: Quick Questions/Help Needed for New Owner



Lil_Black_Cadi
01-23-11, 09:13 PM
:suspect:Fella's,

I just bought an '01 Catera, 1 Owner with only 69,000 miles. I'm pretty mechanically inclined but on any new task/project I like to consult other sources of knowledge. There are a couple minor (I hope) issues that I want some thoughts on (they may or may not be related/connected).

1. The low coolant light is always on, but the resevior is full. - This leades me to believe just a dirty/bad sensor (the car still has Dexcool in it which will be flushed ASAP)
2. The temperature gauge basically doesn't work. It either is pegged 0 or will randomly jump up to a random temperature and hang out there before going back to 0. - Again, another sensor issue?
3. The overheat light randomly comes on but not never in direct correlation to the temp gauge's location. - Doubtful it is overheating at 70mph in 5 degree weather but I want to be sure.

Can anyone help direct me to the root cause of these and let me know what is needed as far as 1 sensor, multiple sensors or what other parts would be needed and what is cross compatible with a Saturn part.:suspect:


THANKS IN ADVANCE!!!

elvin315
01-24-11, 04:53 AM
1. The low coolant light is always on, but the resevior is full. - This leades me to believe just a dirty/bad sensor (the car still has Dexcool in it which will be flushed ASAP)

Sensor shot. Don't think it's available without tank.

2. The temperature gauge basically doesn't work. It either is pegged 0 or will randomly jump up to a random temperature and hang out there before going back to 0. - Again, another sensor issue?

Pull instrument panel (search: dashboard, instruments). Check/clean connectors.

3. The overheat light randomly comes on but not never in direct correlation to the temp gauge's location. - Doubtful it is overheating at 70mph in 5 degree weather but I want to be sure.

Check for oil in coolant. Look for "mayo" under oil cap. It can plug the radiator. Cause: leaky oil cooler.

Lil_Black_Cadi
01-24-11, 09:29 PM
1. The low coolant light is always on, but the resevior is full. - This leades me to believe just a dirty/bad sensor (the car still has Dexcool in it which will be flushed ASAP)

Sensor shot. Don't think it's available without tank.

2. The temperature gauge basically doesn't work. It either is pegged 0 or will randomly jump up to a random temperature and hang out there before going back to 0. - Again, another sensor issue?

Pull instrument panel (search: dashboard, instruments). Check/clean connectors.

3. The overheat light randomly comes on but not never in direct correlation to the temp gauge's location. - Doubtful it is overheating at 70mph in 5 degree weather but I want to be sure.

Check for oil in coolant. Look for "mayo" under oil cap. It can plug the radiator. Cause: leaky oil cooler.

Thanks for the input. What would be the next area to check (for #2 & #3) if those aren't correct? It being my daily driver and 5* outside; I don't want to dive into the car on my off day to come up empty handed in this weather and not have it fixed come time to go to work again.

hgqguy
01-25-11, 07:56 PM
It sounds like an engine temp sensor?? maybe?? also knwo that the cateras are know to blow head gaskets.. how about an engine block smoke test??

The car is very old.. so the sensors would be my first plan of attack.. if no oil and coolant mixing.

Good luck! mine has 130K on it.