How to Replace a 1998 Chevy Cavalier Thermostatby Gregory Crews
The 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier uses a thermostat to regulate the coolant system. The engine temperature in the Cavalier will rise during operation of the engine. The thermostat opens to release coolant into the engine to lower its temperature. Once the temperature is lowered, the thermostat closes until the next time the engine gets hot. A faulty thermostat will stick and not release coolant into the engine properly. If this happens, the car can overheat, damaging the engine.
Access the engine compartment by opening the hood. Follow the upper radiator hose to the thermostat housing.
Unscrew the two 8 mm bolts on the housing. This will separate the housing, revealing the thermostat.
Clean the two surfaces with a razor scraper. Ensure all the gasket material is cleaned off.
Replace the old thermostat with the new one. Ensure the new thermostat is inserted the same way as the old one.
Place the gasket around the surface of the bottom half of the housing. Ensure the bolt holes match up to the holes on the gasket.
Bolt the thermostat housing together with the socket wrench. Ensure the bolts are tight to prevent leakage in the future.
Twist the radiator cap to access the coolant level in the radiator. Fill with coolant until the radiator is full.
Start the car and allow it to idle until it warms up. The coolant level in the radiator will drop once the thermostat opens. Continue filling the radiator with coolant. Once the radiator is full, twist the cap on the radiator closed.
Close the hood. Turn the car off.
- The thermostat and gasket are sold as a kit at the local automotive-parts store.
- Allow the engine to cool down before servicing the coolant system.
Items you will need
- Socket set
- Socket wrench
- 1 gallon of pre-mixed antifreeze
- temperature indicator image by Aleksandr Ugorenkov from Fotolia.com