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Discussion Starter #1
Do your temperature gauges ever rise above halfway? Today, being a significantly hotter day than usual (110 degrees), rose above the halfway mark and was stuttering. It never rose enough to where it warned me, and it only rose when I was stopping and going.

I know this could be a faulty fan or temp sensor, but I’m wondering if this is a normality when it is significantly hot as it was today.

I appreciate everyone’s help!
 

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2018 Challenger R/T Plus - Billet Clearcoat
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No, mine has got just a tick below the midpoint mark but never above....in those same temps. Today was 111, Saturday was 115.
 

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Do your temperature gauges ever rise above halfway? Today, being a significantly hotter day than usual (110 degrees), rose above the halfway mark and was stuttering. It never rose enough to where it warned me, and it only rose when I was stopping and going.

I know this could be a faulty fan or temp sensor, but I’m wondering if this is a normality when it is significantly hot as it was today.

I appreciate everyone’s help!
With my Hellcat I can view the coolant and oil temperature values digitally. There is an analog gauge display for both.

Since the digital display is so easy to read I seldom pay attention to the analog display.

But with oil temperature and coolant temperature I have observed under some operating conditions -- a lot of town driving in hot ambient temperature -- both temperatures get to the point the analog gauge needle will climb to the middle hash mark. If the ambient temperature is high enough of course I have the A/C on and this runs the radiator fan all the time. This tends to keep the coolant temperature lower than it would be otherwise, but if I drive long enough I have seen the coolant temperature climb to 217/218F. Nominally the radiator fan I think comes on at 216F but if it is already running -- because the A/C is on -- it might switch to higher speed operation. At any rate, I do not recall with the A/C on the coolant temperature getting any hotter. A few times, with the A/C off, I have seen the coolant temperature go some higher, but I don't recall how much higher.

The needle can "stutter" or flicker between two positions as the temperature is alternating between two values. (The old style analog gauges were designed to hide this dynamic behavior. As an aside, you ought to see undampened oil pressure).

Absent any warning light or message on the dash, I would offer my opinion your car did not experience any temperature that suggests a faulty fan or temperature sensor or any other problem.

Years ago, in another car in 116F ambient temperature, I observed that the intake air temperature was 135F. The coolant temperature climbed to 226F (but did not go higher). The analog gauge needle had swung to the right and was in a region of the gauge it had never been in before.

I had never driven in this high of ambient temperature before.

But the engine manifested no signs of overheating. Back home, I spoke to the service manager at the dealer. I gave him my "data". He didn't know the answer to my question- did the engine experience an overheating event- but passed the data and my question on to the factory. The response was, para-phrasing, no warning light solid or flashing tied to either coolant over temperature or coolant level low or oil pressure -no problem.
 

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My interpretation is it was the term used to describe the "flickering" of the analog portion gauge needle or reading indicator between two adjacent temperatures. Because these analog gauges are not dampened to smooth out readings, as the temperature climbs -- but I have seen this behavior as temperature falls -- the needle can jump back and forth as the temperature say slowly -- relatively speaking -- rises from 203F to 204F. The temperature reading and temperature position indicator will change as the temperature jumps from say 203F to 204F but then a moment, half a moment later, it will jump back down to 203F. This back and forth can happen several times in rapid succession until the temperature reading from the sensor is steady and solid at a specific temperature.

I notice this behavior most often with temperatures since I pay particular attention to oil and coolant temperature. But often my attention is on battery voltage and I have observed the flickering between say 14.0V and 14.1V. Unlike with temperature this can continue for a longer period of time if the car's electrical needs are stable and just happen to fall on that teeter totter threshold between 14V and 14.1V.

Oh, I forgot to mention I don't this behavior brings into question the accuracy of the sensor.

The sensor sends a voltage level. This is converted from analog to digital. It is not uncommon for the volage level to vary enough the digital value can be 1234 (just a number) one sample interval and 1235 the next. When this digital value is converted to a humanistic value the 1234 might result in a 203F temperature albeit just barely still 203F, while the 1235 value might be enough to push the temperature into the 204F range, but just barely.

Temperature guns bring with them their own variability. Surface finish, dirt/grime can affect the reading.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I also have the digital gauges. This morning after a 30 minute drive the temperature stayed around 204 driving in town, and 199 on the highway. My coolant is also a little low. I’m going to drive a bit longer this afternoon to see if the issue continues. When I stated it was “flickering” I meant the analog stick was going up and down really fast (as one of you stated, probably going between two temperatures quickly.)
 

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I also have the digital gauges. This morning after a 30 minute drive the temperature stayed around 204 driving in town, and 199 on the highway. My coolant is also a little low. I’m going to drive a bit longer this afternoon to see if the issue continues. When I stated it was “flickering” I meant the analog stick was going up and down really fast (as one of you stated, probably going between two temperatures quickly.)
204F in town is about right with the A/C on. With the A/C off my Hellcat coolant gets hotter. Up to 216F at which point the radiator fan comes on. And 199F on the highway is about right.

When I hear, err read, "coolant is also a little low" that sets off alarms. I'm thinking a leak. Could be anything from a cap that won't hold pressure -- it bleeds off water vapor -- to a coolant tank that is split or a water pump seal leaking or a radiator leaking, all of which cars in the have manifested. There are other leak sources, really anything that is part of the cooling system.

A leak is not responsible for the flickering. I observed this just earlier today with the battery voltage display. The voltage was flickering between 13.9V and 14.0V. I even watched this as I accelerated away from a stop light and it continued.

The only sign of possible trouble in my opinion is the low coolant level.
 

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I’m typically at the quarter mark. 185 deg. for coolant and oil but also have a 160 deg. t’stat. Was around 95 outside the other day and didn’t waver.
 

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the programming on the "analog" temperature gauge will not flow much fluctuation - the coolant will range from 199* - 212* F depending on ambient temperatures and when in steady state cruise or sitting in traffic.

It was probably intentional do prevent owners from thinking there was an overheat situation as the extreme upper end is ~ 240* F on the gauge.

Looking at the scaling of the gauge, the "normal" midpoint is around the OEM 203* F t-stat. So running up to 212* you'd anticipate the gauge reading between the midpoint and the 3/4 mark - but that would probably freak people out.

In warmer weather, with the A/C running, the cooling fans will cycle during the "on" cycle for the A/C compressor as the system needs air moving the external condenser to function.

My mom had an '83 Pontiac 6000 STE - this was FWD, transvere V6 - and these ran 195* t-stats.
Sitting in traffic, the gauge would rise, cooling fans would cycle and it would come down - but she would get all worked up about it.
Everybody assured her it was normal range - she had that car for 16 years, until it was simply worn out. Cooling system worked just fine in that car.

The temperate guage was 100 - 210 - 260 graduations with 210 being the mid-point.

By contrast, the '77 Buick Electra she had prior - didn't have any gauges other than a large speed, large fuel gauge and an equally large clock on the passenger side. Just warning lights for anything else. At one point in that car's history the cooling system got hot enough that it boiled the reservoir - I don't recall if the idiot light for coolant illuminated or not...
 

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I’m typically at the quarter mark. 185 deg. for coolant and oil but also have a 160 deg. t’stat. Was around 95 outside the other day and didn’t waver.
A "true" analog coolant temperature gauge is really only for show. With another car in order to know more than if the engine was cold, warm or up to temperature I used a hand held OBD2 code reader to view OBD2 coolant temperature in real time. I then was able to come up with some kind of "formula" to know what the temperature was more precisely than cold, warm or hot. But not that much more precisely. A very crude instrument to say the least.

The analog gauge set off to the left on the center display panel of my Hellcat is similar. I really pay it no mind. If I want to know the coolant temperature I use the steeering wheel buttons to "scroll" to the digital temperature display or I have Performance Pages loaded and running and can view it on the large LCD.

Most of the time I watch the oil temperature gauge. This tells me if the engine is really up to temperature. Oil temperature lags coolant temperature when coming up to temperature.
 

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I run Performance Pages 99% of the time and have the Coolant Temp / Oil Temp / Oil PSI display
- I consider those the most vital things to have displayed. Anything out of the ordinary and I'd shut it down and investigate.

If I had my way the uConnect screen would default to this every time it was started up.

In the center cluster, I run the IAT, but if I needed to use Nav the whole time, I'd switch the center display to Oil PSI
 
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You guys are gonna stroke out from constant worry... ;)
 

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If it gets hot, a light will come on to tell you. Dodge doesn't worry about it, and they own the engine for a long time, I'm not worried about it. But mine is typically 19x to 20x. Never saw it over maybe 207?
 

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FWIW - here are the stock fan setting. BTW if you are experiencing stumble it could be a combination of running minimum octane and high temps.

5.7
998267



6.2
998269


6.4
998270
 

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You guys are gonna stroke out from constant worry... ;)
What, me worry?

Really while i have the oil temperature or sometimes the coolant temperature showing I'm not worried something will go wrong. I only occasionally have the oil pressure displayed. It is more a matter of curiosity as to how hot idle oil pressure varies with temperature. But my base line temperature is 212F.

In viewing the oil temperature I just like to know the engine is up to temperature.

At other times it is nice to observe the various telemetry to get a feel for what they all look like when things are working right.

And it is kind of cool. This is the first car I've owned that displays considerable telemetry. My 2018 MINI JCW you would have thought would be loaded with gauges but all it had some some lame engine coolant temperature graphic. No actual temperature value. No oil pressure. No oil temperature. No boost pressure. Nothing.
 

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High ambient temps can strain a car's cooling system (auto trans don't like high oil temps), in fact there was a recent report about cars (wish they stated the make, model and year) failing due to excessive temps in death valley.
DV and other locations can really be a real challenge for a car's cooling system. DV isn't the only hot spot. Often at least in CA Needles is the "winner" or Palm Springs sometimes. I noticed Blythe had the highest temperature the other day. But of course when it gets hot in DV it gets plenty hot.

I'll this opportunity to stress it certainly is a good idea before venturing out even on a less hot day than a DV heat wave ensuring the cooling system is in tip top shape. A cooling system that can "get by" with short trips that don't have the coolant all that hot can fail big time when faced with having to deal with high ambient temperature.
 
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