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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just as the title says, I was wondering what the normal operating temperature range is for a stock 2.4L engine, assumed to have a standard thermostat.

What temperature should I begin to be concerned?

I am driving my 2.4L Sky "without" the large main air duct that directs frontal air into the radiator. I am also "missing" the low-hanging air scoop that directs under-car air to the radiator. I have those two parts on-order, but am driving the car while waiting for them to arrive. I don't want to be foolish and do damage to the engine. We took the car to church today, a 30 mile round trip and the coolant temp never exceeded 207 degrees in this 80's warm weather.
 

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Anything up to 250 will not hurt the engine. At 250 your coolant temp light will come on and AC will not function.

We were on a run in 90+ degree weather running up a mountain for 7 miles. No car running AC and 15 cars of all types...Solstices, Skys, GXPs, Red Lines, base models, manual and auto trans...not a one was under 230.

Usually if the termps go above 235, make sure your AC AND heater are off. Turning on the heat in these cars can make things worse. If you start to go above 240, get to the side of the road and stop. If temps go above 245 while stopped and idling, shut down the car.

At 207 you are more than okay.
 

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I agree that 207 is not a problem. While driving under non-extreme conditions at 80 ambient, mine will run at 196-7.

You don't have a problem, but should still watch for one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for all the replies. I will continue to monitor coolant temp, at least until I get the new cooling-parts installed. It sounds like I am well within "normal" for now.

I was surprised to read that running the heater would make matters worse. Historically in all other cars I am familiar with, releasing heat from the heater core helps to cool the engine. In some vehicles like the Fiero, running the a/c cooled the engine in stop-n-go traffic because the electric cooling fan would run constantly when the a/c was on.
 

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If you do get to above 235, if you know you have a good battery....leave the key in accessory mode with the engine off. This will leave the cooling fan run. Let it run for several minutes and then start it. See where you're at. Another thing, is if you have a 5spd, leave the car in gear while coasting down to about 800rpm. Do not hit the clutch, do not put it in neutral and coast.... All of the cars have Direct Engine Fuel Cut Off (DEFCO, DFCO, DCO...all terms I've heard). What happens is when you're in gear above a set rpm (I think its 1800rpm) the engine shuts all fuel off to the cylinders to allow fresh, cool air into the engine to rapidly cool the engine. If I'm at 200 degrees and doing 75mph...and I let off the gas and leave the car in gear, I can be as low as 175 degrees in 75 degree temperatures.
 

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Thanks for all the replies. I will continue to monitor coolant temp, at least until I get the new cooling-parts installed. It sounds like I am well within "normal" for now.

I was surprised to read that running the heater would make matters worse. Historically in all other cars I am familiar with, releasing heat from the heater core helps to cool the engine. In some vehicles like the Fiero, running the a/c cooled the engine in stop-n-go traffic because the electric cooling fan would run constantly when the a/c was on.
Yea the way our heater cores pick up and return the coolant is a bit messed up. You are right, the heater core will cool it down. Problem is the pick up and return are right over the Thermostat so the hot coolant from the engine is picked up, cooled in the core, then returned right on top of the thermostat. Thus it can keep the thermostat closed. The temp sensor is a bit further down from the thermostat and heater core lines right by where the coolant circulates through the engine.
 
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