Engine and trans getting hot, overhead console temp wrong - Dodge Cummins Diesel Forum
94-98 Powertrain Discussion of components that are directly involved in the power production and all that is needed to get and keep the truck moving . Engine , Transmission Ect...NO ADVERTISING

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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 10:53 PM Thread Starter
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Engine and trans getting hot, overhead console temp wrong

Hi, fellas. It's been a while. I've been very busy. Since my 3 issues last year the truck has been performing wonderfully, but two days ago I took the pup for a swim and when I was crawling along very slowly I noticed my engine temp was creeping above 190 which I've never seen. It was only 80 outside. It stayed around 200-210 I'd guess, and the weird thing was the overhead console temp reading was saying 102. Usually this truck runs very cool even in city traffic, etc.

At any rate, the temps went back to normal after a few minutes and I thought maybe there was a glitch with the thermostat or maybe the fan clutch was not doing its job. When I got back I left the truck running and took a rag and held it in front of the condenser and cooler and it immediately sucked it in, so I know the fan clutch is pulling a lot of air. Yesterday when I drove it the temp stayed perfect. I picked up a new radiator cap after inspecting the original and put it on because the original was showing some checking in the rubber.

Today I hooked up my dump trailer and took a load to the dump, nothing heavy by any means, total of maybe 4500 lbs behind the truck, and it was running cool the whole time, even idling in a traffic jam, then I went up a small hill to the dump and was waiting in line and the temp started creeping up again, but this time it didn't slow and was approaching over 2/3 the way up the gauge, which I've never seen before. I was watching my tranny temp and it slowly was rising, too, getting up towards 220. Neither have ever done this at idle before. I looked up at the overhead console temp and it was showing 105 and it was only 75 outside.

I was getting really nervous and considering shutting it all down but I had a huge line behind me. I crept along and then slowly everything started normalizing again, the engine and tranny cooled back down and I left the truck idling with the AC running while I dumped my load and it all went back to normal, and also the overhead temperature as well.

At this point I am thinking of changing the thermostat, but the overhead temp thing is really strange. Both times the truck was heating up, that temp was wrong, too. Does that control anything that could lead to the truck overheating? I wouldn't think so.


'97 3500 4x4 CC DRW, 4.10, Banks PP, BD tc, vb, eb, 60# springs, Torqloc, gauges, Weatherguard, B&W...
'92 CC W350 DRW sold
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 11:01 PM
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Temperture sensor for the overhead display sometimes come unclipped and end up near the radiator. I moved mine near the headlight, sometimes when I was snow plowing parking lots (maybe 30* outside) it would read over 100* Makes sense a hot radiator would skew readings.

Make sure the coolant and the radiator (inside and out) is clean.

Daily driver/ workhorse: 1994 2500SLT 4x4 Auto. Hewitt EGT, Boost, Trans gauges, Under hood Mech FP gauge, Trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, Mag-Hytec DD Transmission Pan, Ford manual hub conversion, Diamond eye 4" turbo back, 37337 Upgrade. 260K

98 2500slt 4x4 ECLB moldy G56, south bend clutch 3rd gen trac bar , boxed control arms, billet tappet cover w/ dual breathers trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, 4' stainless side dump with muffler 240k
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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 11:07 PM Thread Starter
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I think you're right, Alan, I think the hot radiator is causing the faulty reading on the sensor. My coolant is not too old, probably 40k miles and looks perfect and green. I checked the outside of the radiator and there are no bugs and no oil or anything. My engine is super clean without any oil leaks or anything. I suppose the inside of the radiator could use some attention but the fact that this seems intermittent tells me that's not it, and that it's maybe the thermostat acting up, because if it was the radiator then it would have never rectified itself.

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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 11:25 PM
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It could be anything really, if you get bored you could play with an ir temp gun.
You mention the fan was locked up, so that kinda tells me the radiator is getting hot which means the thermostat is working

Daily driver/ workhorse: 1994 2500SLT 4x4 Auto. Hewitt EGT, Boost, Trans gauges, Under hood Mech FP gauge, Trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, Mag-Hytec DD Transmission Pan, Ford manual hub conversion, Diamond eye 4" turbo back, 37337 Upgrade. 260K

98 2500slt 4x4 ECLB moldy G56, south bend clutch 3rd gen trac bar , boxed control arms, billet tappet cover w/ dual breathers trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, 4' stainless side dump with muffler 240k
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
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The truth is, even though I've maintained her she's getting old and stuff is wearing out. The radiator is original, so are the water pump and fan clutch. I know the thermostat was changed by a shop before I bought the truck. I think I should probably change the t-stat with a Cummins replacement just because. If the problem persists, then I should probably pull the water pump and check the impellers and just replace it with a new one. Have been meaning to do that along with a new tensioner. After that, I should pull the radiator and take it to a shop to have it cleaned and rodded. If after all that it still persisted, then I'd put a new fan clutch on. Beyond that, I'm stumped.

'97 3500 4x4 CC DRW, 4.10, Banks PP, BD tc, vb, eb, 60# springs, Torqloc, gauges, Weatherguard, B&W...
'92 CC W350 DRW sold
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 08:05 AM
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I can hear my fan clutch when it is engaged, it sounds like the Horton clutches in class 8 trucks. If the AC is on it gets heat soaked enough at a stop light to engage and I hear it when the light turns green while I accelerate, trailer or no trailer. Putting a rag in front of the condenser only verifies the fan is turning, not that the clutch fully engages. It would be the first thing I replace, not the last. Also, the box store clutches are a rip-off. I recommend paying the extra $$$ for a new OEM.
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I can hear my fan clutch when it is engaged, it sounds like the Horton clutches in class 8 trucks. If the AC is on it gets heat soaked enough at a stop light to engage and I hear it when the light turns green while I accelerate, trailer or no trailer. Putting a rag in front of the condenser only verifies the fan is turning, not that the clutch fully engages. It would be the first thing I replace, not the last. Also, the box store clutches are a rip-off. I recommend paying the extra $$$ for a new OEM.
Its that loud? The fans in class 8 trucks are almost deafening at full lock up.

I wish there was a video demonstrating the noise, because i have no idea if any of my trucks fan clutches work.

Daily driver/ workhorse: 1994 2500SLT 4x4 Auto. Hewitt EGT, Boost, Trans gauges, Under hood Mech FP gauge, Trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, Mag-Hytec DD Transmission Pan, Ford manual hub conversion, Diamond eye 4" turbo back, 37337 Upgrade. 260K

98 2500slt 4x4 ECLB moldy G56, south bend clutch 3rd gen trac bar , boxed control arms, billet tappet cover w/ dual breathers trident fuel lines, Tork Tek OFV, 4' stainless side dump with muffler 240k
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 01:36 PM
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Inside the cab it sounds like a jet is taking off nearby. Yes, it is that loud.

97 3500, 2 WD, G56, slightly bombed, 1.3 million miles. Started the second million on 8/24/13
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 02:41 PM
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Inside the cab it sounds like a jet is taking off nearby. Yes, it is that loud.
^^^^^ what he said, if your truck is hot and water is flowing (thermostat is open) and the fan doesnít roar when you rev the motor it may be time for a new one. Hereís what I do, get the truck good and hot then while running rub a rolled up newspaper against the fan blades. If you can slow the fan down the clutch is probably bad.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 04:11 PM
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Hereís what I do, get the truck good and hot then while running rub a rolled up newspaper against the fan blades. If you can slow the fan down the clutch is probably bad.
I think that is a bad idea. Our fans are known to crack from the rivet holes. I inspect mine regularly and I have a spare. In the helicopter world if a rotor blade strikes a small branch (and I mean something like 1/2 inch dia) there is a "sudden stoppage" inspection required of the entire drive train, a very time intensive job. Rotor blades are only spinning at about 290 rpm. Imagine the stress on the fan blades spinning much faster than that.

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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 08:56 PM
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I think that is a bad idea. Our fans are known to crack from the rivet holes. I inspect mine regularly and I have a spare. In the helicopter world if a rotor blade strikes a small branch (and I mean something like 1/2 inch dia) there is a "sudden stoppage" inspection required of the entire drive train, a very time intensive job. Rotor blades are only spinning at about 290 rpm. Imagine the stress on the fan blades spinning much faster than that.
Iím not saying stick it in there and shred it, just lightly graze the blades and listen for the speed to change..... heck on rigs with plastic fans I just use my hand but I would never recommend that to anyone!!!!!! But yea your right our fans are fragile but it seems some people have a hard time listening for it to be engaged or not. If your fan is unlocked it is extremely easy to slow it down.
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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old 06-14-2019, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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To add to the mystery, I have a very small coolant leak somewhere, but I can find nothing. I'm starting to suspect the water pump. Insofar as the fan clutch - it IS pulling a lot of air, but I have no idea how many cfms. I can hear it in the cab when it is locked up, but it is definitely not like a class 8 truck. When those diesel garbage trucks come by, the fan noise is ridiculous.

I don't have any bubbles in the reservoir after I shut the truck down, and no oil in the coolant (or coolant in the oil), so I'm not worried about a head gasket. The truck ran perfectly cool today, but I didn't do any slow speed stuff. That's where it's heating up - slow speeds and up hills at lower speeds. Could be a combo of radiator and fan clutch. Who knows?

Right now I have neither the time nor place to pull the radiator or do any major work. In fact, if the truck went down right now I'd have to go buy another one because I really can't afford down time. I'm thinking of getting another truck so I can take this one out of commission for a little while. I am very attached to this truck and I won't sell it.

'97 3500 4x4 CC DRW, 4.10, Banks PP, BD tc, vb, eb, 60# springs, Torqloc, gauges, Weatherguard, B&W...
'92 CC W350 DRW sold
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