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Q: what needs replaced?

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i have been having issues with the temperature gauge randomly dropping down and the then going all the way to hot so i will pull over and then it goes back to normal running temperature

My car has 176000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The erratic getting hot and cold is most likely from the thermostat is stuck or sticking. You should also check to see if the fan clutch is locking up correctly and may need to be replaced also at the same time. The clutch for the fan should lock up when temperature is hot coming from the radiator. The thermostat will block flow of coolant through the radiator.

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