Ford Contour While only built on a short time span, the Contour was very popular with people of all driving styles, from the base model making for a great family car, to the SVT making a great track toy.

1998 running cold

Old 01-24-2013, 02:47 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
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Unhappy 1998 running cold

My 98 Contour SE V6 is running cold. It gets above the bottom of the normal range but barely - once in awhile, it'll actually get a bit to the right but more often goes to right next to the bottom of the normal range & stays there. I've had the thermostat replaced (maybe they put in a faulty one; am having that checked tomorrow) & the coolant level's fine. Had the radiator flushed (which I think was just running a hose thru the coolant system - not great pressure). What is wrong with my car?? It runs GREAT, lots of power, gains power on hills, starts right away, runs evenly, just a great car - except that this must be a lot of wear & tear on my car, terrible gas mileage, & I live in a cold climate & *I'm freezing*.

Before they changed the thermostat/flushed it last summer, it ran a little warmer - don't know if that changed anything or if I just have a problem that's getting worse (don't want to blame them; good guys). They said it ran up to temp in the shop but it didn't when I drove it home. Anyone have any idea?

I think I lost the blower motor resistor (the car went 'click-click-click' & suddenly the blower only worked on high) the last time I drove it - getting that fixed tomorrow & I don't think that has anything to do with the problem with it running cold, which it's been doing for 1 1/2 yrs now, even in the summer. Help! *Freezing* (I live in Alaska) & wearing out my car...
Old 01-24-2013, 03:39 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 9,164

You need to make sure they installed the proper thermostat. Many times a 180 degree thermostat will get installed because they didn't have anything else. The vehicle requires a 195 degree thermostat. The higher stat is used to help run cleaner, provide more heat and also better fuel mileage.
Also , if the cooling fans come on too soon or run all the time that will prevent the engine from reaching correct operating temp. If you hear the fan(s) running when the engine is cool that would definitely have a bearing on the problem.
Old 05-08-2015, 01:20 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Los Angeles area
Posts: 3

Could be a stuck thermostat. I've had them stick closed and open. Best to put in a new one every coolant change.
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