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V6 (1994-2004) Mustangs Technical discussions on the 3.8L and 3.9L V6 torque monsters
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Old 06-07-2010, 09:21 AM   #1
wdnnd
 
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Question Overheating, P1285

here's where i stand. 01 mustang. 65k miles on it.

recently went to jiffy lube and had them do a full coolant system service because they said my coolant was pretty broken down and i honestly couldnt remember ever completely replacing the fluid during the life of the car. (http://jiffylube.com/autoservices/co...mservices.aspx)

fast forward about 4 months.. we're now in the summer season. i was driving in downtown chicago on a 95 degree day, bumper to bumper traffic jam, pretty much idling.. when the a/c turns to hot humid air and i notice the service engine soon light comes on. the temperature also went all the way to H. i was like oh crap. anyway i get the car to a parking garage and let it sit, it cools down.

i take it into jiffy lube the next day and im like WTF did you do to my car. the guy feels some hoses, says theres a lot of pressure built up, bleeds the system, and says i think you have a thermostat problem. he said he thinks the thermostat probably isnt dead yet, but its sticking and thats causing the problem. he tells me to take it to a total car care place and not the dealership because the dealership will screw me over on price. he says its a simple repair that should be $150 tops including parts and labor.

so i drive off and goto the ford dealership anyway. the tech says it could be the thermostat or it could have just been an air bubble, and if they bled me out at jiffy lube i should give it a few days to see if the problem reappears. he says if i bring it back there for service it will be $100 minimum for diagnostics and even if i have them do the work, they dont waive that diagnostics fee.

during the week "trial" period the check engine light goes off.

fast forward a week.. im idling in some 90 degree weather again.. a/c dies again and the temp skyrockets. check engine light comes back on.

it seems after an overheat, the a/c and overheating problem goes away once im driving fast again and the car's getting a nice bit of airflow.

any thoughts? i took it to an advance auto parts and they pulled a p1285 and told me to go to some random dude's shop who the autozone tech knows. not exactly comfortable with that.

should i take it to the dealership? should i take it to a "total car care" place like aamco, maaco, carx, etc? is there anything i can tell them in order to save costly diagnostics fees and just get the problem fixed quickly and cheaply?

thanks everyone for reading the novel. i figured it would be better to do it this way rather than write a sentence and get asked 30 questions.
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Old 06-07-2010, 10:35 AM   #2
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P1285 Cylinder head over temp sensed (in case you didnt know)

ive had a problem with a thermostat in a car once, it was stuck open so it wouldnt ever come to normal temp lol. if yours is stuck closed or mostly closed, it may not be able to cool itself down unless you are going at a decent speed where the air can cool it down.
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Old 06-07-2010, 10:37 AM   #3
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oh an as to where to take it, im a fan the owners working on their own cars. it wasnt too hard to do the thermostat on the car i had to do it on (wasnt a mustang) but im sure it isnt too bad of a job. it will save you more money and you wont have to worry about a service place messing up something else when they are in there so you come back in a week lol. i can ever seem to trust those places/people, even when they put my tires on
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Old 06-07-2010, 12:59 PM   #4
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I wonder if it's the e-fan failing. The A/C will cut off when the engine starts overheating, to protect itself.

A thermostat change is pretty easy, the hard part is bleeding the system, it just takes time.
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Old 06-07-2010, 01:26 PM   #5
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I would start with the thermo - they are like $5-7, they come with the gasket needed and it takes like a 1/2 hour tops to do. If you have a problem still then look at the fan. I had a similar problem with my 95 where the thermo would not open but the fan wasnt turning on at the same time - what are the chances I know...but its not worth blowing a headgasket, and or warping the heads from overheating...

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Old 06-07-2010, 04:45 PM   #6
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I'd check the radiator fan too. Sometimes they stop kicking on when they should. On the 85 TA I had I had to get a mechanic to just straight wire it so it stayed on when the key was on. That solved that.
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Old 06-07-2010, 09:43 PM   #7
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^^ I had to do something like that on my old 85 Fox because factory it would come on way to late to cool the engine.

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Old 06-07-2010, 09:43 PM
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