My car has been overheating randomly for the past week or so. Can you help?
Sounds to me like you have a "sticky" thermostat!
On your car this is not a real hard thing to take care of! Don' tknow how much you know about engines, but this is a good place to start!
Follow top radiator hose down to engine, - where it hooks on is the thermostat housing, - it is held on by two nuts (or bolts), - possibly may have a bracket or two that need to be removed to get off. Once you have the securing bolts or nuts off, you can lift this piece off, - (it may be stuck and require a couple heavy taps with handle of screwdriver to knock loose)! Lift up carefully and look at the top of thermostat (so you know which side goes up)! - it should have a "pointy thing" sticking up with a small screw visable, (this is the top), -- and part inside housing towards engine has a spring looking thing with a small "wart" below the thermostat plate! This is the "pellet" which senses tempreature and tells thermostat to open!
Clean mating surfaces well, put new thermostat in with proper side up (as you saw one taken out --- if it was properly installed- don't count on it)- this is why I explained which side was up!! Make sure the wide flange of thermostat is within the small depression in housing it fits in, -- if it is off and sticks up on one side, it will break housing when you bolt it down! . Now lay new gasket provided with thermostat (make sure it is in box), - some mfrs. sell thermostat without, and you have to buy gasket extra. If mating surfaces are faily smooth yet, you probably don't need to worry about sealer, and ,most gaskets do not need sealer if surfaces good, - but if badly pitted and goghed out, you probably need ot use some sort of sealer for safe sealing, -- silicone based sealers work fine for this!
Of course before you start a large pan underneath front of engine to catch anti-freeeze as it runs out would be helpful, -- only a quart or less is likely to run out, but even that much is a mess to clean up (and of course you can strain the water and use it again) Water loss probaly not a big deal, and you can top up with water without changing total mix to a great extent!
Since this is not a "modern electronic marvel" and does not have the max in pollution junk all over engine, it is farirly easy and stratight foreward to work on!