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Venture van heater blowing cold air/temp gauge fluctuating

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This forum post has messages dated from 12/05/08 through 04/17/11, please be sure to read all the messages. If you feel it is old or outdated, please follow up with a question or comment and someone may be able to update it, or reply with newer information if you have it.


Forum Post
12/05/08 00:17
Eric

Venture van heater blowing cold air/temp gauge fluctuating

My 1999 chevy venture van''s heater only blows hot air at highway speeds. When we stop or slow down, it only blows cold air. About the time this started, I noticed that the temp gauge bouncing around alot. Gauge is at normal levels on the highway, but goes very hot, then cold when slowing down and stopping. Bad water pump/thermostat? Coolant levels is good. Any ideas?

thanks!

Eric

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Tony

I have the same problem

when you find out the cause please let me know

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kerfy

same thing with mine at idle the temp gage goes way up then when i rev it up the heat comes back and the temp goes down

when i try for real high revs it surges ???

related??

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Chris

I have the same fluctuation in my temp hand. I started by replacing the water pump, thermostat, temp sending unit, and radiator cap, but those did not solve the problem. I recently put on a new set of intake gaskets for the both upper and lower (5hr job), but that has not solved the problem either. Now I suspect an air bubble in the cooling system after all that, but no matter how much air I bleed from the system I continue to get the fluctuation. Did any of you solve the problem yet?
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kevin

i have the same problem ....cannot resolve....please someone help!
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Michael Gray

Try replacing the Serpentine belt, sounds like it might be slipping.
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Tressel

My 2001 Venture Cabin Heater was week and finally it totally gave up. I have Flushed the cooling system and replaced the Thermostat 3 months ago. Engine temp is steady @ 85 deg. Line goes to Heater is nice and hot comming out of core is cold.

Before I replace the costly heater core I would like to check the pipe piece attached to the head with a priming screw on top. This should be doing the all important coolant flow in and out of the heater core. When take a sharp left turn while driving I get a short blow of nice hot air for for few seconds. could that mean the heater core is not blocked?

Please help me at your earliest as i have to drive in very cold winter in Toronto.

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Jim

I own a Venture 2000 and had the following symptoms: Cabin heater would blow cold unless I turned a sharp corner or revved the engine or ran at highway speeds. Occasionally a rapidly fluctuating temperature gage, but not always. Bubbles coming into the coolant over flow tank, frequent, but not all the time. Smell of combustion gases in the coolant over flow tank. Occasionally the "Low Coolant" warning light would come on. Gurgling sound coming from the dash, frequently. (Needed to have the blower turned to low or off to hear it.)

After a great deal of investigating and reading and talking with mechanics (and I am a relatively ok backyard mechanic myself) I concluded that I had a bad head gasket. (This is a relatively common problem with these 3.4 l engines. Poorly designed intake manifold gaskets and problematic Dexcool coolant initiate a coolant problem which, if not properly dealt with, can cause the engine to overheat, warping the head(s) and causing a bad head gasket.)

I tried two different types of coolant additives to try and seal the problem. (Moroso and Thermagasket) without success. I am not saying they don't work, they just didn't work in my case.

Facing a potential $2400.00 repair, I decided to replace the head gaskets myself. (I'm fortunate to have family that own a heated garage.) There's a good reason that this job costs $2400.00 to do. It is a huge undertaking. Sure enough, both headgaskets were bad, and in fact the heads were so severely pitted next to the area where the gaskets were bad that I needed to replace the heads as well. My costs, about $1200.00, and about 30-40 hours of my time. I now have a well running van, with all previous symptoms addressed except one, the lack of heat. I now need to replace the heater core (12 hour job, $200.00)because the coolant additives I used to try and fix the head gasket leak prior to my head gasket repair have plugged my heater core to the degree that it only provides low grade heat.

I will NEVER buy another GM... EVER...Ever...ever...

Jim

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Tressel

Jim

Thanks for your input. Everyting you mentioned made perfect sence to me. I have the identical cabin heating problem. I took to a garage and got it cleaned and paid $ 250 and it worked only for just 2 days. Now I know as a fact that it is nothing but the heater core instead of paying another $ 700. I am a boat tech and got a fair idea. I am going to buy a Heater Core and install it myself. Last summer I removed everything from inside and got stuck as I could not remove the QUICK COUPLINGS ATTACHED TO IN/OUT HOSES BETWEEN THE ENGINE AND CORE. Can you please findout the way to remove those couplers. I am planing to go for it this weekend.

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jim

I HAD THE HEATER , AND THE GAUGE PROBLEM . THE SYSTEM HAS AN AIR POCKET. I HAD TO KEEP RUNNING THE ENGINE TO HALF WAY ON GAUGE. THAN WAIT FOR IT TO COOL OFF 3 TO 4 TIMES AND KEEP ADDING COOLANT TO THE RADIATOR EVERY TIME IT COOLED OFF TILL I GOT ALL THE AIR OUT.
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Tressel

I have no cooling water priming problem. My water level and gauge is steady at just a scale before halfway when running.

My big Question is the way to remove Heater Core in/out Water connections attached from engine. They are not hose clamps but special quick couplers. Wonder whether I need a special tool for that?

Thanks

11
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Truman

I have an 01 Venture that I just got (great purchase...chuckle chuckle). So, I have similar problems with the temperature bouncing all over without heat and on other days it works. So, I was going to "burp" the engine this weekend to see if that would help and now I find that the coolant leaks out almost as fast as I put it in. I am not sure where, but it is leaking out underneath from around the transmission pan. Any ideas? I am thinking head gasket...yikes. Any help would be appreciated as I am not all that mechanical...Should I try a sealant?
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01 venturer

Try checking your sensors i have same problem and i think there are 2 sensors that control the fans and another get those checked.
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John

I have had the same problem with my 2000 Venture aswell as a 2001 Caviler and 2000 S-10. On all 3 of the GM vehicles it was a highly restricted or clogged heater core each time. From what I was able to find out is that you must drain and replace the Dexcool every couple of years our it has a tendency to turn into a jello like substance in the heater core (don't know why). I have switched my GM cars all over to Prestone 50/50 because the Dexcool seems to be so problematic and having to backflush a heater core every couple of years is a pain.
14
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SkiMask

The fluctuating temperature gauge definitely denotes head gasket problem. Had mine replaced last year. Runs great since. The Dexcool coolnat rots out engines.
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bill

have a 2000 chevy venture, it is blowing cold air instead of blowing hot air when the heater is on, changed the thermostat and it didn't make a difference, i am assuming it is the heater core and wondered can it be flushed out without taking it out of the van? any help would be appreciated, thanks
16
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Jim

You all have experienced the same things. The coolants system is one of the most common thing that gets neglected on a motor vehicle. If they are not back flushed on a regular schedule the system will slowly plug itself. By not draining the coolant every year and replacing with fresh water and anti-freeze the improperly mixed anti-freeze and water will cause the system to rust from the inside out. The debris will trap inside the heater core as it contains the smallest chamber in order for it to produce a steady flow of hot air while a fan blows on it regardless of RPMs. Your heater cores are on the way to being fully plugged. Parts stores have a back flow flush kit for around 6.00 which will allow you to flush the sytem yourself. The trick is to isolate the core itself and flush it out seperately once the rest of the sytem has been flushed. This is done by pinching off the inlet before the flush valve and only running water through the core. If it does not flow freely at low pressure then it will need to be replaced. Newer vehicles regardless of brand are all difficult to replace a heater and in most cases require pulling the entire dash out. This is why the repairs bills are so high. Most cores are less than a hundred dollars unless your vehicle has two cores.
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jay

irecantly had the power steering pully fly off and the belt as well since then im having the same problems i did the burping for about a 1/2 hour and finaly no more bubling and had heat but the fan senser didnt seem to kick on at the rite time wich resaulted in getting hot now i have to burp it all over again plus replace the fan senser god i hope this works cause i still owe 6grand on the effing mo fo well ill let you know what happins
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Fred

I have a 2001 venture van.I also have had problems with over heating, temperature gage going up when stoped or slow.First thing i did was check the oil to see if there was any coolant in the oil.So i thought water pump or thermostat.I had taken out the themostat put it in to a pot of boiling water and it opened fine.Now i check the pump it was good too.As i was going to put the serpentine belt back on i started checking pullies and when i spun the power steering pump pully it was really stiff I replaced the power steering pump and all my over heating problems vanished.

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Fred in Mo.

I have a 99 Venture Van, and having the same problems. I have not checked belt or pulleys as I haven't heard any squealing. Have you? Fred
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elainekarch

I have a 2000 Venture and had the heads gasket, manual fold gasket, thermostat, radiator cap, radiator flushed, heater switch all replaced by a chevy dealer 10 months ago and now I am having problems again with the heat that blows out of the vent is cold. No heat again and I have paid thousand of $ to chevy to repair and it is still not working right.does anyone have any suggestion besides junk the piece of chevy.
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John

I have a 98 chevy venture i just got and it was running perfect, but there was not very much heat blowing out of the dash at all and the temp gauge was in the normal range.

Now last night i start the van, let it warm up and then i went to drive home and on the ride there was ZERO heat comming out of the vents and the temp gauge SHOT up to the middle of normal range. So instead of the temp needle facing 10 oclock it was around 1 oclock.

I just found out there is a summer thermostat instead of a winter one in the engine and there is cardboard on the front of the radiator.

I checked the rad fluid and there's lots in there, still liquid at -40'c and the regular shade of green so looks like regular 50/50 mix.

Aside from switching the thermostat to a winter one and changing the rad fluid could there be another reason it just started blowing frozen air all of a sudden?

Thanks.

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Tina

I had my head gasket replaced 2 1/2 years ago in my 1998 Venture, and I have started to have the same problem again!!! We just replaced the water pump and serpentine belt, because they said they were bad and the van is still blowing out cold air (fluctuating temp gauge, and squeaking belt noise). This is getting ridiculous, no wonder the company is where it is at now (Toyota would fix it, or recall it believe it or not).
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amanda

HEY MAYBE SOME ONE CAN HELP ME. MY CAR 2005 NISSAN ALTIMA) THE HEATER STARTED GETTING COLD WHEN I WOULD IDLE. THE NEXT DAY MY HEAT HAND WENT ALL THE WAY UP. I HAD THE THERMOSTAT REPLACED AND THE HEAT HAND ONLY GOES UP EVERY SO OFTEN. I DRIVE ABOUT 45 MIN TO WORK AND IT WILL GET HOT ABOUT THE TIME I GET TO WORK I PULL OVER AND IT GOES BACK DOWN. THEN DO THE SAME THING ON THE WAY HOME. IT ALWAYS GOES BACK DOWN BUT IM AFFRAID IT WILL HURT MY MOTOR HELP!!!
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wayne

I have a 2000 chevy venture, it is blowing warm air but

not very hot. All fluid levels are up and liquid is very clear

might I have an air lock and how do I get rid of it

or is my temperature contol knob malfunctioning.

wayne

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