How much does it cost to replace a car thermostat?

According to Fixter research, a car thermostat replacement cost (UK) ranges between £107 and £198.

The average car thermostat replacement cost works out at £152, including parts and labour.

Can I carry out a thermostat replacement myself?

Your thermostat is a crucial part of your car’s cooling system. It operates the valve that delivers the precise amount of coolant required by your engine. To maintain your car’s optimum performance, it needs to work at a constant and specific engine temperature. By adding coolant to the radiator when it’s too hot or closing it when it isn’t quite hot enough, your thermostat is responsible for your car engine’s perfect operating temperature.

Despite being a relatively simple repair, given the importance of its operation, we’d always recommend that an experienced and qualified mechanic carry out your thermostat replacement. If you fail to replace or seal the gaskets around the thermostat correctly, it can lead to all kinds of performance issues and even damage to your engine.

What are the thermostat replacement costs at a dealership compared to Fixter garages?

OperationVehicleAverage Dealer PriceFixter PriceAverage Saving
Car thermostat replacementCitroen DS3 Cabrio£226£162–£198£47
Car thermostat replacementJaguar Sovereign£205£150–£184£38
Car thermostat replacementMercedes GLS£197£142–£173£39
Car thermostat replacementVauxhall Astra-G£140£113–£138£15
Car thermostat replacementMercedes E-Class Coupe£140£107–£131£21
Car thermostat replacementNissan NV200£140£107–£131£21
Car thermostat replacementKia Venga£140£113–£138£15
Car thermostat replacementHyundai Terracan£133£108–£133£12
Car thermostat replacementSeat Terra£164£116–£142£35
Car thermostat replacementRover 100 Series£185£151–£185£17

What additional factors could affect thermostat replacement?

Anything that affects your cooling system could impact associated components. For example, you may find you need a flush and clean of the coolant in your system to replace any liquid that’s been contaminated or gone missing. Thermostats tend to suffer when infiltrated by dirt or debris, so a full flush is often on the cards.

What are the costs of car thermostat replacement parts?

Prices for a new car thermostat vary for each make and model. We took a look at some sample prices for parts available at Eurocarparts.

In our search, we took an average for standard 2020 models.

Car MakeCar ModelThermostat Price
BMW5 Series£77

What are the labour times and rates for car thermostat replacement?

Thermostat replacement costs can vary across the country, according to the garage or dealership size, location, the services they offer, and local demand. We checked our records to calculate the average hourly rate.

We found garages within the London area charge an average rate of £78 per hour. The price was a little lower for garages outside London, as expected, at £72 per hour.

How long does a car thermostat replacement take?

An average thermostat replacement takes around 1 hour, with some taking as little as 30 minutes. More problematic replacements can take a little longer where there are issues accessing an awkwardly positioned part or if it’s become seriously stuck in place.

Can you run a car without a thermostat?

A damaged or missing thermostat means operating a car with its coolant valve jammed completely open, closed or somewhere in between. Each case causes issues; none of which can correctly regulate the temperature of your engine.

What are the symptoms of a bad thermostat?

Signs that there’s something amiss with your engine’s heating system start with an array of warnings on your dashboard. The temperature gauge and engine temperature warning light are the most obvious signals. Erratic temperature readings are another strong contender for a failing or failed thermostat, and even a check engine light could be the result of a problematic thermostat.

What happens when a car thermostat goes bad?

A broken or blocked thermostat can cause severe damage to your engine. If the thermostat valve is stuck open, the engine will constantly run at low temperatures. While this doesn’t sound like too big an issue, it reduces engine efficiency and increases emissions. Operating on a reduced efficiency over time can cause unnecessary wear to an otherwise healthy engine.

A thermostat valve stuck in the closed position prevents coolant flow entirely—causing overheating. When your engine overheats, it causes significant damage, so don’t ignore it. Stop the car as soon and as safely possible, and have the faulty component repaired or replaced immediately.

When should I replace my car thermostat?

You should replace your thermostat as soon as you notice a fault or any decline in its operation. However, your thermostat will usually provide years of trouble-free operation, so there’s no need to replace them periodically like you would brake pads and discs, filters, coolant, and engine oil.

However, it’s a good idea to replace the thermostat when upgrading or replacing other cooling system components, especially in older vehicles. A thermostat with over 10 years of operation under its belt is approaching the time where they often start to suffer and fail.

Why do thermostats fail?

Your car thermostat is a necessity every time you drive your car, so, as you can imagine, that’s a lot of opening and closing for the valve that controls your coolant flow. Most thermostats simply wear out from overuse, yet if the coolant is contaminated by dirt finding its way into the radiator or any other part of the system, the valve can become clogged and stuck in either the open or closed position.

It’s one more good reason to stick to a regular vehicle maintenance schedule, checking all fluids, filters, pressures, and performance of every element of your car.

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About Fixter

Fixter is revolutionising the car maintenance industry, one repair at a time. Fixter was founded to make car maintenance as easy as booking a taxi. Digital, transparent and stress-free, with world-class customer service. Since launching in Manchester in 2017, Fixter has expanded to more than 100 towns and cities across the UK and provided thousands of car owners with honest, convenient and affordable car repair services.