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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well the first trip across resulted in a leaking radiator, thank god that happened in CT.

But now, in IOWA, the temp gauge started rising, had to pull over and right now am on the side of the highway.

I don't hear the aux fan kicking in, it was yesterday. I've had to run the AC for probably 50% of the time driving. I turn it off if I'm going up hills and try to turn it off half the time to save gas.

The engine is cooling down now and I'm going to try to get going and see if it stays ok. Any suggestions as to how to check relays (where are they? Can I swap relays with a relay that doesn't matter so much so see if it's a relay problem?). I'm on the road and have no idea what to do, I might be on the brink of a breakdown in a state where asana probably don't exist. The coolant and radiator seem fine. It's almost 90 deg and my car is packed to the brim. Will give it a go now and check back later but I feel like this might be an aux fan problem or an AC related problem ( if that's possible)

Thanks!!!!
 

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Unfortunately I can't help you with any of the relays, but in a pinch you can run your heat on full blast to help cool the car as the heater core will act like a small radiator(though that will be very uncomfortable). You don't want to run your AC if you're overheating, it will make things worse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
1). Meant to say engine temp, ha.

2)noticed after leaving car parked for 10min yesterday temp went up noticeably, drove and it went back down

3) engine temp today dangerously high after getting back ontohighway after rest stop, may have already been before getting back on but was fine before stopping

4). Driving now and temp ok and stable haven't tried AC yet

5)can AC cause cause temp rise if six fan faulty or can this damage AC if faulty...should I not use AC if aux is bad?

Edit: either AC or dropping to neutral or both causing temp to rise afraid to test this again though to narrow down...crap.. Will keep updated
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
AC seems to cause engine temp to rise after 1min. Coasting on highway does not in neutral. Engine running slightly hotter than usual regardless but seems safe and stable otherwise.

Does aux fan run sometimes at highway speed? Please don't let me down in Iowa, trusty Saab....ahhh!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Edit: AC maybe not to blame, I think car is just running slightly hotter than usual, can't confirm
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Confirmed that AC makes temp rise, also that engine runs slightly hotter w/o it, and temp gets very high after parking and turning off.

Regarding running slightly hotter than usual:
Temp has always read slightly above halfway mark, but now reads 10:00 position, could faulty gauge been affected by recent heat spikes and now reads 10 or is engine actually running slightly hotter than usual I have no clue.

Temp señsor replaced 1-2 Years ago btw
 

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Sounds like your fan isn't kicking on, the heat from the AC condenser is probably making it worse when you run the AC. The relays are under the hood in the fuse box, you could try swapping the high and low speed relays. I would try and run 12V directly to the fan and see if it turns on, if it does just leave it in place and pull the wire when you stop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks so much, looks Like 2 plugs near the aux fan, one for high one for low? Will try 12v on either if I can find wires. Need to fIgure out which relays are fan relays can't remember if the fusebox lid labels relays but will check next gas stop
 

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That's right about the two plugs. The 'low' fan plug runs through a low-ohm high-wattage wirewound resistor, the 'high' plug runs directly through the fan motor. The high and low fan relays are in the relay box under the hood just in front of the driver A-pillar, labels should be on the underside of the box cover. You'll probably also want to check the fan fuse and make sure it's OK.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I put the low fan relay in place of the high fan relay and nothing happened. The high relay wouldn't fit where the low relay was. Engine temp was almost red, it's overheating when I get off the highway. I have audio wires to wire the fan to the battery just don't want to put the positive/neg wire in the opposite places and fry the fan or something, if that's possible? You'd think Id know more about electrical stuff, oops
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I tried wiring, neither plugs that go to the fan are doing anything. Does this mean the fan motor is dead? Or could a switch other than the relays and fuses be dead? The other thing could be just the wiring to the fan being bad but I don't really have the means right now to bypass them, and it seems pretty difficult to do that. I don't have an ohm meter to test the plugs for infinite resistance, I guess that would be the next step. Going to get on the highway for now and try to make it to Indiana and go from there...lots of miles before hitting the east coast...
 

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If you connected the wires directly to the battery (that is what I would do to rule anything out) and the fan didn't spin then I would say the motor is dead (try turning it by hand to make sure it isn't jammed, make sure you disconnect the battery though, the fan can kick on with the engine off and you dont wanna lose any fingers). There should be 3 wires leading to the fan assembly, black, green and white, black is ground, green is +12V for low speed (it runs through a wire wound resistor like chromatic mentioned) and then white is +12V for high speed (runs directly to the fan). Just connect the white wire to the +ve terminal of the battery and black to ground.

Also check the wiring on the fan assembly itself, it is subject to extreme heat and the insulation often flakes off.
 

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im not too knowledgeable on AC systems but i am pretty good at overheating issues while driving. roll those windows down and turn the heat on. i always point the vents toward the windows. make sure you have enough coolant, i know people who know lots about cars and sometimes forget to check coolant levels before going on long trips then wonder why the vehicle is over heating. also if you can, remove the thermostat if things get too out of hand. just trying to thing of some bandaids till you make it to your destination. oh make sure nothing is blocking your radiator too. and stay out of the boost as much as possible. also if i run the AC in my chevy s10 in the summer, its just enough to make my engine temp rise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks for the help, yeah I checked to see if it was jammed but it wasn't, and matched all the right wires, still nothing. So it must be dead in some way.

After testing it more and more with the AC it seems like it pretty much stabilizes on the highway with the AC on, however it does raise the temp a bit. I'm able to use AC enough to keep cool though thankfully, but I turn it off because I don't like the raised temp..Does the auxiliary fan turn on during highway use with AC usually?

Going to just try and make it back the last 1000 miles without getting it fixed, can't bear the thought of paying someone labor for that, or waiting a couple days for parts and paying for hotels. :roll:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, I've never seen the temp rise because of AC being turned on before, so I assume it's because of the aux fan being dead.
 

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Excessive loads on the engine (like running the AC compressor) will cause the engine to work header, and thus more heat. While cruising at highway speeds the engine should be able to cool itself from air going the radiator. If it's not, it could be several things:

1. Radiator fins clogged with dust, dirt, salt deposits from winter. Running a garden hose's water through the fins (gentle flow of water so brittle fins are NOT damaged). You'll see dirty water come out the other side. Once water is clear, move on to another section until everything is clear.

2. Tap water running in the system with coolant will cause deposits to build up over time, reducing the efficiency of the radiator. Usually need a new radiator to correct the problem.

3. Thermostat failing.

4. Coolant sensor failing and not kicking on the fan.

5. Fan is bad. Buy some wires and jump the fan. Disconnect BOTH plugs at the fan. Try jumping the "High" side directly to the battery and make sure to observe polarity. If you do this as a temporary fix, MAKE SURE TO USE A FUSED WIRE WITH 15-20 AMP FUSE, AND MAKE SURE THE WIRES ARE AT LEAST THE SAME GAUGE AS THE FAN'S WIRES OR THICKER TO AVOID AN ELECTRICAL FIRE.

6. Your gauge is bad and giving false temp readings.

7. Water pump is failing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Thermostat was replaced a year or so ago, hopefully it isn't stuck. But unlikely I hope since the fan isn't working when wired directly. Hopefully it's just the fan that's causing all these problems.

I thought the AC raised engine temp but stabilized - I was wrong - it raises it and if I leave it on for a good 5min on the highway (I did this a couple times and forgot it was on) the engine temp will go right up to the red. Luckily both times I forgot about it, it was just barely under red (although who knows how reliable that crappy temp gauge is - 'normal' engine temp has a gauge that is inbetween 9 oclock and 10 oclock, I never could figure out why, even with a new thermostat and new engine temp sensor last year).

Made it back yesterday after driving 16 and a half hours straight in one day. So that makes a completed drive over 3 days from Colorado to MA...with a broken aux fan..and a car so loaded the rear was sagging..hahaha...the saab must hate me. Managed to find gas at places within 5min of the highway, same with food and pee stops. Was able to use the AC on and off without overheating.

Had some scares in PA near Scranton where construction was backing up traffic, had to pull some sketchy maneuvers to keep the car rolling...lol..luckily didn't hit any serious congestion or I would have had to pull over and wait til the engine cooled. The heat trick bought some time. But man does that thing heat up in 90 deg weather fast when you're going under 40mph. In the cooler states I had some more time to play with and it didn't overheat so fast.

Only thing was after scranton insanity, when the temp went almost red, I got moving and it went down, but was going up a hill and the check engine light came on. I'm hoping it's nothing to do with a ruined cat. converted or something (running with a hot engine this whole trip - could it have changed the gas/air mixture - and messed up my cat/o2 sensors?). The cat was new and aftermarket a year ago. Hoping that I don't have to deal with that BS all over again. Just in time for an expired inspection sticker too..

Thanks for the help! Will see what the CEL is all about soon, and hopefully replace the aux fan on my own, thankfully without paying some mechanic obscene amounts of $ for a simple job. (Paid some guy in CT $650 for a new radiator and labor, a job that took him about 5-6 hours when he said it should have taken 2-4...grr)
 
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