How to Change the Thermostat on a Hyundai Accent

by Thomas WestUpdated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • Drain pan

  • Pliers

  • Philips screwdriver

  • Metric socket set

  • Ratchet wrench

  • Flat blade screwdriver

  • Gasket scraper

  • Thermostat gasket

  • Replacement thermostat

  • Funnel

Hyundai is a South Korean automaker that has been shipping cars to North American since the mid 1980s. Hyundai begin assembling Ford cars under license in the late 1960s. Hyundai began making their own car, the Pony, in 1976. The Accent was introduced in 1995 and replaced the Excel, which had been around since 1985. The thermostat in your Accent is part of the cooling system. When you engine is cold, the thermostat stays closed so that the engine will warm up faster. When the engine warms up to operating temperature, the thermostat opens up and the coolant circulates though the radiator to keep the engine from overheating.

Open the hood of your Accent and allow the engine to cool.

Place a clean drain pan underneath the radiator. Turn the radiator drain valve in a counterclockwise direction with a pair of pliers. Allow the coolant to drain completely from the radiator into the pan. Close the drain valve in a clockwise direction and tighten with pliers. Do not over-tighten the valve as the plastic radiator tank can be damaged.

Locate the upper radiator hose and trace it from the top of the radiator to the thermostat housing on the engine block. Loosen the hose clamp on the upper radiator hose at the thermostat with a Philips screwdriver. Pull the hose from the thermostat using a twisting motion to release it from the housing if necessary.

Remove the two thermostat housing retaining bolts with a socket and ratchet wrench turned in a counterclockwise direction. Place the bolts aside. Pry the housing up carefully with a flat blade screwdriver. Now pry the thermostat out of the housing, paying attention to whether the cone is facing upwards or downwards.

Clean the thermostat mounting surface, as well as the thermostat housing, of old gasket residue with a gasket scraper. Place a new thermostat gasket over the mounting surface on the engine block. Place a new thermostat into the block in the same orientation as the old thermostat. Place the thermostat housing back over thermostat and tighten the retaining bolts with a socket and ratchet.

Open the radiator cap and place a funnel in the opening. Slowly pour the coolant from the drain pan into the radiator. Remove the funnel and replace the radiator cap. Close the hood.

Check the coolant after the car has been driven once and allowed to cool down. Add Coolant to bring the level up to the full mark, if necessary.


A malfunctioning thermostat may cause your Accent to overheat if the thermostat sticks in the closed position, possibly damaging your engine.

Never work on a hot engine as you could be scalded by coolant and receive serious burns.

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