Overheating Toyota in Oakland

I recently bought a used '96 Toyota. Shortly after the 30-day warranty was out, it boiled over following a short trip. I see now that the radiator fans are not working, even if I turn on the A/C.

How far can I drive it? What can I do myself? (I changed an alternator once when someone talked me through it, but I’m on my own now.) How much should I anticipate having to spend in repairs?

I’m new to this area, and don’t know where to start looking for a mechanic (bad interaction at Toyota Oakland).

See if you can find a recommended mechanic here:

You should not drive this car until you get the fan assembly replaced. In southern California where you’re located you need your cooling fans. The fan assembly should run a few hundred bucks. Replacement in this vehicle is not difficult, and the cost will probably be around one hour’s shop time, I’ll gusee $150. Since it boiled over, the shop should check out the cooling system too and at least replace the coolant. Even though the boilover may have been due to the bad fan(s) you now need to have fresh coolant put in to the proper ratio.

Could be just a bad fan relay which simply unplugs and you plug a new one in.

Oakland is in Northern California. :slight_smile:

Call Fifth Street Garage in Oakland (recommended on this site and by friends of mine) or Royal Auto in Alameda (I have used them multiple times myself.)

Hopefully there is an owner’s manual in the glove compartment.

Check the fuse chart and see if the fuse for the cooling fans is blown. If so, replace it with a fuse of the same amperage (the number on the fuse).

Make sure the wires to the fan motors are connected. Check this when the engine is cold.

A faulty fan relay could also prevent the fans from working.

Since they don’t work even when the AC is on I doubt the coolant temperature sensor is the problem.

How far can you drive it? Without working cooling fans I wouldn’t drive it at all. If it overheats there could be serious damage.