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Temp Gauge flashing

My 2008 Toyota Yaris’ temperature gauge flashes, then may stay on. If I turn on the compartment heater (not to hottest setting),the temperature gauge will go off. I took it to a garage. They checked it out and said there were no codes for any problems on the computer. They gave it back to me to drive around expecting it to overheat to a point that steam would be spewing out and the engine would shut down. I don’t want it to get to ghst point.

High coolant temps don’t usually throw a code…check your coolant both in the radiator (when it’s cold) and in the overflow and make sure it’s full…if it’s not full, the temperature sensor might not be submerged and it won’t read correctly. I think you need to find a new shop to work on your Yaris…you don’t want to continuously overheat the engine…


When turning on the heater results in the temp gauge returning to normal, that usually indicates a cooling system problem. The heater is taking the place of the radiator in that case, in fact the heater is a sort of mini-radiator if you think about it.

  • Make sure the coolant level is correct, both in the overflow bottle and the radiator.
  • Make sure the radiator fan is turning on. It should be spinning like crazy when the coolant gauge indicates overheating.
  • Are you getting good heat from the heater?
  • Do you hear any sort of gurgling sounds under the dash?
  • Is the upper radiator hose very hot to the touch when the overheating is indicated?
  • If all else fails suggest to drain and refill the coolant, replace the thermostat, and do the recommended air bleed procedure, see what effect that has.

In the meantime keep using the heater method to prevent overheating. If that doesn’t work at some point, turn the engine off and tow the car to a shop. May have a head gasket problem.

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That’s what I hope is not the problem (head gasket) altho it gas 237,000 miles on it. It is in the shop now. Thank uou all for your comments