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daveid 07-13-2008 11:25 AM

Did I overheat my engine?
Yesterday I was on the interstate and stuck in traffic. I normally run 180-190 cruising on the highway but once i got stuck in traffic my radiator couldnt keep up. I ended up hitting 258 when I pulled over on the side of the road and it hit about 262 degrees. When I parked it was boiling over and spraying out my overflow tube.
Did I overheat my engine or was it just doing what it was suppose to to relive the pressure? The engine is a 454 with a 12-16lb radiator cap on it.


woodz428 07-13-2008 11:55 AM

I would guess you did overheat it, however that doesn't mean it is ruined or damaged. As long as you didn't slosh some cold water into while it was hot. The big question would be what caused it. I would first examine the thermostat, they can get stuck creating that problem, although usually they stick open. Do some checking before any further usage. It could have blown a head gasket creating the problem and in most cases water would appear in the oil. A cracked head also could have happened and is pressurizing the system. Both of the latter can be done by pressure testing the system.

Rob Keller 07-13-2008 12:01 PM

Well puking coolant is a good sign of overheating.. a cooling problem.

:welcome: Congratulations for paying attention :thumbup:

How long in traffic did it take to go over?

Next is how old is everything ?

There are a lot of things to be looked @.

What is the vehicle?

Are you running a straight fan or a fan clutch?

How old is the water pump ? Is the water flowing?

How old are the hoses do they collapse when the motor is revved?

R :thumbup:

Jmark 07-13-2008 12:21 PM

Like the others have accuratly stated, you need to address the cause of the high temp in traffic.

262 is not critically overheated, especially since ( I hope) you have iron heads on the iron block. Where problems arise is when aluminum heads shift on an iron block, making a mess of head gaskets. But you will know more after you fire it back up after it cools. Hopefully, it will be fine. (I have 2 chevy trucks that will hit 250-260 on a long pull up a 6% grade in the summer with the A/C on. So far, no problems.

daveid 07-13-2008 01:17 PM

Well i guess i forgot to mention everything. After I pulled over, I let it sit till it got to about 210. Once it got there, I had some water in the back of my truck that was in the sun so it was luke warm at least. I put that water in the radiator which was half full of water/coolant still. I still let it sit till it got to 180, started it back up and it seemed fine. The stupid part was I still drove it home.
Its a 63 chevy c10 with a 454 that was built about 5 years ago, but only has about 1000 miles on it. Everything was brand new when built. The radiator is about 3 years old, and its a universal summit radiator. I have a feeling though its just not big enough for a big block. I takes forever to warm up to 180 but once it gets to 180 then if im to sit at a stop light, it will jump to 200 real fast. The hoses seem fine as they are new as well and the fan is an electric fan with no shroud.

I was sitting in traffic for maybe 10-15 mins when it hit 260 and it was at 180 crusing before that. Unfortunatly too, the heads are aluminum but the block is an iron block. I didnt check the oil but I will do that asap.

thanx guys for all the responses.

daveid 07-13-2008 02:10 PM

i just checked the oil and it looks perfect

boatbob2 07-13-2008 02:29 PM

overheating BBC
Hi,if you drove it home OK,and theres no water in the oil, youre in good shape. BUT,i would put a shroud on the fan to rad. and an oil cooler cant hurt.

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