How to Install a Car Thermostat

Installing a car thermostat is a fairly painless process. The engine has to be cool before attempting the install as you can burn yourself on the components.

1. Drain Coolant

Empty any remaining coolant from the radiator into a clean bucket.

2. Locate the Thermostat

Most automotive thermostats are found in a container on top of the radiator hose. There are a few vehicles that have the thermostat location under the hose. However, this installation is for top affixed thermostats only.

3. Remove the Covering

Using a screwdriver, remove the covering that the thermostat is located under. Be careful here, as the casing me be tough to get off. You may need to cautiously jiggle it until it loosens free.

4. Clean and Inspect

With a small soft brush, clean the surrounding area. Thoroughly make sure any loose debris is removed from under the housing.

5. Remove Faulty Thermostat

Pull out the broken thermostat. Inspect the thermostat cavity and again clean up any loose debris that may have fallen inside. There may be old sealing in place surrounding the hole. Carefully scrape or brush away any pieces. Do not let them fall inside the cavity.

6. Install New Thermostat

Once the area is clean, carefully put in the new thermostat. Inspect the thermostat and its housing to ensure no pieces have broken off or any rusting has occurred. Apply an applicable caulking or sealant to ensure the thermostat is not loose and has a secure fit.

7. Replace the Covering

Replace the covering back on top of the thermostat. Line up the bolt holes to ensure correct alignment. Take care in screwing back in the bolts as you do not want to damage the thermostat or its casing. Once the screws are in, jiggle the casing to make sure all is secure.

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