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Q: 1999 Nissan Pathfinder hesitation and sputter when I accelerate

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Yesterday while driving my 1999 Nissan Pathfinder home from work, it began to hesitate and sputter as I attempted to accelerate. Even though I was pressing the gas pedal hard, it would not go beyond 30 miles per hour and would hesitate and sputter. I was able to get it home and at that time, after lifting the hood, the contents of the radiator were loudly heard boiling. The gauge indicated that the vehicle was overheating. My son waited a little while and then removed the cap off the radiator which released a volcano of coolant. I have since been told that my water pump is bad. Does that sound right based upon your expertise and experience? Also, my radiator burst last month, but the car did not overheat. Subsequently, I had the radiator replaced along with a new water pump. Thank you for your help.

My car has 200000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hello. If your radiator and water pump were...

Hello. If your radiator and water pump were recently installed, then those are likely not the components at fault, but it is still possible. If engine performance was greatly affected, it may be possible that there may be a blown head gasket. If the vehicle was severely overheated, this may also be a sign of a possible blown head gasket. This is even more likely on a high mileage vehicle.

I would check the oil for any signs of coolant contamination. Keep in mind that overheating can be caused by a wide variety of other cooling system issues. If this problem continues, I recommend having a trained professional inspect the overheating issue and hesitation problem in person, as both may be signs for serious concern.

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