1996 Rodeo overheating

Hi,
My 1996 Rodeo 3.2L v6 overheats when stopped in traffic or idling. However when I start moving again and pick up some speed, it cools off. The fan clutch seems to be ok (ie) it does not spin freely when
I give it a push when the engine is off. There is resistance and it does not spin more than 1/2 a turn. Turning the heater full blast when it overheats seems to help a bit but not by much. Any idea what the problem might be? Is there a way I can tell if the water pump and thermostat are ok? I want to see if I can fix it myself without having
to take it to a dealer. Any ideas or suggestions are appreciated.
Thanks.
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is the electric assist fan coming on? here in texas, on my 96, mine is on a heck of a lot. i would think that if it is normal temp on the highway, the thermostat is ok. have you checked the coolant level? perhaps you should flush the system.
beeker01 wrote:

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I don't hear the electric assist fan coming on. Is this a second fan separate from the one behind the radiator? As far as I know, there's only one main fan. The coolant level is ok. What does flushing the coolant system do?
Thanks.
Kaz wrote:

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The radiator on my '98 was severly plugged - the previous owner must have used straight tap water. Tubes in the core were so small just a small amount of contaminant would block them. You can let it idle enough to get hot, then place your hand near the radiator (be careful not to touch it as it may get very hot) and see if the temperurature is even across the entire width of the radiator at any given distance from the top. If it's cool in an area it probably means the rad is plugged. You can also drain the system, disconnect the upper and lowe hoses and see how fast water moves through it from the cap hole. It should keep up with a standard garden hose with out coming out the top connector. Or, remove the radiator, place it horizontal, fill it about 1/2 to 3/4 with water and tilt it back and foth and see how fast the water gets from the top of rad to bottom and back. Try it with the rad tilted so water would only flow through one side of the rad at a time. If it is plugged, a radioator shop may be able to rod (clean) it for about an hours worth of time. If it's as bad as mine was you will need a new core or an all new radiator.
FYI, if it has plastic end caps (the top and bottom of the radiator that is crimped to the aluminum core) and there is any discolloration, especially a lightening of the color, around the top hose connection then the plastic has gotten too hot and is starting to deteriorate and you should probably get a new radiator.

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I was having the same overheating symptoms with my 95.5.
Replaced Radiator, Thermostat, and hoses today and problem solved.
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Sounds like classic symptoms of a clogged radiator. Take it to a radiator shop to see if it can be "rodded", if not R&R radiator.

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