Overheating problem - Ford Mustang Forums : Corral.net Mustang Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 Old 03-04-2016, 10:00 AM Thread Starter
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Overheating problem

My boyfriend and I recently purchased a 1999 3.8L V6 Mustang. We had it for about 2 weeks and then it started to overheat.
We changed the water pump and thermostat, it continued to over heat, we changed the fan, it stopped over heating for a few days so then we changed the radiator, still over heats. Boyfriend believes it is a blown head gasket, I am not saying that isn't a possibility because it definitely could be but I also believe we should try and flush it first before jumping into a gasket problem but he believes flushing is a waist of time. Our antifreeze reservoir is extremely dirty on the inside, he says it is oil, I say it isn't oil but I am not sure what it is. Oil is usually a bit difficult to wash off your hands but this stuff comes off quit easily. Also, I read that if it is a head gasket that our oil will appear milky, ours is not. Also preformed a pressure test which went fine. Any suggestions?

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post #2 of 5 Old 03-04-2016, 12:30 PM
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You could prob have this moved to "general mustang" but anyway....
Not all head gaskets make milky oil. Show a pic of the inside of overflow? Flushing is not a bad idea but if you replaced the rad and can see flow then that may not solve your problem. A couple things you can do. Get it nice and hot and shut it off. Disable spark and crank it over for 15-20 seconds a couple times. If your overflow bubbles during this cranking then combustion gas is leaking into the cooling system. Also there is a chemical test that you can do. You hold a test tube like thing over the rad fill and if the chemical detects combustion gases it turns a different color. Also add a leak down test to your list of things to try.

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post #3 of 5 Old 03-04-2016, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Some of the gunk that was in the overflow.
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post #4 of 5 Old 03-04-2016, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Mysterious Stranger View Post
Some of the gunk that was in the overflow.
That is probably two majors components. Sludge from not using inhibitors or a lousy inhibitor package and stop leak. From the picture it doesn't look like oil.
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post #5 of 5 Old 03-08-2016, 09:09 AM
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Did these cars come with electric fans? If so, you stated you have a new fan, new radiator, good coolant, thermostat, and water pump?

A blown head gasket can cause different symptoms. Yes, one would be the milky oil, but they can also simply consume coolant/water and it will exit the exhaust, And they can also allow exhaust gas/pressure in to the cooling system (sometimes both will happen).

Things to check:
- After you fill the radiator with coolant and burp all the air pockets out, does the coolant level decrease over time, or is it noticeably low at the time of overheat?
- Do you find coolant/water around the radiator cap or overflow cap during overheat?

If level is constantly lowering over time, you could be consuming the coolant. You would likely see a faint white/blue smoke from the exhaust or smell a sweet-ish smell from the exhaust.

If there is water leakage around the caps, you could be pressurizing the cooling system with exhaust gas, causing overflow.

Both of these scenarios are caused by head gasket failure.
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