93 Saturn SC2, Overheating issues...HELP???

Hey, I have just purchased a 93 Saturn SC2 DOHC. I only paid 700 so I expected some glitches, but the previous owner didn't mention anything about it overheating. I took it to a MIDAS and they tested it and put about 350
dollars in it to stop it from overheating and it is still doing it. Here is what I know:
Midas replaced the thermostat and bypassed the sensor that kicks the fan on, because it didn't seem to be working, they installed a switch that leaves the fan on constantly while the car is on. They pressure tested the entire system and there are no leaks. Fluid is pumping through it fine, so the water pump appears to be fine.
If I start it up and let it sit, it goes to about the half way mark on the heat gauge and stays there and does not overheat. But once I start to drive it, it creeps above half way mark untill I stop at a stop sign or traffic light and then the heat gauge creeps up to the 3/4 mark and higher, that is when the overfill tank starts to overfill and sprays the engine with coolant and I start to get steam/smoke from the coolant on the engine.
So far it hasn't hit the actual red indicator on the gauge but it gets close enough and the overfill tank starts releasing coolant. The coolant indicator light just started comming on last night, but I think it is because I am low on coolant from it comming out of the overfill tank.
Midas thinks it is an electrical problem, but since they bypassed the fan, what other electrical components are involved with the coolant system. I have had vehicles in the past overheat and have had head gaskets blown because of it. So I don't want to take any chances, but I am also not convinced it is an electrical problem, although to be honest I do not know what all electrical components are involved.
PLEASE HELP and provide any suggestions or tips you can think of. This is the only transportation I have to get to work and need it to last at least a few months till tax return.
I thank you in advance for any suggestions or advice you can give,
Tim
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Most of the big chains are high priced and mediocre as far as real repairs go. Mufflers, yes, anything else, find a competant garage.

The Midas cash register. They want to touch more of your gold.

Neither am I. If the T'stat is working and the water pump is pumping, you have to wonder about water flow and heat transfer.
How was the pump tested? Under a higher load, a radiator hose may be collapsing and causing a restriction. There may be gunk in the engine block that is restricting some passages.
Skip Midas and find a good local guy. When you do, stick with him.
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First mistake - taking the car to Midas. They should stick to mufflers. The evidence is in their fix - installing a switch instead of fixing the problem.

Is the radiator clean? By that I mean is it clean between all of the cooling fins? Does it have the right radiator cap on it?

Let's see - the coolant is circulating and the fan is running full time. Yup - must be an electrical problem. Sorry - don't mean to give you a hard time, but get yourself a real mechanic and not the guys at Midas.
--

-Mike-
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You may have a minor flaw in the head gasket which doesn't show up until (1) the engine is warmed up and (2) there is enough pressure in the exhaust stream (ie: engine operating under load and not just sitting idle) to cause some leakage of exhaust gasses into the coolant jacket. This would drive the pressure in the coolant system way up, resulting in spill-over from the coolant tank, and significant loss of coolant efficiency - your overheating problem.
Good Luck
B.
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talldredge wrote:

Perhaps there is air in the system. I have a 1990 Beretta GT with a metal hose coming off the top of the water pump and that hose has a tiny bleeder screw on the top. I didn't know better, so I fixed where that hose's gasket failed and drove the car--which promptly overheated. I had let out the coolant in the pump to drain some gasket material that fell into the pump when I removed the hose, and didn't know I needed to bleed the thing afterwards.
It's probably not correct, but I don't understand many other ways that you could have this overheat thing going on. I can only think of a few other things that may have something to do with it:
* Clogging or similar fluid restriction that causes the fluid to not flow through well enough at higher than idle speeds * Opening in the system somewhere (radiator cap, hose, heater core, heater hoses, throttle body cooling hoses, gaskets, etc. not holding the pressure) * Thermostat wasn't actually replaced (Jiffy Lube got busted for not doing $99 transmission service jobs, for example) * Thermostat is defective * Thermostat wasn't installed properly when it was replaced * Coolant temperature sensor defective * Miscellaneous electrical problem
On a car that's 13 years old like that, I'd replace all the hoses and easy-to-reach gaskets ANYWAY, especially if I wasn't sure what the last guy did to it.
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