my aftermarket brass radiator. It was reapired and cleaned, but the warm problem still persists. I have always had a 196* thermostat in it, and replaced it when the radiator was out. (This is the factory thermo no?) Anyway, my greatest fear is those two words... (Head Gaskets!! :eek: ) but I'm really hoping for a clogged hose or something. Any ideas?

11-20-2004, 11:23 PM
The stock gauges arent really acruate. I've had mine go a little past the M with no problems. Do a "search" on this. There are tons threads on this. Get yourself some after market gauges if you want a true reading.

Mike Puckett
11-21-2004, 12:01 AM
It sounds normal to me. Your's is doing exactly what mine has always done. Unless the gauge is on the far right side, well past NORM it's not really overheating. Plus, the red check gauge light will come on if it really is overheating. If you're really concerned flush the cooling system, replace the temp sensor, and refill with fresh antifreeze and water wetter. Otherwise I wouldn't be concerned.

XR7 Dave
11-21-2004, 11:17 AM
It is my "opinion" that Ford recalibrated the way the gauges read on the 94-95's. My logic is that people were going back to the dealer complaining that the temp gauge was reading high, so instead of fixing the problem, they recalibrated the gauge to read lower in those years. This is the exact same reasoning that went behind the oil pressure guage/pressure switch thing Ford did. They percieved that people would be worried by a low oil pressure reading at idle so they made the switch simply read "normal" at anything over 11psi.

The reason I bring this up is that I have observed the temp gauges on the many 89-93 SC's that I have owned or serviced. In general on those cars the "N" corresponds to about 185-190 degrees and the "M" corresponds to about 225 and the car will boil over when the needle reaches the red or the line just below it.

However, it has been my experience on the 95's that I have worked on that 190 degrees is well below the N, in fact it is about 1 needle above the line above the blue, and by the time you reach the "M" the motor has exceeded 230 degrees and will boil over.

You may very well be experiencing very elevated temperatures. You should find a more reliable way of measuring temperatures. I would suggest that once you determine the source of your problem, you get a 180 degree thermostat and a chip to control the fans so that 190-195 degrees is maintained. Running at 220+ degrees which is what you may be doing now is a sure recipe for blown headgaskets in short order.


11-29-2004, 04:28 AM
Thank you all for your answers, and I have "solved" my problem. When I posted this thread, I should have added that with the repaired radiator and new thermostat, I also changed the coolant and added Water Wetter. The temp now reads what it always did (after a few days for the system to stabilize and stop taking coolant out of the reservoir... no leaks, just air pockets, and I even burped it!)

What you're saying Dave has me interested (and a little worried.) So I have a couple of questions pertaining to that... First, will a 180deg thermostat cause the EEC to run the car in "cold" mode in very cold weather when the engine temp would be forced to hover around 180? (I.E. on the freeway, 30 degrees ambient temp, 70MPH)? Whereabouts do I get one of those chips that control the fans? Finally, I don't believe I've ever seen the outboard "pusher" fan come on - what conditions necessitate this? Will the chip turn them both on? Do I have to heavily mod my rare bird to install this chip? Sorry to bombard you, but I don't want to overhaul my top end anytime soon, so I need to learn now... Thanks for all your help!