97 Lumina Sedan Cooling Fan Problems

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I have had problems with the engine over heating. I recently had the coolant seals (they were leaking), thermostat, and water pump replaced. I also had the cooling system flushed. I finally figured out that my cooling fans do not come on unless the A/C is running, and that is probably the cause of all my problems. I have let the car sit in the driveway for 20-30 minutes with just the vent on and the cooling fans never come on. All this time the temp. guage keeps rising. As soon as I turn no the A/C the cooling fans come on and the temp. goes down to the normal operating range. I checked the coolent temp. sensor according to the service manual and I think it checks ok. Could it be a relay? Thanks for your help!!


posted by  topher98

could be a fuse or relay.

When the engine is not warm, and the a/c is turned on, only the secondary fan should come on (this leaves one not working untill the engine gets warm). If you have only one fan coming on at all, and it is the secondary fan- it is probably safe to assume that the primary fan is either dead or has a bad relay or fuse.

posted by  sierrawolfe929r

When I turn on the A/C both fans come on, engine cold or hot. But neither will come on if the A/C is not on.

posted by  topher98

Agreed...relay..or god forbid oncoming electrical probs. Dont know enuff about the car.

posted by  Blue_Frog

if you have the manual why don't you find the wiring diagram on the cooling fans. as for both fans coming on when you turn on the A/C my girfriend has a 98 Chevy Malibu and it does the same thing.

posted by  carlos

My son has the exact same problem with his 97 Lumina.We checked the fan motors and the sensor but they both checked out ok.
I was told that there is a coolant temperature switch on the motor next to the firewall but to get to it you have to tilt the motor forward. I plan on doing this but we have never worked on a motor that requires tilting so were gonna get a manual befor we do it.

If this works I'll let you know.

posted by  Mr.O

both fans should come on with the compressor running. i believe the drivers side fan is supposed to come on when the car hits 230 or so degrees. there are two 1" square relays on the passenger side fender (in the black box) that run each fan. try swapping those two to see if it fixes the problem. if it doesn't then it is probably the coolant temp sensor or temperature sender (which ever one controls your fan). there is a sensor (assuming it is a 3.1) on the front of the engine by the oil filter. they can be checked with an ohm meter (your local parts store will know how if you do not).

posted by  carls47807

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