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Thread: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

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    Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    One day I went to apply for a position as a tech. The head tech or foreman was doing the hiring. When I went into his office, on his desk sat a stack of applications maybe a foot or more tall. He sticks my application on top and asked one question. I answered this question and was hired on the spot. He told me no other tech could get this correct.

    This my friends you can not look up or google.

    Here is the question lets see who knows their stuff:

    You remove the thermostat on your water cooled engine for it is stuck open. You do not have another so just put the thermostat housing back in place and fill with anti-freeze water mix..

    What will happen to this engine and why?

    I will wait one day before answering this. But maybe someone knows this.

    Tony

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Depends on the engine and what kind of service it's in. Not enough information to accurately answer the question.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Quote Originally Posted by cvairwerks View Post
    Depends on the engine and what kind of service it's in. Not enough information to accurately answer the question.
    Plenty of info..You just do not know the answer.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Quote Originally Posted by cvairwerks View Post
    Depends on the engine and what kind of service it's in. Not enough information to accurately answer the question.
    This exact question was on my final examine. I aced that examine. The question was asked just as I asked it. If I would have answered with this answer I would have flunked the class. I was top in my class.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Got news...my VW diesel will get to operating temps without a thermostat, but will not maintain temp if the ambient is below certain levels or airflow thru the radiator is above a certain rate. Park it with no movement and it will take multiple hours to get to temp, if you are below a certain ambient level. The gas motor on the MJ-1's at work will not get to temp except in the summer time without a thermostat, unless it's over a certain ambient temp. I have a friend that runs Stewart and Stevenson gensets without thermostats all year long, but they control the coolant temp via radiator shutters.

    So service info does matter in reality.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    You may have aced your class, but I suspect your answer depends on facts not revealed in your question.

    Having received training and lectured on liquid cooling of internal combustion engines, I know of engine designs where cvairwerks' response was appropriate.

    I will wait for your answer as I want to see just how far your ego will take this. :^)

    Regards.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    I find these comments very interesting. Just not correct.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.


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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Remember we are talking about an engine that has had the Thermostat removed and the thermostat housing just replaced with new o-ring gasket and then filled with anti-freeze water mix.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    I suspect this is going to be another one of those "the engineers and scientists are all wrong" threads. Probably the "coolant moving too fast to take the heat away" fallacy.

    Dana

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Lets see if this works......

    Thermostat is designed to open at a preset temperature to allow coolant to flow from engine to radiator after coolant is heated by engine. Thermostat regulates temperature by opening and closing as it reacts to changes in coolant temperature.

    If thermostat is stuck open or not present there is no restriction to flow and coolant will flow to radiator regardless of temperature. Coolant temperature will not be regulated and will most likely result in low engine temperatures. The oil system will not be heated enough to properly remove moisture and viscosity will not be normal......etc.

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Quote Originally Posted by N8053H View Post
    This exact question was on my final examine. I aced that examine. The question was asked just as I asked it. If I would have answered with this answer I would have flunked the class. I was top in my class.
    Obviously syntax and grammar were not part of the "examine"
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    “If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull$hi+.” ― W.C. Fields

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.


    My advice regarding thermostats: "When it doubt, take it out!"

    All a thermostat does is stop the flow or radiator fluid through the system, until the engine heats up to its normal running temperature, typically 170F, and then it opens up. At 70F outside on a nice day, this is not needed at all and the engine will find its own happy running temperature.. But if its winter time, and 32F outside, or if you are just cranking up your car at any resting room temperature, the thermostats purpose is to stop the flow and stop engine cooling to allow the engine to heat up to about where it should be.

    I've REMOVED the thermostat completely before from my cars when they went bad and "stuck closed" and were overheating. A removed thermostat is basically the same as having a thermostat "super open" all the time, as it's not there at all to impede the cooling system flow. I've never seen one "stuck open" though I'm sure its possible. By default, on a car anyway, the spring holds them closed, not open. So when they fail, its usually almost always that they won't open and are "stuck closed". So I've had a lot of experience running cars with "always open" thermostats because I had taken them completely out. It may be reversed on an aircraft engine thermostat, but on a car thermostat, the default resting condition at room temperature is "closed" and restricting all fluid flow through your cooling system.

    If you have a thermostat stuck "open", or a thermostat not in there at all, in other words, totally open (very likely, if you drove one of my cars), what would happen is this:

    If you lived in the South (where I do) - it would take longer for the car to warm up to operating temperature (170 F), and may be harder to get to that point in the winter, but otherwise run fine and find its operating temperature at about 160-170F. There would be no overheating, unless your radiator leaked or was totally out of any kind of fluid or some other problem serious was going on with your car.

    If you lived in the North
    - it would take maybe forever for your engine to heat up, if it did, with a stuck open thermostat... and when it finally arrived at its operating temperature, it might be quite a bit lower than 170F... maybe 130-150. If you have an old car like me, you'd be rubbing your hands together wondering why no heat was coming out of your engine air warmed heater. Your car is still going to run just fine, maybe not as peppy, but it will get you where you're going.

    If you lived in Sub Artic North - well, its going to much more important to have a thermostat that works. Your engine will run cold, leading to incomplete combustion and probably carbon build up. It may be hard to keep it running and it may stall out sometimes as its cold. Gasoline burns a lot more efficiently if its warm and vaporizes more. Being cold, you'll get more oxygen into the cylinders, but your gasoline won't be as atomized and hyper. My dad told me of schemes in the old days to "pre-heat" or "super-heat" your gasoline before it enters the engine, to dramatically increase your fuel efficiency... and it worked... but such methods were also rather dangerous and explosive and were mostly abandoned for consumer vehicles.

    What will happen with a thermostat that is stuck closed (much more likely), in the summer time, is it will never open, only a little fluid will flow passed a tiny release hole in the thermostat, and your car will overheat, and leave you stranded by the side of the road, with lots of steam coming out from under your hood. The solution, if you want to get home, is to take the thermostat out and refill your radiator with 50/50 antifreeze/water, or just water if that's all you have. Which is usually why I was taking them out. Your car that was previously blowing steam like Old Faithful, will then run cool as a cucumber all the way home.

    Caveat: you can put a thermostat in backwards, at least on my cars, so be mindful of the directions you install them. I think the release hole is there, to allow some water past to heat up the back side, so that doing so won't be "fatal" and it will still operate fine.

    Caveat 2: at a part's counter, a guy may ask you if you want a 160F thermostat, 170F thermostat, or 180F thermostat. That's the temperature they open at. Some manufacturer's may recommend different temps to open at for their engine. Any recommendations ignored, if you live down south, you may want to fudge towards the 160 (open sooner)... up north, you may want to go with the 180 (open later). Plain water overheats at 220F, and 50/50% antifreeze + water at maybe 240-260F? I use to watch my temps careful... so when your needle was edging up past 180 and then to 200... and getting close to 220+ and boiling over... something was wrong... your thermostat was stuck closed, pull over, let it cool down, and pull that dead thermostat out. On my car, only 3 bolts.


    Move aside, maybe I just took your job. I couldn't say, I've never seen an aircraft thermostat, but I reckon' they are pretty much the same...
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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dana View Post
    I suspect this is going to be another one of those "the engineers and scientists are all wrong" threads. Probably the "coolant moving too fast to take the heat away" fallacy.

    Dana
    Please explain....

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    Re: Removing thermostat from water cooled engine.

    Remember I also landed a job with the answer I gave to this question.

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