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Author Topic: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)  (Read 197 times)

herdfan75

  • Jr. Member
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  • Posts: 75
    • 94 Capri XR2

Hi folks!  So very happy to be back here.  I own a 94 dark charcoal grey XR2 Capri that I just bought back yesterday.  I owned this car a few years ago and stupidly sold it.  It's not quite as good of shape as it was, but mostly cosmetic.  I live in WV, and drove it back from Frederick Maryland yesterday.  The car has developed a weird overheating problem that it did not have before (it appears the car has set for a couple of years, only being driven sporadically).

While driving back, I noticed that the car would run hotter and hotter while pulling hills on the interstate.  Once it got so hot I had to pull over.  I didn't allow it to get into the read so as not to warp the head.  I checked the coolant, and it's full.  There is good flow when I pulled the cap off the radiator with no bubbles.  No water on the dipstick, and it runs like a champ.  On flat ground and coming downhill, the temp returned to normal (sits in the middle of the gauge).  Just to be safe at to get it home, I pulled the wire off the fan switch to make the fan run all the time.  It still caused the gauge to run in the upper 3/4 of the gauge on long hills, but I was able to get it home. 

The weird part is, in town and in traffic, it doesn't get hot.  It only only does it when the engine is under a heavier load pulling a long hill.  And forget using the air conditioner.  Even with the fan running all the time.

Where would you guys start?  I planned on flushing the coolant system (I assume you do this the same on these cars as you would any other) and replacing the thermostat.  I've always heard that when thermostats go bad they are supposed to stick in the open position, but I've had them fail before and restrict some flow.  It just seems like there isn't sufficient flow under engine load.  The fan seems to be running fine and is moving a ton of air when it's on.

Thanks!
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blueamber

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Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2018, 01:19:03 AM »

I drove a 94 xr2 in the mountains out west once, the turbo was on a lot, and it heated up much more than on flat land.

Yeah, if it sat for years, then a good flush may be all it needs.  You might also verify timing is correct.
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herdfan75

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  • Posts: 75
    • 94 Capri XR2
Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2018, 10:15:40 AM »

Yea, I know the XR2s run a little warm, but this was getting so hot that I had to keep pulling over so as not to overheat it.  The gauge was almost in the red (and I could tell with how it was running that it was getting too warm).

I assume I check the timing like any other car, correct? Timing light and such?  It starts and runs fantastic so I doubt that's a problem, but I will definitely check it.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2018, 10:27:12 AM by herdfan75 »
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belleaudb

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  • Posts: 37
    • 92 XR2
Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2018, 08:47:42 PM »

My 92 would get hot at highway speeds not into the red but alarmingly high. I pulled the radiator to find the fins half clogged with cottonwood tree fuzz.

I cleaned it, which helped.

 A new Spectra Premium radiator performed only marginally better than the 23 year old original radiator. I eventually installed a OPL custom 3 row aluminum radiator. The engine runs cool at all speeds even with the a/c on. I have idled for long times in 90+ degree temps without issue. When the cooling fan comes on, it only runs for about 10 seconds before turning off.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2018, 11:23:25 AM by belleaudb »
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Rocketman

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    • 91 BPT AWD Capri & 1991 XR2
    • http://www.werbatfik.com
Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2018, 04:12:38 PM »

Shouldn't be getting that hot. Flush the system and replace the t-stat and see where you're at.
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1.8L Turbo All Wheel Drive Capri... the "GTXR2"


herdfan75

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  • Posts: 75
    • 94 Capri XR2
Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2018, 04:22:46 PM »

I agree.  I let it run in the driveway the other night with the air on while I worked on the interior and it never went over half.  So it must be a circulation problem.
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herdfan75

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  • Posts: 75
    • 94 Capri XR2
Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2018, 03:21:36 PM »

I drove it this weekend and sure enough, it began running too hot on the interstate but did fine in stop and go traffic (in 87 degree heat).  So I'm sure it's a circulation problem.  I'll flush everything as I said and install a new thermostat (and probably a new fan switch while I'm at it just in case the one on the car now is a little lazy).  Hopefully this will fix it!
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Rocketman

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Re: 1994 Capri weird overheating only under heavy load (not in traffic)
« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2018, 10:45:30 PM »

It does indeed sound like a circulation problem.
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1.8L Turbo All Wheel Drive Capri... the "GTXR2"