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90 Dodge Spirit Thermostat


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3 replies to this topic

#1 f22a (converted)

f22a (converted)
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Posted December 14, 2003 at 09:52 pm

Hi.. The Car is a 1990 Dodge Spirit and the thermostat is needing replacement. I have just acquired the car as a daily driver, and this is the only maintenance it needs. However, I have never worked on a Chrysler before and I'm seeking assistance on what i will need and how I will go about doing it.

Thanks in advance.

#2 AllanC

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Posted December 14, 2003 at 11:42 pm

You did not indicate which engine you have in the vehicle but I will assume that it is the 2.5 L 4 cylinder. Place a clean container under the radiator and drain about 1 gallon of coolant. That will lower the coolant level below the thermostat housing. Follow the top radiator hose to its connection on the engine head. Remove the 2 bolts that hold the flange mounting of the radiator hose to the thermostat housing. You do not need to separate the hose from its hose mounting. The thermostat will be visible once the flange mounting is removed. Clean the hose mounting of all old gasket material. Likewise clean its mating surface on the thermostat housing. Remove old thermostat and install new unit into housing. On the side or top of the thermostat housing there should be a plug with either a square or hex recess. Remove this plug if possible. This will allow you to fill the cooling system and remove excess air. If you can remove this plug apply sealant to both sides of a new thermostat housing gasket and place on the housing. Attach hose flange mount to housing and torque bolts to 200 inch-lbs. If you cannot remove plug on side or top of housing, carefully fill cooling system through thermostat housing with coolant. Bring level as high as possible until coolant starts to overflow housing. Then install thermostat and gasket. Continue to fill cooling system through radiator. Start engine and allow engine to warm up and thermostat to open. You should see coolant start to flow through top radiator hose. Add additional coolant until radiator is full. Close system and install radiator cap. It is imperative that you remove as much excess air in cooling system as possible. The thermostat does not have an air bleed hole and you may experience overheating, local hot spots in engine head if air is trapped around thermostat.

#3 stevem

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Posted December 15, 2003 at 10:23 am

If you have an overheating problem it may not be the thremostat. You may have a bad head gasket which is a more common problem.

#4 Doug D

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Posted December 16, 2003 at 09:17 am

AllanC gave good instructions but I'll add a few details - prior to installing the thermostat drill a 1/16 hole in the flange of the t-stat and when installing make sure the hole is positioned towards the top. This will allow any trapped air to bleed out the radiator. If the plug on top of the housing is frozen (like mine) you can bleed air out by positioning the car on an incline (a set of ramps will do) and let it idle with the cap off. This will allow the air to bubble out and escape. Top off fluid as necessary.


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