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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The past couple of nights it has been in the low single-digit temps, and I have had a couple of strange things happen with my bird. First, when I would start it, both the "low washer fluid" and "low coolant" lights would blink for a good minute. After about a minute, they would both go off. I have had them come on and stay on before, but never blink, and never at the same time. The second thing is that whenever I get on the brakes and then on the gas, my parking brake light comes on for a split second. This happens regardless of speed, just whenever I get on the brakes for more than about 5 seconds or so. Both of these things happen only when it is really really cold out (the night before last and tonight were 2*F and 1*F respectively, but last night it was around 10*F and it didn't do it). Should I be concerned with these things?


P.S. I have read up on signs of head gasket failure, and I know one of them is a severely fluctuating temp gauge. My temp gauge noticeably will cycle back and forth a bit, but only just noticeably, not way back and forth like is described in a head gasket failure. This only happens in cold weather, though it doesn't necessarily have to be as cold as it has to be for my previously described problems to occur. Should I be concerned about this fluctuation, or is a little bit of fluctuation normal? This should teach me to pay attention to my temp gauge no matter what the outside temp lol.
 

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look on top of the manifold for the fan temp sensor. NOT the sensor on teh vent plug tree. should be down by teh throttle body. replace it. seriously. mine was fluctuating. the temp sensor is causing the fan to kick on and off. causing it to move around. it will save you a hell of a lot of trouble. (and an obliterated headgasket) most i can say about the low coolant light is that your mixture may be off. get an antifreeze tester and check to see if your mixture is good enough for the temps. could say teh same about teh washer fluid. last year on my grandma's van, the washer fluid froze and split teh reservoir down the center.
 

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bcook_84 said:
The past couple of nights it has been in the low single-digit temps, and I have had a couple of strange things happen with my bird. First, when I would start it, both the "low washer fluid" and "low coolant" lights would blink for a good minute. After about a minute, they would both go off. I have had them come on and stay on before, but never blink, and never at the same time.
I've had the same problem with the washer fluid. Definitely affected by the cold weather. Just double check the fluid levels.

Joe
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Thank you sinhumane and Rodeo for the replies. My antifreeze mixture is at a perfect 50/50, since I bought it pre-mixed, and I am using winter-specific washer fluid.

Since it was again in the single-digit temps tonight, I did some testing on the parking brake light occurrence, and found that it does not blink on when accelerating from a complete stop, only when using the brakes to slow down and then hitting the gas.

Edit: did some searching on the parking brake light problem, could be the brake fluid level not registering correctly in the cold temps....will check it out
 

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not a problem.. thats what the forum was for. cold weather can play its tricks on you and your car... i had the CEL come on the other day when it was in teh single digits, and hasn't been on since.
 

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It's not cold till you start having to think about running more antifreeze than water :)

Weather underground says their nearest station to me was at 32.8 below on Wednesday morning. Now THAT'S cold.
 

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My low coolant light did the same thing the last couple of mornings. It's not really blinking, but I think it is right on the boundryline of coming on. I looked at the level and it IS at the lower limit line. In cold weather, liquid contracts and I think that's what caused a slightly lower level on those -0 mornings.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks again for the replies everyone. All the issues have been taken care of with the exception of the fluctuating temperature gauge. Sinhumane, do you have a pic of where that sensor is located? Just curious, it would make finding it a lot easier.
 

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I'm obviously a bit late to this thread but I was wondering what you did to take care of the low coolant and low washer lights blinking at start up. My 1997 Cougar 3.8 does the same thing when temps start nearing the zero mark.
 

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Double checked the fluids - all were at the proper level (I actually overfilled the coolant tank a bit). Lights flashed simultainiously again this morning for a few seconds upon start up. I did some more digging online. There is a TSB on this problem (# BC3285970206) but I cannot find the remedy anywhere online. I'll keep digging.
 

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Digging this up from the dead. Has anyone figured out why the washer fluid and coolant light come on and flash?
I dont think it has anything to do with the fluids, as they both come on properly and one at a time when either fluid is low.
I am not too concerned about it, just curious as to what it is trying to tell me.
 

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A-hem ahem (clearing my throat!)

Clicky, clicky!

There is an ongoing thread about this just a few spots down! :facepalm:

Joe
 
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