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Discussion Starter #1
My Cougar runs hot after a 20 min. drive.(Temp here is 70-80 with a cool breeze) I noticed the top radiator hose had a lot of pressure. So I thought I would remove the stat and run without a stat. Come to find out that the previous owner had taken the stat out and I have been running without a stat.. What would make it run hot on a cool day? 50/50 coolant. New oil change. Maybe the fan clutch? Is it OK to run without a stat?

I did have a gauge issue but I fixed that problem with the right regulator.

Thanks, Chris
 

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Are you confident in the sender? I saw another thread about the reading being odd after you got the gauges working. If it is indeed running hot you might try having the radiator boiled out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I do have a shroud. Last year I had a leak fixed. Not sure if they boiled it or not. It came back looking like new or new paint. I added 1/2 gallon of water and it helped a little. But still gets hot. Why does the top hose have pressure? Is that normal?
Maybe the sender is in the wrong place or does it matter?
 

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You should run a thermostat as it will allow your car to warm up properly and help your fuel mileage. The lack of a thermostat may mean the coolant isn't spending enough time in the radiator, therefore causing the hot condition. In addition check your timing.
 

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The hoses should be firm after it hits 160-180 range if its holding pressure - that's a good thing. Maybe it's not really hot - would be helpful to know what th temp is, but if you have the correct mix in there, and it holds 15 lbs of pressure, you should be good as long as the thing isn't clogged up and decent airflow through it. Another thing that can get you is somebody got the head gaskets on backwards! Very easy to do on a small block if you don't watch it - and it will overheat if you do it. SO if you had the heads off in the recent past - I'd be highly suspect of that....
 

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Discussion Starter #7
It's the original engine,, 102790 mile on her. I think smag60 might have something here. Couple of weeks ago I notice the distributer was loose. I don't have a timing light so I have been trying to set it from the seat of my pants. I did see some change in the temp when I think I'm getting it close. I'm going to get a timing light now. What is a good one? And where do I get one,,.Ebay?
Thanks you ALL for your help!!! I like chatting with people that is smarter than me.
 

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Well, don't go talking to me then!! LOL You can get a timing light all over the place - but I bet you can get one damn near free on craigslist (my preference). Try to get one that has the adjustable knob onthe back as long as you going to the trouble to get one. Sears has some nice ones for a price....Harbor Freight for the low budget onw.
 

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If you are going t okeep an old car like these, then you need two things.
A vacuum guage, and a timing light.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The timing is set. Runs good for an old car but still running a Fever. I think she has got a blown head gasket. There is moisture coming out the right tail pipe. But no water in the oil though.
 

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The timing guage and vacuum guage, are for properly setting the timing, and carburetor adjustments.... If it is a bone stock engine, you should be able to get at least 15 inches of vacuum, at idle. If the timing gear set has not been changed, you should plan on that soon. The chain does wear and stretch over time, and will cause lots of driveability issues. Set your timing with the vacuum advance "plugged". Once you get the most vacuum by adjusting your timing, then make your carb adjustments, again, to get the most vacuum at idle. You will probably have to go back and forth a bit, to find the sweet spot. I think Ford says 6 degree's initial, my 68 289 with cam likes about 14 degree's initial advance.
Water vapor is a good sign that your engine is actually healthy, on that side. If you have duals, you may just be running lean on the left bank..

Also, the laser temerature tools are getting cheaper, or maybe you can borrow one. They are nice, as they can pinpoint exactly where temps are changing. One side or the other of the thermostat, etc..
 

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The key ingrediants to maintaining temps are primarily coolant/flow/system pressure. You need to have the right mix, good solid pressure, and air flow/coolant flow. But don't put all your eggs in the idiot light basket - it could easily be the temp guage that not right...."trust but verify" as our great president once said. One of those cheap in the block temp guages can be very helpful in knowing whats really goin on
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I put a new 170Degree stat in and a new 13lb radiator cap. Excellent flow through the radiator. Still running a fever
I'm about ready to give up......In block temp gauge?...........
 

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I've got the other thread about temp guage/sensor. I'm far from an expert, but after all my diagnoses I'm 99% sure it's my temperature sender unit (mine goes into the manifold). I flushed system, installed new 195 degree thermostat, and with the infrared thermometer I bought ($40 at Lowes, not sure it's totally accurate but seems to be close) I'm now getting engine temp readings of 200-205 after a 10 minute drive and 5 minute idle on an 80 degree day, even though my "new" temperature sensor throws my needle into the hot area after about 5 minutes. My problem is finding a sensor that seems to be accurate.
 

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