So how does a thermostat work? Show Less. As you might have guessed, an engine that’s running on hot coolant won’t be able to cool down, meaning it’s at risk of overheating. Still not sure? The thermostat in most cars is about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter. The car thermostat is meant to keep your car warm and cool. A car engine produces a lot of heat as it runs, water (coolant) is circulated around the engine to help keep it cool. The compressor connects to the crankshaft via a drive belt. Depending on how savvy you are under the hood of a car, you may be able to replace it yourself for between $50-$150. A thermostat is a valve in the cooling system that closes when coolant temperatures are low, in order to recycle coolant through the motor and bring it up to the ideal temperature. A safe and smooth driving experience depends upon a well-functioning vehicle. At low temperatures, the outlet to the radiator is completely blocked -- all of the coolant is recirculated back through the engine. It is he who performs the work of reading and processing information about the … Any liquid-cooled car engine has a small device called the thermostat that sits between the engine and the radiator . Either scenario suggests you need a new thermostat. Once … Another sign that your thermostat is malfunctioning is if you see orange or green puddles of liquid under your car. Then, find and remove the radiator cap, and look inside to see if there’s any coolant flowing. This will also pave the way for providing you with the answer to the question, how does a car AC work? How does a thermostat work? This device acts as your temp sensor. You may hear the phrase “the thermostat was stuck open or closed.” When the engine has been sitting for a while and is not warm, the thermostat will be closed. It is a very simple yet very effective mechanism. Another temperature-related symptom is fluctuations in the gauge. How To Fix And Start Your Car. Satisfied Customers: 919. Most automobile mechanics will tell you it is not a good idea to … The thermostat does two things - it closes or it opens - and that’s what determines how the coolant behaves. The fact is that for its functionality the machine must be equipped with an on-board computer. The thermostat in most cars is about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter. Category: Car. The thermostat is a mainly a traditional stat set to a high temperature and when the car demands more power the ECU switches on the electric feed to the … When this happens, you’ll notice a drop in engine performance as it struggles to keep up. A thermostat is a small device that is positioned in between the car engine and radiator. Show More. The thermostat is basically a valve between the engine and the radiator. When coolant temperature rises to the engine's ideal, the thermostat valve opens to send coolant through the radiator in order to maintain that temperature. Its job is to block the flow of coolant to the radiator until the engine has warmed up. Let’s now look at a few of the most common signs that suggest your thermostat needs attention. Ratings of Temperature Once the engine coolant is blistering adequately; the thermostat unsealed to permit the coolant to move to the radiator. Be the responsible car owner and take care of it throughout its lifetime. Including what it is, how it works, and how to tell if it’s not operating correctly. Auto Mechanic: Michael, Auto Service Technician replied 13 years ago. Thankfully, checking a thermostat is pretty straight-forward. How does the thermostat in a car's cooling system work? If the engine coolant is cold, then the thermostat maintains its closed position. One of the main components in charge of regulating how hot or cold it gets is the thermostat. Once it leaves the engine, it goes to the radiator, where that excess heat is removed. Optional Information: 2004 Nissan mixima 3.5. High Oil Pressure – Main Causes and Treatment, Does Your Car Make A Rattling Noise When Accelerating? When the thermostat is closed the coolant is kept in the engine. Engine overheats within moments of starting the car. "Usually located within a metal or plastic housing where the upper radiator hose connects to the engine, most of today’s thermostats utilize the "reverse poppet" design, which opens against the flow of the coolant. Car engines need an optimal temperature range, which is 194°F or 90°C, to function effectively. This is the absolute best way to ensure it stays running strong. This cycle repeats itself as you drive, keeping your engine at its optimal temperature for driving. In case the engine coolant is cold, the thermostats will upkeep its locked state. your fuel injection system will thank you. Once the temperature drops, the spring returns the main valve to its closed position. Otherwise, a shop will handle it for you for between $200-$300. One of these vital elements is a thermostat, which enables the car engine to work at an optimum temperature by regulating the flow of coolant. By letting the engine warm up as quickly as possible, the … Faulty Thermostat. How Do Car Thermostats Work The magic of your car thermostat is the tiny cylinder (with a rod connected to the coolant valve) placed at the engine-side. However, not on all modern cars it is realized. As coolant flows through the engine, it picks up excess heat. How does the thermostat in a car's cooling system work? When you start you car for the first time in the morning, the engine is obviously cold and so is the coolant. Easy guide on how an automotive cooling system thermostat works, this information pertains to most vehicles. Once the engine coolant is hot enough, then the thermostat opens to allow the coolant to go to the radiator. There are numerous components housed in a car's engine that are crucial for its proper operation. If it’s not working as it should and you ignore the symptoms that suggest so, you’ll eventually end up with a massive repair bill (which does matter). When this goes untreated for too long, it can cause real harm to your engine. By this point, the engine shouldn’t be hot enough for coolant to be necessary, so it shouldn’t be flowing. One of the main components in charge of regulating how hot or cold it gets is the thermostat. When the coolant in the engine gets too hot, this valve opens, letting it pass to the radiator where it will cool down. Submitted: 13 years ago. Michael, Auto Service Technician. After 13+ years hustling in the exciting world of car sales, he took off to travel the world with his dog Teemo. There’s no way you could continue for long. The thermostat plays a balancing role in keeping the engine at the optimum temperature. Share this conversation. How does the thermostat work? It is a fire hazard that can lead to irremediable damage to the car engine. When it is cold, you turn your heater on and when it is hot, you turn the air conditioner on to cool you down. The transmitter unit is fitted to the cylinder head of the car's engine and is usually mounted near to the thermostat housing. And since the T-stat price is only about $8, it makes more sense to replace it than to spend hours diagnosing the problem. A thermostat is a small device that is positioned in between the car engine and radiator. Too much heat for too long, and you can end up with a cracked engine block or blown head gasket (basically the two worst-case scenarios). A car engine works much the same way, averaging between 195-220°F. While your home’s thermostat is used to monitor the interior of your home, your car’s thermostat is used to regulate the temperature of the engine to help the engine stay cool. If it is cold, the thermostat stays closed, keeping it in the engine. It features a unique type of wax that acts as an expanding agent. This can hinder the engine from reaching its optimal operating temp, reducing things like engine power and fuel economy. No worries, because in this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the automotive thermostat. Its job is to block the flow of coolant to the radiator until the engine has warmed up. Most things get bigger when they heat up and smaller when they cool down (water is a notable exception: it expands when it heats up and when it freezes too).Mechanical thermostats use this idea (which is called thermal expansion) to switch an electric circuit on and and off.The two most common types use bimetallic strips and gas-filled … To do this you will have to fit a new transmitter unit so that the gauge can be tested against a transmitter unit that is known to work properly. A car thermostat is installed on a car engine and regulates the engine temperature by opening to allow coolant from the radiator to flow through the engine, cooling it down, then closing again to allow the engine to warm up to operating temperature. Category: Car. What a Vehicle Thermostat Does. Make sure that you obtain the correct replacement by checking the serial number on the unit. As the engine is started, it takes a few minutes to warm up, and during that time, the coolant is cold. replace thermostatwhat temp thermostatis my thermostat badbad thermostat Imagine going out for a long hike on a hot summer day only to find out you didn’t bring any water.