Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My 2004 Chrysler PT Cruiser is overheating

asked by on

I took it in, and they ran a diagnostic on the cooling system, and replaced the thermostat housing. It overheated again about a week later, and they replaced the radiator cap. It overheated again about five days later, and when I took it back they let it run for about 30-40 minutes, but it didn't overheat. They said the fan is working properly, and kicking on when it should. They couldn't find any other problem. However, when I actually drive it and the car is in motion, after about 20 minutes it starts to overheat, and you can actually hear the fluid bubbling. Do you have any idea what could be wrong?

My car has 102257 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there - there are a couple of possibilities. The simplest and most likely possible case, based on the recent thermostat replacement, is that the cooling system was not properly bled of air pockets, and is boiling coolant inside the engine (the gurgling sound you hear), much like a teapot. Bleeding the coolant system properly will cure this scenario. The more serious possibility is a blown head gasket, whereby engine combustion is leaking into the cooling system, "super-heating" the coolant, causing it to boil internally. This will require a more serious repair job. I would recommend having a Car Is Overheating Inspection completed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to diagnose this problem, get an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. My 2004 Chrysler PT Cruiser is overheating

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Interior full of mold

No. If your interior has got flooded or had water leaks an mold has been growing in the panels and carpet then have a professional interior specialist check to see if the mold damaged parts can be replaced.

Q: My temperature gauge is reading hot. Just had my thermostat replace last week. They found no other leaks, pressure test was good s

It's possible that your temperature gauge is operating erratically which would be an electrical problem (sending unit, gauge, wiring, etc.) rather than an actual overheating problem. The most common causes of overheating include low coolant level, a faulty thermostat, a...

Q: My gear shift housing Is made of pastic a piece of it broke off.

It sounds like your shift cable has failed, and needs to be replaced. The part you're describing sounds like the plastic end of the cable, and it attaches to a metal part of the shifter. When this breaks, the entire...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...