Temp Fluctuates in stop and go traffic unless A/C is on - Maxima Forums



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Temp Fluctuates in stop and go traffic unless A/C is on

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Old 02-26-2017, 10:10 AM   #1
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Temp Fluctuates in stop and go traffic unless A/C is on

HI Everyone,

First of I really appreciate this forum and it is such a big help.

I have an 87 maxima wagon, automatic with 71k miles.

I recently purchased it and have noticed when I am in stop and go traffic the temp gauge goes a bit past the middle ( between hot and middle). As soon as I start moving again for a period of time it goes back to normal (just a touch under the middle of the gauge) . Additionally I recently found out on a warm day if I run the A/C, the temp gauge stays normal ( just under the middle mark) regardless if I am in stop and go traffic. This is my first Nissan maybe this is normal but I am assuming not. Any ideas? Maybe the coolng fan doesn't work unless A/C is on?



Oh yeah I dont know if this ties in but as soon as I turn off the A/C the I get a sulfur smell out of the vents.

Thanks so much for any advice

Jake
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Old 02-26-2017, 11:40 AM   #2
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when you turn on the A/C it turns on the cooling fan which is why it will stay the same..... do your cooling fans come on without the A/C when it gets warm? make sure your coolant is full and your fans come on when it's warm and not moving. As far as the smell clean out your heater box and fan and see if that helps.
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Old 02-26-2017, 12:44 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply.
The coolant is full. I do ocassionally hear the fan turn on ( I think... something turns on for like 10 seconds) but it doesn't lower the temp. Once I start driving again the temp lowers. I will try leting the car idle and open the hood and seeif it is turning on.
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Old 02-26-2017, 03:37 PM   #4
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be sure to check the coolant in the radiator and not just in the overflow cuz if you have a crack in the hose or if the seal on the cap is bad the overflow will stay full but coolant in the engine will be low.... the fan will cool the coolant in the radiator but not the engine if it's a little low and the pump isn't going fast enough to pump enough water when it's a little low. does the heater work when it is heating up?
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Old 02-26-2017, 04:32 PM   #5
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Thanks again Vern,

I will check the fluid level in the radiator when it cools down ( was just out driving it).

The heater seems normal. It doesnt get warm until the car warms up.
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Old 03-03-2017, 07:38 PM   #6
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1. pressure test the cooling system, it may be that the radiator cap is leaking or other leaks
2. when did you last replace the thermostat. If its sort of sticky, but not quite .., turning on the AC increases engine revs, which leads to the thermostat staying open more so than closed.
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Old 03-25-2017, 06:58 AM   #7
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Thanks for the ideas.
Is there a way to pressure test the cap for someone who doesn't have the tools? Would soapy water around the cap work?
I don't know if/when the thermostat was changed. Maybe that will be my next step. If the thermostat was only half working could I tell by touching the upper hose?
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