Cat c12 engine temp

Discussion in 'Heavy Duty Diesel Truck Mechanics Forum' started by Canary379, Dec 5, 2023.

  1. Canary379

    Canary379 Light Load Member

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    So here’s my dilemma. 2001 Cat c12 2KS engine. Engine doesn’t want to come up over 150ish degrees when cruising along. It’ll go to 185ish when under load and climbing the gears but once cruising it’ll come back down to 150-175ish. It varies. Typically closer to 150.
    Any thoughts as too what it could be? I have already replaced the thermostats and that didn’t do the job. What else could it be? I do have an injector going bad that needs to be replaced but don’t think that has any to do with it.
    Any help would be greatly appreciated

    thanks
     
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  3. Big Road Skateboard

    Big Road Skateboard Road Train Member

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    Have you verified the gauge is accurate? Fan stuck on?
     
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  4. Canary379

    Canary379 Light Load Member

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    Apr 13, 2012
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    Fan isn’t stuck on and it’s been in the 30’s here in the Chicago area. I am assuming the gauge is good. My reasoning for that assumption is my oil pressure gauge rises in relation to the lower engine temps.
     
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  5. JB7

    JB7 Medium Load Member

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    "I am assuming the gauge is good." You may be right but it is best to verify. Tap into the computer and see what temp the ECM is reading.
    Water pump - is the coolant circulating?
    Temp sending unit
     
  6. Canary379

    Canary379 Light Load Member

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    Water pump is 2 mths old. Also, if the water wasn’t circulating wouldn’t the coolant be overheating instead of staying cooler
     
  7. JB7

    JB7 Medium Load Member

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    "Water pump is 2 mths old." Not relevant. What brand part was installed? A lot of cheap junk out there. While we're on the subject of parts what brand thermostats were installed? Maybe the pump impeller is not turning which could cause the issue you are having. See if you can tell if the coolant is circulating. Or you may have to remove the fan and fan clutch (at least the belt(s)) and turn the water pump by hand to see if there is any resistance.

    "if the water wasn’t circulating wouldn’t the coolant be overheating" Not necessarily. When cruising there is a lot more airflow and with the cold air ("it’s been in the 30’s") at cruising speed (think wind chill and the air is even colder) the temp gauge would drop like you are seeing. If the temp gauge is accurate which needs to be verified.
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  8. Canary379

    Canary379 Light Load Member

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    Apr 13, 2012
    Illinois
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  9. Canary379

    Canary379 Light Load Member

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    Apr 13, 2012
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    Also, water pump is gear driven not belt so I’m sure it’s turning otherwise I’d have bigger issues
     
  10. JB7

    JB7 Medium Load Member

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    That's good. How long have you owned the truck? As in have you had it for years and it never did this or this is the first winter you've had it?
    What temp did at run at in the summer when the air temp was much higher and not in the 30's? Did the problem start after the water pump was replaced or other work done on the truck?

    According to a post on The Truckers Report forum, the Caterpillar C12 engine should run between 190°F and 210°F and be controlled by the fan cycling. Depending on the fan in temperature, it could go as high as 225°F1.

    So I'm wondering if it has too much radiator capacity (cooling more than the engine and truck were designed for). Wrong thermostat opening temp. Even though the fan is not stuck on as you say, if the fan is coming on too early/too much due to a faulty switch would cause what problem you are having.

    I would verify that the thermostat(s) are not stuck open and the correct one is installed.
    The ECM controls the fan so need to get into the system to see what the ECM is reading for coolant temp.....
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2023
  11. Goodysnap

    Goodysnap Road Train Member

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    I know you said new thermostats. Did you fit new thermostat seals in the housing? Any corrosion or pitting in the housings.

    Either you have a thermostat opening too early or water is somehow circulating when they are closed.
     
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