164 Thermostat in the USA - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 01:11 PM Thread Starter
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164 Thermostat in the USA

I have a manual 92 12v and I was going to change the thermostat because it was stuck open, but when I got the thermostat housing off it wasn't like any other thermostat i had ever seen. When I went to all the major part stores they had the wrong one. The only place i could find the one that's retained in the housing is on centerline, and you have to by both the thermostat and the housing for $82. Does anyone know where to buy just the thermostat for cheaper?

1992 164s Portland Oregon, Ryan Wesel
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 01:14 PM
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No one will have it (parts stores). I have them in stock, either the complete unit or just the insert. Ciao!
https://alfissimo.com/home/1103-ther...nsert-164.html


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 01:47 PM Thread Starter
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$52 for a thermostat? Why is that, I bought a new old stock slave cylinder for $30, Whats so special about these thermostats?

1992 164s Portland Oregon, Ryan Wesel
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 04:02 PM
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$52 is a very good price for a 164 thermostat. They have been expensive for forever on these cars. To be far, a thermostat for my XC70 costs well over 100$ since it also can only be bought in a housing with sensors included. Some cars are just not common or have special setups that are unlike other cars, so the price is increased due to lack of commonality with other makes and models. An Italian sedan and a Busso V6 is not common, hence the price. It's just something you have to accept with certain cars. It should also soon become obvious to you that going to a local auto parts store for 164 parts is going to be a waste of time for even simple things like brake pads. The only thing you might expect to be able to find is spark plugs and a dizzy cap, oil and oil filters and wiper blades or light bulbs. Other than that, literally... not likely to be a fruitful trip. Most parts people will say, "Alfa Romeo", who makes that?
Charles

-'91 164L 5 speed (sold sadly) -'04 Volvo XC70 -'97 Mazda Miata -'04 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer V8 -'07 Honda Odyssey EX-L
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 04:46 PM Thread Starter
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ChazzyD, you'd be surprised, i've got many things from Napa and auto zone, the only things that i've needed to buy online were the fuel pump and the slave cylinder. Even the manager of my local auto zone had a 164. I know what you mean and i accepted that when I bought it but I've actually been surprised by how much I could get.

1992 164s Portland Oregon, Ryan Wesel
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 06:30 PM
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What's so special about these thermostats?
... when I got the thermostat housing off it wasn't like any other thermostat i had ever seen.

You are right and answered your own question. They typically last about 60,000 miles or less too.

Mark
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 07:17 PM
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Your lucky if you still have a NAPA in your area. A quality auto parts store, most are gone from around here. Our choices are pretty much only, Pep Boys, Auto Zone and O'Reilly's. None of which are particularly special. I don't even buy oil or filters from those places.
Charles

-'91 164L 5 speed (sold sadly) -'04 Volvo XC70 -'97 Mazda Miata -'04 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer V8 -'07 Honda Odyssey EX-L
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 03:28 AM
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$52 for a thermostat? Why is that, I bought a new old stock slave cylinder for $30, Whats so special about these thermostats?
Nothing is special about them and I think the price is pretty fair. I don't inflate prices, this is just what they cost to you. They are not super special but they are specific to the car with proper temp and fitting. You may be able to find something to fit but it could also end up causing more issues that it's worth. I guess looking at other thermostats these days, this is dirt cheap!


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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 07:58 AM
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Wax pellet type thermostats are more expensive than the cheapest type which uses differential thermal expansion of different metals, like a cheapo bimetallic strip house thermostat from a physics perspective. Wax pellet are much more accurate especially when partially open, better for engine protection in very cold climates. Wax pellet type cost more to make.

And Alfa specifies the more sophisticated double acting type, again more effective and more expensive to make.

The operating range of the thermostat is 20 degrees C plus or minus 2 C and the double action protects the heads against rapid changes of thermal load, sudden and sporadic cooling. Cheap thermostats are like cheap rip cords on your parachute, except you know you need your thermostat to operate all the time, parachutes just once.....
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Last edited by Michael Smith; 01-19-2019 at 08:09 AM.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 09:13 AM
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I've been very lucky in that I haven't had to replace any thermostats in my Alfas so far, the one in the 91S going past 191k miles so far, the others are at about 110k miles. I do however loosen and retighten the three long bolts every other year or so, just to make sure they are removable.
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Del

Seattle

1989 Milano, Shankle Sport
1991 164S, stock
1994 164LS (~Q)
1972 Morgan 27

previously owned since 1964:

62 Morris MiniMinor 850, 67 Austin 1275 Cooper S (Downton 3/4 race), 64 Giulia Sprint GT (1st red one made), 72 Fiat 128 Sedan, 75 Alfetta Sedan, 78 Alfetta Sedan, 78 GTV, 81 GTV6, 86 GTV6
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Del View Post
I've been very lucky in that I haven't had to replace any thermostats in my Alfas so far, the one in the 91S going past 191k miles so far, the others are at about 110k miles. I do however loosen and retighten the three long bolts every other year or so, just to make sure they are removable.
In my experience regular coolant flushes keep thermostats happy. If you don't they eventually gum up and get stuck.

Checking those bolts is a very good idea.
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-RL; 1991 Alfa Romeo 164S, 2014 Mercedes Benz E350 4Matic, 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS, 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, 1995 Volkswagen Golf (Race Car)
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 11:11 AM
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In my experience regular coolant flushes keep thermostats happy. If you don't they eventually gum up and get stuck.

Checking those bolts is a very good idea.
Failed thermostats often show clean metal scrape marks on the wax pellet chamber which I take to be evidence of binding. Keeping the cooling system in good order does protect the thermostat by preventing overheating of the pellet chamber. Regular green glycol needs flushing and replacing every two to three years, as does the also often forgotten brake fluid. I have the blue/green version of long life coolant in at the moment which lasts more than five years before flushing is needed. The red and the orange coolants are good for ten years.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 02:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Del View Post
I've been very lucky in that I haven't had to replace any thermostats in my Alfas so far, the one in the 91S going past 191k miles so far, the others are at about 110k miles. I do however loosen and retighten the three long bolts every other year or so, just to make sure they are removable.
I have never had to replace one in 22 years. So the $52 insert or $89 complete unit seems like a deal to me. Frequent coolant changes is a MUST! Every 2 years. 50/50 with distilled water. Use the green stuff or I use Fricofin from Fuchs.


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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 04:58 PM
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Isn't the water used in the premixed solutions for sale already distilled, uncontaminated, or neutral ph water? I thought I read somewhere that it was, but I could be wrong. Prestone's web site says their 50/50 premix uses demineralized water, and I might suspect that most major brand use that as well.

Got your email about the pending move. Hope to see you when we next visit San Diego.

Del

Seattle

1989 Milano, Shankle Sport
1991 164S, stock
1994 164LS (~Q)
1972 Morgan 27

previously owned since 1964:

62 Morris MiniMinor 850, 67 Austin 1275 Cooper S (Downton 3/4 race), 64 Giulia Sprint GT (1st red one made), 72 Fiat 128 Sedan, 75 Alfetta Sedan, 78 Alfetta Sedan, 78 GTV, 81 GTV6, 86 GTV6
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 01-19-2019, 05:17 PM
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Isn't the water used in the premixed solutions for sale already distilled, uncontaminated, or neutral ph water? I thought I read somewhere that it was, but I could be wrong. Prestone's web site says their 50/50 premix uses demineralized water, and I might suspect that most major brand use that as well.

Got your email about the pending move. Hope to see you when we next visit San Diego.
Ph 7 water (distilled) is an aggressive solvent quickly forming acid or alkali solutions from whatever it is in contact with. Combined with anti freeze and, more importantly, the additives in anti freeze designed to prevent mixed coolant from becoming acidic distilled water is a good thing to use.

However, for topping up your cooling system or if running pure water for some reason tap water is fine as long as the natural Ph is more than 7.

If refilling the entire cooling system then distilled water or a proper premix is advisable. For small amounts tap water is fine especially if added to anti freeze before adding to the cooling system. In freezing weather never put just water into the European pressurized systems, it can freeze before the water mixes with existing coolant. A better practice is to top up with pure antifreeze since proportions up to 60/40 antifreeze to water provide higher frost protection and more heat capacity than the water would alone.

1991 Alfa Romeo 164L 5 spd
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