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Q: 94 65,000 miles. Heater takes along time to heat, and the fan kicks very quickly on 1994 Dodge Dakota

even in cold weather changed thermostat (didn't help). fan kicks on within 20 to 30 seconds after start-up... any ideas?
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Turn all heat/AC controls off to see if that fan comes on then. The actual engine cooling fan should be a mechanical clutch controlled fan! I think all 3 engine options use this system, you did not post eng. info.
Got to be the electric radiator fan that comes on when the A/C compressor needs it to. If the HVAC system were turned OFF, this fan will not come on!
But i guess someone will show corn man what i mean, i hope. Most likely heater core problem anyway, cool in IL. i guess.
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Check temp sensor, can be signaling fans to turn on early not letting engine warm up properly. Check temperature of upper and lower radiator hose with a temp gun. If there is a big difference even after fully warmed up check thermostat and water pump also for blockage in the system. check coolant condition as well.
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