Toyota Nation Forum banner

1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey guys so my Camry overheated the other night. I'm no expert so bear with me. I got it cooled down and took it home after it overheated. Luckily no check engine lights are on after this so I'm guessing that means no warped heads or warped gasket and that nothing is damaged.

So far I replaced the thermostat, coolant temp sensor and the radiator cap needed to be replaced. I left my car running after replacing those things and it didn't over heat but coolant started coming out of the sides of the radiator and steam comes out. My guess is the radiator is damaged or it needs to be bled. I can provide a video of what it's doing if needed.

So does anyone have any advice of why steam and coolant is coming out from the top of the radiator? Should I have kept bleeding air out of it for longer? How can I know if I did damage to the engine, head gasket, or cylinder heads? Thanks in advance

The car is a 1998 Camry LE 4 cylinder 2.2L
 

·
Registered
1995 T100 2WD
Joined
·
3,785 Posts
The plastic tank radiators fail where the tank is crimped onto the core especially if it the original.
There cheap and easy to replace, odds are it was leaking until the car overheated and that was the tipping point for the radiator to fail completely. Check Rockauto. They carry the Spectra line which are good units.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
The plastic drain cock screw can rot out on older radiators. I'd check that before spending any more money or time on the problem.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
305 Posts
Put the parts cannon on pause, and do some diagnostic work. Go to your local auto parts store and check out their cooling system pressure tester through their loan-a-tool program. This will help identify any leaks in your cooling system. Purchase an inexpensive non-contact infrared thermometer, something like this https://www.amazon.com/Etekcity-Lasergrip-774-Non-contact-Thermometer/dp/B00837ZGRY/ref=sr_1_30?crid=2VWNJUBDDX8L7&dchild=1&keywords=infrared+thermometer&qid=1589807013&sprefix=infra,aps,160&sr=8-30 You can check and verify temps at various points of your engine and cooling system with this.

A decent OBD II code reader will be able to give you real time coolant temp readings to verify your temp gauge in your instrument cluster is working correctly, your t-stat is working, your radiator cooling fans are coming on at the right temps etc. Something like this https://www.amazon.com/FOXWELL-Automotive-Diagnostic-Diagnostics-Scanners/dp/B01N6RKE29/ref=sr_1_2_sspa?crid=3JPN8SJFWVS1N&dchild=1&keywords=obdii+scanner&qid=1589807526&sprefix=OBD+II,aps,157&sr=8-2-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUExOENQWDVPNjRNOFFNJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNjYyNjg4M0M5VU45S1VIRUsyUiZlbmNyeXB0ZWRBZElkPUEwNjY3NDE2SzhZVjhERURTSURSJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==

You are not likely to have DTC indicated for a blown head gasket, warped head or warped head gasket (?). The only way to know these things is to perform additional diagnostics. These cars are finicky when it comes to several parts and operate best with OE parts, two of which are thermostats and radiator caps. If you didn't purchase OE parts here I would storngly encourage you to do so and fight the temptation of cheaper generic parts.

Its very common for the radiators in these cars, at this age to have their radiators fail. I've had to replace them in my '94 and '98 5SFE's.
 

·
Registered
Toyotas.
Joined
·
500 Posts
Yup, replaced ALL of my TMMK car's radiators. Strangely, my one TMC has not had a radiator failure...not even after 321,000 miles...
Steam from around the radiator tank means it's done. Stick a fork in it, it's dead like plaid with stripes.
Luckily, these radiators are as easy as it gets to change. IIRC, four bolts, two electrical connectors and five hoses. All easy to reach.
And they're cheap. You're hard-pressed to pay over $100.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Hey guys that is for all the answers. Turns out the radiator was indeed bad. I ended up replacing it, the coolant temp sensor and thermostat and now it's not overheating anymore. But I just have one more problem. I bought a spectra radiator part number CU1909 (Amazon sells them). The problem I'm having now is there is steam coming out of the radiator cap. The cap and radiator are both brand new and I can't figure out what's causing this problem. I've tried different radiator caps but nothing's working. All I can find on the internet is "blown head gasket" but I don't have any of the typical symptoms of a blown head gasket Any suggestions?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,514 Posts
What brand is the new cap? Anything but OEM is junk, in my opinion. Some auto parts stores can pressure test the cap. Or they’ll have loaner leak testers that can pressurize the system to a known pressure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
What brand is the new cap? Anything but OEM is junk, in my opinion. Some auto parts stores can pressure test the cap. Or they’ll have loaner leak testers that can pressurize the system to a known pressure.
Standard cheap radiator cap from AutoZone. Might not be OEM. I'll get one and see what happens.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,514 Posts
Standard cheap radiator cap from AutoZone.
Oh, boy! I’ve admittedly got a thing against Autozone parts, but in the case of rad caps, I’d use nothing but OEM. Might be $20 instead of $5, and definitely worth it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #11

·
Registered
1995 T100 2WD
Joined
·
3,785 Posts
Buy from a Toyota dealer. To many counterfeit parts from Amazon and Ebay.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Buy from a Toyota dealer. To many counterfeit parts from Amazon and Ebay.
Thanks I'll keep you guys updated. Gonna order this part and will post back in a couple of days when it arrives in the mail.
 

·
short-throw dipstick
Joined
·
6,104 Posts
OE best, but my go-to aftermarket cap (no issues so far) is Sankei. Japanese aftermarket brand, available at your local NAPA. +1 Stay away from lesser parts stores like AutoZone and O'reilly's.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Just a little information on what happened. When it overheated the first time it was redlined for at least 30 minutes. I didn't know I was supposed to turn my car off to let it cool down. All I knew was of an "old-school method" where you don't turn the car off cus it can warp the head gasket. (Looking back it sounds ridiculous) but surprisingly I don't have a blown head gasket. Guess luck was on my side that day. Getting my radiator cap by Wednesday so I'll give an update then to tell if it fixed the white steam problem I'm having.
 

·
RHD is cool
toyota camry ’97 RHD
Joined
·
78 Posts
oem cap and thermostat only. I have had some thermostat fail out of box of aftermarket.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Here's my update. Got the new cap but steam still comes out of the radiator cap. Noticed the engine wasn't very hot and the lower radiator hose was kind of cool to the touch. I think at this point it could bd a problem with the thermostat. Wondering if a bad thermostat could cause smoke to come out of the radiator cap. Also, I waited overnight to start my car so the engine was definitely cooled down. I took off the radiator cap to replace it with the new one and some coolant spilled out but it's also about 100° in my garage so maybe that's why it coolant came out. Gonna replace the thermostat. Any advice at this point? I'm lost
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,514 Posts
Sorry, but I’m a bit confused. First you say you got the new cap but steam still comes out. Then you say you took off the cap to replace it with the new one and coolant burped out. Can you clear up the sequence of events for me? When was the new cap on/off.

Look closely in the rad neck where the cap is supposed to seal. There are two sealing surfaces. The top of the neck, and a smaller annular surface below that. Are they smooth, and free of any flaws that would prevent the cap from sealing? I see some bad reviews on Amazon for this rad. I would’ve recommended a Denso from Rockauto, but too late for that.

I don’t see how a t’stat could cause this. But lemme guess where the stat is from... Autozone?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Sorry, but I’m a bit confused. First you say you got the new cap but steam still comes out. Then you say you took off the cap to replace it with the new one and coolant burped out. Can you clear up the sequence of events for me? When was the new cap on/off.

Look closely in the rad neck where the cap is supposed to seal. There are two sealing surfaces. The top of the neck, and a smaller annular surface below that. Are they smooth, and free of any flaws that would prevent the cap from sealing? I see some bad reviews on Amazon for this rad. I would’ve recommended a Denso from Rockauto, but too late for that.

I don’t see how a t’stat could cause this. But lemme guess where the stat is from... Autozone?
Sorry, I took off the old radiator cap and a small amount of coolant spilled out. Then I replaced it with the new cap. Started my car and steam still came out. And yeah the thermostat is from AutoZone. Hope I don't have to replace another radiator or thermostat. Getting tired of going back and forth with this car..
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,514 Posts
Ah, ok, thx for clearing that up.
Then I replaced it with the new cap. Started my car and steam still came out.
Immediately? Or did it take some time to warm up before steam came out? Was it coming out forcefully, or was it possibly just the previously burped out coolant steaming off gently?
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
Top