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Old 02 Oct 2007, 03:58 pm
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Default Honda Civic heating up when stopped?

My 99 Civic heats up, 3/4 way, when I stop at a red light or traffic...but only after ive been driving for over 30minutes. Once I start going again it goes back down or I turn my heater on to help it cool off and it works. Today my check engine light came on. Anyone know why this might be??
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:02 pm
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check ur coolant level.....check ur thermostat....look for leaks
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:04 pm
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Make sure the fan (under the hood) is running when the engine heats up. Don't stick your hands in it, as it may start automatically if it's electric.
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:08 pm
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Its either low coolant, or a bad fan. Let it idle and heat up and see if your fan is running. If its not, it could be a fan motor or the switch. Good luck!
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:10 pm
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Mi has a good answer, once you have determined the coolant levels. The "check engine" light may be telling you that the temperature sensor has gone out.The sensor determines the coolant temperature and when the limit is reached, turns on the engine fan. When you are traveling down the road, the air that is flowing through the radiator is enough to cool the motor. When stopped, the fan is used to do the same thing.By using the heater, it begins to do the job that the engine fan would do. I think that as the days warm up, you may find this option to be less effective, and more uncomfortable.If you take your car to an oil changing place (like Quick Car Lube and Tune) they would be able to help you determine the problem without too much inconvenience.
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:18 pm
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Does your Civic have air conditioning? if it does, then turn it on when the car is running hot and see if the engine temperature drops. On the Civic when you put the air conditioning on it automatically turns on the electric radiator fan, so if the temperature drops with the air conditioning on then the problem is with the temp sensor for the cooling fan. This is not the same coolant temperature sensor that is used for the engine control system. it is a simple temperture controlled switch. If the fan works with the a/c on the temp sender switch is the problem. If the temperature doesn't come down, the problem is with the fan motor provided that the car has coolant in the radiator.you can check the coolant level in the radiator visually. Open the hood and look just behind the bar that the hood latches into and you'll see a long black tube with a silver cap on it. There will be a rubber hose coming out from under the cap leading to a coolant reservoir. That reservoir has marks on the side of it to indicate the level of the coolant. You can add water to the jug if the level is low. VERY IMPORTANT: NEVER REMOVE THE RADIATOR CAP IF THE ENGINE IS WARM OR HOT as you'll get a steam burn or worse.Its not unusual for the top plastic tanks on the civic radiators to crack. If thats the case, you will lose coolant as steam and never see a leak under the car. If the coolant level is low, look for tracks of white around and behind the upper radiator tank. If there is any white powder (mineral residue from the steam) then have the system tested; you'll probably need a radiator if thats the case.The engine control system on your car monitors for overheating conditions. the check engine light is probably being illuminated for either the engine overheat condition or from a misfire caused by a hot engine. It would be unusual if it were not related. repairing the cause of the overheating will cause the engine light to go out after a few days, or the repairing shop can check for the code and clear it if its related to the repair. If its unrelated, they'll let you know that as well.hope that helps
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:24 pm
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Like everyone else says this sounds like a cooling system problem. I'd get it looked at ASAP especially if there is a coolant leak or thermostat malfunction. One of the worse things to do to your car would be to drive it with an overheated engine.
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:27 pm
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Sorry for your problems, ma'am. My heart goes out to you! Why? I am having the same problems with my 1989 Toyota Celica. Well, I have a few suggestions: (1) If you do not smell the engine burning, the fan that cools the engine may be bad. Find someone to take off the fan and go have it tested at a auto parts store like Auto Zone or Reilly's before you just by one. (2) Your Temperature sensor could be bad. It connects to the engine. 3. If you smell the engine "overheating or smoking, check for a bad radiator. 4. Thermostat may be worn or stuck. Very cheap to buy, so start with the thermostat, first. Now, you can do this, but it is a little ghetto. You can straight wire your fan(s) to the battery to make them run at all times. If you do this, buy a toggle switch because you will have to turn this function on when you drive, off when you are done. You are doing the right thing by turning on the heater when it runs hot, but you cannot do this forever! You might end up loosing your car to a blown head gasket, now you want to talk about some money there for one of those!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:32 pm
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check your coolant it can be low the same thing happened to my dad his temp would go all the way up but then his temp wouuld go down while drviving then the jumps and drop became more often so we checked the water and coolant and it was real low so that is your problem or your thermostat is going out
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Old 02 Oct 2007, 04:34 pm
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Usually when the car is in motion the water and coolant get cooled by the oncoming rushing air through the radiator. When the car stops there is no incoming air so the cooling fan kicks in (when the water reaches a certain temperature) to cool it down. Your cooling fan may not be working or your thermostat may be messed up. You better have the car checked immediately or you will have to replace alot engine parts in the long run. Its not difficult problem to fix.
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