If the thermostat is broken in the closed position the engine would overheat rapidly. If it was broken in the open position the engine cooling system would not reach normal operating temperature and the heater would produce only warm air.
Take the thermostat out and put it in a pan of water on the stove. When the water gets to around 200 deg F, the thermostat should open. If it doesn't it needs replaced. Observe carefully that you have not installed the thermostat upsidedown. Spring-side to the engine
Comment: if you have it out, don't bother with the testing except for curiosity - just replace it for the extra $10 or less.NEVER EVER REMOVE a radiator cap from a
What to look for:
CAUTION If the radiator is filled to the top with coolant and the engine is run without the radiator cap in place, the coolant will expand and spill over as the engine warms up. Be ready to put the radiator cap back on.
* Compare the size of the thermostat to the old one - make sure the new one matches up
* Ensure the thermostat fits into the groove in the block or outlet housing.
* The spring side faces the block - If the thermostat is installed backwards, the engine will overheat
NOTE - When a paper gasket is used and the recess is in the thermostat housing, it is a good practice to position the thermostat into the recess and glue the gasket to hold it in place. If it falls out of its groove during installation, the outlet housing can be cracked or a coolant leak will result. Before tightening the water outlet housing, try to rock it back and forth to be sure it is flush. Housings are often cracked during this step.
Follow the top radiator hose back to the engine. There is where the t-stat housing is.
I had to take the air cleaner tube\hose off to give me more room.
Your radiator has two big hoses, one on the top and one on the bottom. The upper radiator hose connects to the thermostat housing. On my 1996 Windstar it's a pain to replace it because there are many components in the way.Tips
For anyone working on a car's cooling system, you MUST check out the MUST-HAVE tool for dealing with those spring-type hose clamps!!
This tool has a pinching device on the end to securely grab the 'ears' on the hose clamp - squeeze the handle to open the clamp, and then automatically lock it open.
The next awesome feature of this tool: the clamping action is on the end of a cable - you work it down to the clamp buried down underneath, or directly next to some part of the engine - minimal clearance required.
Sears makes one - check it out at a local store and linked below.
I don't know if this will help, but I am currently replacing the thermostat on my 2000 Windstar, and it is located where the upper radiator hose connects to the engine block.
You have to remove the two screws that hold the housing, and there it is.
I have found this to be true with a number of vehicles I have worked on.
Top right side of the engine.
Follow the larger sized radiator hose to it.
It is at the lower end of the top radiator hose within the water outlet on the engine.
Just below the throttle body where the Rad hose enters the block
Follow the upper radiator hose to the engine. The hose will be connected to the thermostat housing cover. It is very difficult to see due to the location. If you want to get a good look at it, remove the air induction hose in-between the throttle body and the air clean housing.What needs to be removed to get at the thermostat
Other than the upper radiator hose and the 2 mountings screws, nothing else is needed to be removed to install a thermostat on a 1999-2003 Ford Windstar.
Never remove the radiator cap when the engine is HOT. Serious personal injury can result.
Follow the upper radiator hose to the engine and that housing there contains the thermostat. It is kind of hard to get to but it depends on you.
Be sure to put the spring on the new thermostat TOWARDS the engine.
3 tools should be needed for this job..screwdriver (flat head), 8mm deepwell socket w/extensoin and maybe some pliers to rotate the radiator hose clamp away from 1 of the 2 bolts required to remove the t-stat housing.
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