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Today on the commute home, in slow moving bumper to bumper traffic the temp needle started to move to the other side of the line. It happened rather quickly, maybe after about 5 mins, and I got off after 15 mins total and it went back to normal. I don't think the car should be heating up that fast! I mean it didn't overheat, but the needle did start to move after only a short time in traffic. I would hate to be stuck in traffic for an extended period. Thoughts?

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Start by checking your coolant level and also check the front radiators for debris.

There is an excellent DIY video on removing the bumper and cleaning the radiators in the Videos section.

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If by 'line' you mean the center, straight up position. Then that behavior is normal. You'll see it go from straight up to approaching the next tic mark every few minutes. It will do it quite often in traffic.

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If the outside temperature is more than 40C then the coolant temp of my 05 CTT wanders upwards by up to 10C, this occurs when driving above 130kph but never when stopped. I asked my Porsche specialist shop to check it out and was told that the temps recorded were within normal parameters. With outside temperatures below 40C the needle remains just to the left of the centre line at all times.

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I too drive an '04 CS. They are complex, heavy vehicles with large engines and a lot of heated fluids circulating around.

Porsche gauges reflect reality and in reality vehicles with internal combustion engines generate more heat while stationary and all vehicles experience significant temperature ranges, It's normal. Most mainstream vehicle (non-Porsche) coolant gauges are calibrated to hold the mid-mark to keep folks from freaking out. It's a perception issue and you'll find a few threads on this topic here in Renntech.org. For example my '03 VW Golf/GTI's coolant temp gauge holds the mid-mark no matter what the true temps are.

I recall a drive from San Francisco to Los Angeles in my Cayenne in the summer (hot day) with a major tailwind -- sure enough my temp reflected this, it was elevated. I was very impressed. Also, keep in mind your Cayenne has a heat exchanger; oil~coolant so you'll want to observe both gauges and the relative relationship therein. Over time you'll note the relationship between overall conditions and gauge readings.

And, as always, Loren's advice is spot on. Check your levels and keep your radiators clean.

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Good post above. +1.

I find you have to drive over about 45mph before the radiators start doing their job efficiently.

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Thanks for sharing all your thoughts! The coolant is just above the "MIN" mark, would it be alright to add distilled water? I swapped out my bumper for a turbo last year and in the process cleaned my radiators. This commute in traffic is new to me and the car, so I guess I feel a little better .

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