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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys, long time no post. 98 GC ZJ 5.2L Laredo that runs hot. 3 radiators, head gaskets, countless t-stats and a water pump later the only thing different is my bank account. I changed out the water pump today and it just seems as though coolant isn't circulating. No heat, potentially blend door actuator, but a new symptom for an old problem. She just gets warmer and warmer until she spikes and overflows out of the coolant reservoir. Even worse under load. Doing a test after the pump replacement, all lines are hot. No leaks and rad cap is hot to the touch. I'm working on bleeding out the system but same issue different repair. Thoughts?
 

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As of COB last night I had ran and let her cool so much there couldn't possibly be any air in there. Got heat back, which is good for the system not so much when it comes to it being in the 90. Took her for a spin this afternoon to load test. Windows up ac cranked and away she went. Best temp on the open road was 220. Just over that in town until I stopped. To be honest, if I had been unable to get heat back a garden hose was my next step. I've been reluctant since I've already spent a king's fortune on coolant and am SAT of babysitting it to bleed the air out of the system. So much wasted time. Being the knucklehead that I am, I realized that I neglected to put the fan shroud back on. I tried to understand the science behind it but math isn't my strong suit but seems like it could be contributing to the overheating. Since I never really considered the importance of the shroud I never second guessed that the previous owner cut out 25% from the bottom corner so they could remove it without pulling the clutch. Sounds silly to type it out... a simple piece of plastic could possibly be the root. Off to the yard in hopes that I don't have to tear the engine apart again. Back to the garden hose, thoughts on a flush? Potentially blockage? The cynic in me says check it for exhaust gasses in the coolant. If that's the case, not my call mama gonna make me sell it. Sad.
 

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try getting a replacement fan shroud first as they make a huge difference in the amount of cooling the fan can do as it will be pulling air through the rad and not around the rad pack, and also the fan hub could be at fault.
you could refit the part you have and make a removable piece to repair it and to make it easier to get on and off in the future :)
 

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Sounds like you've been reading my mind regarding the fan shroud. However, my curiosity got the better of me and I tested it for combustion gas in the coolant. I think you know where I'm going with this. I went with the shops lead wrench and didn't have the heads done when I had the gaskets done. He said they were fine and thought freshened up heads would be too much pressure for a small block with 175k on it. Talked with the shop manager last night and he going to stand behind his work, which is refreshing. Now I need to get my ducks in a row and potentially source a good set of heads on the cheap. The wifes had it... she doesn't hear the vroom of the v8 anymore she hears the shop vac sucking money out of the bank account!
 

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might be better to try and find a complete engine out of a scrapped one, must be some running engines left in crashed cars :)
 

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If I were to go that route I'd just drop the 360 in her. The idea of a big block is seductive. That being said, massive nogo. Even though the shop is going to stand behind their work the wife has put her foot down. Weird thing is, I agree. So much money chasing the same issue. Might be time to fix her and sell. Don't want to, but at what point do I cut losses and quit throwing good money after bad. Don't get me wrong, so much I want to do to her but it's always something.
 

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what type of cooling fan is it running? hydraulic, viscous, electric?

Just been rereading your post and seriously wonder if its just down to a bad fan drive and the busted rad cowling, and unless they flushed the whole cooling system a few times residue coolant gases would still be present and sniff tests are not always reliable.

My 96 4.0 used to boil at times and after one occasion when the thermostat seized shut it steam cleaned (temp well over 260) the whole cooling system and removed the crap in the heater matrix that solved the hot running fault and heater works to well now.
 
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