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Discussion Starter #1
I probably need a new thermostat, is it as much as a bitch as it looks like? Looks like have the driver side of the car has to be removed to get to it. If so any tricks? Or should I just pay Chrysler?

I have a 2.4 btw

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I probably need a new thermostat, is it as much as a bitch as it looks like? Looks like have the driver side of the car has to be removed to get to it. If so any tricks? Or should I just pay Chrysler?

I have a 2.4 btw

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Dunno but here's the proceedure: *Posted https://www.dodge-dart.org/forum/dodge-dart-tweakers-anonymous/25339-dart-2-4-thermostat-2.html#post638754 by @alpinegreenneon

Here it is with pics. Be aware that refilling the cooling system is best accomplished with a UView Airlift or similar tool to prevent air pockets that can lead to overheating and engine damage.

07 - Cooling / Engine / THERMOSTAT / Removal

2.4L

Special Tools: Click to display a list of tools used in this procedure

CAUTION:
Do not loosen radiator draincock with system hot and pressurized. Serious burns from coolant can occur.

CAUTION:
The Thermostat and housing is serviced as an assembly. Do not remove the thermostat from the housing, damage to the thermostat may occur.

1.Disconnect and isolate the negative battery cable. If equipped with an Intelligent Battery Sensor (IBS), disconnect the IBS connector first before disconnecting the negative battery cable.

2.Remove the engine cover.

3.Remove the battery (Refer to 08 - Electrical/Battery System/BATTERY/Removal) .

4.Remove the battery tray assembly (Refer to 08 - Electrical/Battery System/TRAY, Battery/Removal) .

5.Remove the belly pan (Refer to 13 - Frame and Bumpers/Under Body Protection/BELLY PAN/Removal) .

6.Drain the cooling system.

7.Lower vehicle.

8.Remove the brake vacuum pump (Refer to 09 - Engine/Cylinder Head/PUMP, Vacuum/Removal) .

9.Remove the three bolts that attach the PDC to the body.

10.Position the PDC to the side to allow for thermostat housing removal.

11.Remove the intake manifold upper support bracket (1) bolts (3).

View attachment 94002

12.Loosen but do not remove the bracket nuts (2).

NOTE: The bracket can not be removed at this time, loosening the nuts allow the necessary movement for the thermostat housing to be removed.

13.Remove the coolant recovery bottle return hose (1).


14.Disconnect the engine coolant temperature sensor harness connector (2).

View attachment 94010

15.Disconnect the forward most shift cable from the transmission lever.

16.Disconnect the quick-coupling and remove the heater core supply hose (4) . Pliers, Hose Clamp 10288

17.Using Special Tool 10288, release the clamps at the heater core return (5) and thermostat outlet (7).

18.Remove the heater core return hose (5).

19.Remove the thermostat outlet hose (7).

20.Remove the thermostat housing bolts (3).

21.Remove the thermostat housing (6) from the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The dealer wants to charge me 850$ for it...

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You can buy the parts, the oem coolant, and the UView Airlift tool, a harbor freight compressor, and do it your self and still save half that money.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You can buy the parts, the oem coolant, and the UView Airlift tool, a harbor freight compressor, and do it your self and still save half that money.
Do you need the Uview? I'm still curious if it's the thermostat at this point... I hooked my scan gauge up and with 2-3 miles or 10 min of driving I was at 180-190. (Started at 135 from lunch). While on the freeway I was constantly between 195-220. If my history proves correct, if the therm was bad and stuck open, doesn't get above 160-170.

What is odd, I'm in a parking lot idling and I'm at 184-188, not sure what temperature this term is at. I'm wondering if the sensor is starting to go, bad therm, or TSB

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I am not sure what the thermostat rating is, FSM doesn't say. Most modern cars for the last 20 years, it's at least 195 degrees. I have checked coolant temp on my Darts and it's usually around 195 to 205 degrees. Yours looks to be on the cool side meaning it opens too soon, so it very well could be the thermostat.
As far as refilling, the UView is foolproof. I have used it on my Neons and there was no need for constant checking coolant level for days. Air bubbles in the head can be serious, why risk it. There is a way of refilling without it in one of the links I posted from the 2013 FSM. The later FSMs all just mention the UView only. Most newer cars are using pressurized reservoirs like the Dart so if you don't get it for the Dart, you will likely need it for your next vehicles. You could reuse the original coolant if you filter it through an old tee shirt. You may still need some new coolant to top off. An air compressor is a very nice thing to have no matter how little you use it. I have had one for at least the last 45 years and find that I use it a lot. I check air pressure on my tires at least once a month and add air especially as it gets cold.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I am not sure what the thermostat rating is, FSM doesn't say. Most modern cars for the last 20 years, it's at least 195 degrees. I have checked coolant temp on my Darts and it's usually around 195 to 205 degrees. Yours looks to be on the cool side meaning it opens too soon, so it very well could be the thermostat.
As far as refilling, the UView is foolproof. I have used it on my Neons and there was no need for constant checking coolant level for days. Air bubbles in the head can be serious, why risk it. There is a way of refilling without it in one of the links I posted from the 2013 FSM. The later FSMs all just mention the UView only. Most newer cars are using pressurized reservoirs like the Dart so if you don't get it for the Dart, you will likely need it for your next vehicles. You could reuse the original coolant if you filter it through an old tee shirt. You may still need some new coolant to top off. An air compressor is a very nice thing to have no matter how little you use it. I have had one for at least the last 45 years and find that I use it a lot. I check air pressure on my tires at least once a month and add air especially as it gets cold.
I do know how reliable my scan gauge 2, but when ok the free way and around town, the dash gauge shows dead center on the gauge

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Even with no thermostat, eventually an engine would get to a reasonable operating temp. If a thermostat is opening too soon, like at 180 degrees, it will take it longer to get to operating temp. The PCM actually is what regulates the operating temp more than a thermostat by turning the fans on and off.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Even with no thermostat, eventually an engine would get to a reasonable operating temp. If a thermostat is opening too soon, like at 180 degrees, it will take it longer to get to operating temp. The PCM actually is what regulates the operating temp more than a thermostat by turning the fans on and off.
Interesting because I had a Ford with an open therm and after 100 miles on the hwy still read 165. How fast should my car be at the center peg on the gauge from dead cold? I'm starting to think it's a sensor or the TSB?

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The FSM does not specify how long it should take to get to operating temps. Obviously, if the outside temps are really cold, it should take longer. These variables are built into the PCM programming.

Set Conditions:

•The predicted coolant temperature reaches the target threshold before the actual coolant temperature and the PCM detects that the actual engine coolant temperature is too far below the what is acceptable for a good thermostat.

You can check if the TSB applies to your PCM model year. A dealer won't flash a PCM if a TSB doesn't apply. Replacing the coolant sensor is almost the same procedure as replacing the thermostat. The sensor is right there on the thermostat housing.
The sensor is #2 in this pic:

dart24thermostat2.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #12
If I replace the thermostat, should I do sensor while I am at it. Is replacing the termo as hard as it looks or easy once you get in there?

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Discussion Starter #14
The FSM does not specify how long it should take to get to operating temps. Obviously, if the outside temps are really cold, it should take longer. These variables are built into the PCM programming.

Set Conditions:

•The predicted coolant temperature reaches the target threshold before the actual coolant temperature and the PCM detects that the actual engine coolant temperature is too far below the what is acceptable for a good thermostat.

You can check if the TSB applies to your PCM model year. A dealer won't flash a PCM if a TSB doesn't apply. Replacing the coolant sensor is almost the same procedure as replacing the thermostat. The sensor is right there on the thermostat housing.
The sensor is #2 in this pic:

View attachment 116222
Lastly, last Thursday (2 driving days before cel) I went to the dealer to get coolant, and the tech bleed pressure and then added coolant for me cause I was a little below add. Could this have anything to do with it? Or coincidence?

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Coincidence. If the reservoir was empty, that could cause problems.
 

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Since you are not certain, you might as well replace both since you will be right there with everything apart to get access.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Since you are not certain, you might as well replace both since you will be right there with everything apart to get access.
Comes with a sensor, that solves that.

Does the vacuum pump have to come out, and if so what gasket/sealer do I use?


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No, it does not.

It would be significantly easier to do since you can see it if you remove the pump but it doesn't if you don't want to.

I'm also used to sticking my hands in blind walls feeling for low voltage wiring so there ya go...while also grazing high voltage which hasn't always been pain free.
 
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