Engine temp too high ... in winter [PLS HELP!]

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My Name: soewhaty

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Model: C3 2006-2009, Facelift model
Year: 2006 (06)
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10x guys! So yeah ... as i said .. having the 'A/C' button pressed makes no difference for me .. both with hot and cold air. Even if the button is not pressed both hot and cold air are supplied on demand.
You have some sort of fault as in the summer without A/C you get outside temperature air being blown into the cabin. When you press the A/C button, you can select a temperature for the cabin that is well below the outside air temperature.
- no idea what it is ...
Warming the cabin is free, cooling the cabin costs.
10x, good tip and good to know
My Name: soewhaty

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Model: C3 2006-2009, Facelift model
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Gearbox: Manual 5 speed
DPF: No
LHD or RHD: LHD (Europe)

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Well ... here's the continuation of the problem now. I assume it's a thermostat that is clogged up or messed up? Why do I think so (and you are totally welcome to correct me and advise me)? Because as I was doing an easy run for 20min at about ... 50km/h average, everything with the heating worked well and hot air was actually blowing in. So that indicated to me that the engine cooling system is working well. It was nice and warm in the car and crazy cold outside. 20 minutes later, I started on what was supposed to be a long journey at about 90km/h average. I did that for 20min or so and all of a sudden the nice warm air that was blowing in STOPPED and some significantly less warm air started blowing. And immediately at that point, the dashboard threw a warning 'engine temp too high' .. and a red light with a thermometer-like thing appeared.

So what do you guys think? What to do?
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Another possibility is the water pump failing.

On the basis you have to start somewhere, and as the thermostat is also possible, that may be the part to check/replace first.

You can test the thermostat if you can remove it from the engine. You may even see that it is physically broken just be inspecting it, but otherwise a simple test is to place it in boiling water and see of the plunger retracts.
If at first you don't succeed, destroy all the evidence and pretend you never tried :lol:
My Name: soewhaty

Experienced Member
Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2015 5:23 am
Model: C3 2006-2009, Facelift model
Year: 2006 (06)
Engine Size: 1.4
Fuel Type: Petrol
Mileage: 89000
Trim Level: Exclusive
Gearbox: Manual 5 speed
DPF: No
LHD or RHD: LHD (Europe)

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Thanks! Can I take out the thermostat myself? Is it easy or do I need to have it done by mechanics?
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My Name: C3CAR

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soewhaty wrote:Thanks! Can I take out the thermostat myself? Is it easy or do I need to have it done by mechanics?
It is considered a moderate DIY job, so if you are happy to tackle moderately difficult jobs, you should be able to do it.

If you get yourself a copy of the the C3 Haynes Manual it can help you find out the procedure for your engine and give you a head-up on what is involved before you tackle it.
My Name: soewhaty

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Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2015 5:23 am
Model: C3 2006-2009, Facelift model
Year: 2006 (06)
Engine Size: 1.4
Fuel Type: Petrol
Mileage: 89000
Trim Level: Exclusive
Gearbox: Manual 5 speed
DPF: No
LHD or RHD: LHD (Europe)

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Arfur Dent wrote:Its a cooling system fault. Possibly a stuck closed thermostat, possibly a false sensor reading.
C3CAR wrote:But these things don't get to the bottom of your 'over heating' fault as all of the heating and cooling features are will within design limits and if you get an error; its due to a fault (with the system or the sensor).
Thanks for your opinions, guys. I want your advice again, if psbl. So, since my car mechanic also thinks similarly to Arfur Dent and C3CAR that it could be a sensor issue that I'm having, I gotta ask - how could it be a false sensor reading? In my opinion it makes more sense that it is a thermostat-related issue because as I said, on a few occasions - both on an easy run and a long (600km) run I got the problem as described - heating works well, hot air blows in cabin, out of the blue cold air starts blowing and immediately with that the dash displays 'engine too hot warning'. If it was a false reading on the part of the sensor I guess it would only display a false warning but warm air would continue blowing in. The fact that in my case the warm air stopped and cold one started blowing makes me think that it is a clogged up thermostat, cos coolant stops circulating and thus hot air stops blowing. Could a faulty sensor cause warm air from the engine to stop blowing in as well?
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My Name: C3CAR

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If you get actual cold air blowing and a warning when it should be hot, yes you have some problem with the cooling system like the level of coolant or possibly the pump etc.

If you just get a warning and no other symptoms you could have a bad sensor or a working one and there is also a fault with the cooling system.

Problems with the cooling system like a lack of coolant can cause overheating and head gasket failure.

Both warnings and symptoms should be investigated before driving again to save the Head gasket.
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My Name: C3CAR

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No hot air from the heater when the engine is hot is usually due to an air lock where the coolant can't circulate or a lack of coolant.

A stuck thermostat will also restrict heat to the heater. It's a cheap part and easy to change. If it's suspect, just change it. You can test the thermostat by putting it into hot water or heating the water it is in after its been removed from the car. But just fitting a new ones is quicker.
My Name: soewhaty

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Posts: 93
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2015 5:23 am
Model: C3 2006-2009, Facelift model
Year: 2006 (06)
Engine Size: 1.4
Fuel Type: Petrol
Mileage: 89000
Trim Level: Exclusive
Gearbox: Manual 5 speed
DPF: No
LHD or RHD: LHD (Europe)

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1. Thanks for the reply! Given the facts I listed in my prev. msg and namely the fact that it is not only a dash warning but also the symptom of warm air stopping to blow, could I then be sure that it is NOT a false/over-sensitive sensor and consider it to be an issue of a faulty thermostat?

2. It is not an issue of lack of coolant, cos I had the coolant changed half a year ago. Whether or not there's an air lock - I don't know. Gotta trust the mechanic who changed coolant or ask again for this to be inspected. The coolant tank shows that the coolant level is within the norms so that makes me rule out insufficient coolant being a cause for the problem (air lock could still be present though :( ). Well, all that leads me to think that the probable cause for the whole problem is a bad thermostat or possibly the pump, as you said, but I'm rather unaware of anything concerning the pump ... So, as you said, a test if the thermostat opens up when heated in boiling water will tell me if the thermostat is at fault. And if indeed it isn't expensive i'll just change it.
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My Name: C3CAR

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Joined: Wed May 04, 2011 10:01 am
Model: C3 2002-2005, Original shape model
Year: 2002 (02)
Engine Size: 1.4 (16v)
Fuel Type: Diesel
Mileage: 140000
Trim Level: Exclusive
Gearbox: Manual 5 speed
DPF: No
LHD or RHD: RHD (UK)
Engine name: DV4 16-valve diesel (90 PS)
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soewhaty wrote:I had the coolant changed half a year ago. Whether or not there's an air lock - I don't know.
If you keep the coolant that gets drained out for the thermostat change it can be re-used since its only a year old. Then refill following these tips for refilling the C3 cooling system and you can be sure there is no air lock there too :)
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