1995 Honda Accord boils over

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temp. I don't know why that is, but it's seen all the time. I rely pretty heavily on the shadetree test for head gasket trouble: with the engine cold, remove the radiator cap. Start the engine and pinch off the tube from the radiator neck to the reservoir. Place the palm of the other hand over the radiator neck for a few seconds. If you feel a steadily rising pressure or (worse) fluctuations as the engine turns, the head gasket is very likely bad. This test has some false negatives - the head gasket may not leak when cold idling - but I haven't seen a false positive. The most widely accepted test is a chemical test for combustion products in the coolant.
I often focus my attention in overheating cases based on the way the system behaves. Bad radiators usually show up as a slow buildup of heat that never wants to go away. Air flow or water flow problems show up at idle but the temperature drops rapidly when the car gets moving; water flow problems return to normal within seconds while air flow problems take a minute or two.
It really doesn't matter if the fans are running while driving; air flow should be fine then. I hate to say it, but I fear for your head gasket at this stage. Overheating while going down the road and cooling down when you pull over and idle make that a prime suspect.
Mike
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snipped-for-privacy@wt.net wrote in wrote:

bubbles in the coolant reduces it's heat carrying ability.
--
Jim Yanik
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Radiator my be irreversibly clogged and need to be replaced. I havd to do it once after about 150K miles.
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