2nd Gen Ram Tech1994-2001 Rams: This section is for TECHNICAL discussions only, that involve the 1994 through 2001 Rams. For any non-tech discussions, please direct your attention to the "General discussion/NON-tech" sub sections.
I was wondering what is the normal operating temp for the 360\318? My truck goes half way between 200, 260. Are these truck suppose to run that hot? I don't have much knowledge on the RAM's but either way i'm mechincally incline. I'm thinking it either bad coolant or a bad thermostat. Fan pulls good and the coolant isn't brown but I think it could be the original coolant. I've pin pointed out those 2 things.
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Our trucks came stock with 195 degree thermostats IIRC. I had a 180 during the winter time, and when I put my stock one back in, it would stick like what yours is doing. Just replace it with a 195, I believe o'reilly's sells one that's 192 degrees with a pinhole in it that actually runs 195.
I live in PA and we don't have an O'Reilly's. I actually thought about going with a 180 degree t-stat. I'll be towing on hot summer days. I have a 180 t-stat on my Neon and it has kept it fairly cool. It is safe to run 180 on a 360?
Thanks for the input fellas. I haven't flushed the system yet. I got the truck in rough shape and I had to address the most important things. I hope I can be able to change the coolant and t-stat before I do my first pull. The coolant doesn't have the brown-ish color to it. But it is on my list to it real soon. Anybody have a part number for the 180 t-stat?
During the winter I kept my 180 degree in my truck and got worse gas mileage because of it. The computer thinks that the truck isn't ever warmed yup and doesn't adjust the air/fuel ratio accordingly until it reaches normal operating temperature (195)
Vehicle: 2007 Ram 1500 4x2 Big Horn aka The Silver Bullet
Location: Norman, Okla-mobile-homa
It wouldn't hurt to get the timing checked. I have battled issues with my truck running hot and argued here with people telling me to install a 180º thermostat that it wouldn't do me any good. It turns out that my truck is running 19.7º advanced timing, meaning it's an issue with the PCM.
I run the OEM recommened 195 thermostat and it doesn't get near that hot, even in the summer in Texas.
I could be wrong but if the thermostat fails, it fails open meaning coolant will always be running through the system and it will take it longer to heat up.
I encourage you to get this addressed ASAP, meaning before you do any towing. If it's overheating, something is wrong and a cooler thermostat isn't going to fix it. If you don't address it you're risking serious damage.
Set aside a day and do it right. Drain the coolant from the block, flush the system, replace the thermostat and antifreeze (70% antifreeze-30% distilled water), and change the radiator cap. And by flush, i don't mean just run the garden hose through it for a little while. There are better ways but the Prestone Flush should do a good job. If you can work it into the budget, change the hoses (probablly $60) and water pump ($60) while you're at it.
Also, make sure you remove any debris in the radiator fins, that can cause it to run hot.
Seriously, make this a piroirty. I didn't 15 years ago and it was an expensive mistake.
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