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Why is my sport trac overheating?
2003 Ford Explorer Sport Trac

Why is my sport trac overheating?

(2003 Ford Explorer Sport Trac)
When we get the truck out on the highway all is fine. When we are caught in traffic the truck overheats rather quick. I replaced the water pump, hoses, antifreeze, thermostat, thermostat sensors, and the thermostat housing. After doing all this there are no more leaks and the overflow tank remains full so now I'm wondering if it's the fan clutch of something worse.
3 answers & 9 comments
Popular Answer
on July 06, 2014
Almost definitely a fan issue or blockage of airflow if there's a lot of crud on the front of the radiator or condenser.
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on July 06, 2014
Almost definitely a fan issue or blockage of airflow if there's a lot of crud on the front of the radiator or condenser.
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on July 05, 2014
Possible faulty fan clutch as you stated.Monitor operation to determine if engaging properly when temp rises. Fluid leakage around center may also be a clue.
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on July 10, 2014
Ok, Changed the fan clutch and it still overheats! :(
on July 14, 2014
Check thermostat.
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on July 14, 2014
Was it already doing this before replacing all those parts?
on July 14, 2014
I have owened the truck eight years and it just staeted acting up. It started overheating and the reservoir tank was empty. I looked for a leak and found that the pump was leaking. Replaced the pump, hoses, radiator cap, thermostat,drained and replaced the coolant. (Note: thermostat was broke in two pieces) the next day it started overheating again and leaking again. Pressure tested it and found it leaking around the thermostat housing. Replaced housing and sensors. Still over heating so I replaced clutch fan, and washed out radiator. I marked the overflow tank and it seems to be holding steady.
on July 14, 2014
How high does the temp go in traffic?
on July 15, 2014
My temp gauge pegs at 260, check engine light will come on. This all happens faster with the air conditioner on. Factors all change depending on how slow im going and how hot it is outside.
on July 15, 2014
I know you did the clutch, but it sounds like an airflow problem. When it gets hot can you hear the fan if you rev the engine? It should be pretty noticeable. There's a chance you got a bad one.
on July 15, 2014
The clutch is definitely working, kind of embarrassing loud as a friend of mine said.
on July 15, 2014
I wish you were nearby, I'd check this thing for free just to know what the heck is going on. I assume it has the factory fan shroud in good condition and properly installed, if not replace it. Make sure there's no major debris or damage to the AC evaporator blocking airflow. Only other thing I can think of is a clogged radiator, tho that would usually make itself more apparent at high speed, it is a possibility. One way to check yourself is to remove the fan and shroud, put a fan in front of the grill (most powerful you have) start the engine and feel the radiator for areas not getting as hot as the rest. While you have it apart, blast it from the backside with a water hose to clean out any crud. The water stream should come out the front with good flow, otherwise it's clogged up. Something that just hit me, make sure the fan is spinning the right way, pulling air through the rad. and not blowing forward. On some engines the belt can be installed on the wrong side of the pulley making it and the water pump spin backwards.
on July 19, 2014
Thanks for your help. I took a hose and rinsed the radiator out again this time from the inside out, and so far is working great.

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