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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-04-2008, 07:54 PM Thread Starter
 
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Temperature sensor question

Is the sensor that runs the temperature gauge on the instrument cluster the same sensor that determines when the electric cooling fan comes on?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-04-2008, 07:56 PM
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No, its just for the gauge. The ecc has its own temp sender unit to determine when the fan kicks on.

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-04-2008, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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Wow, that was a really quick response, thank you. That's what I thought, but I wasn't sure. Looks like I'm going to have to change that sensor then, because my temp gauge doesn't register anything. I'm just glad it won't effect the cooling fan.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2008, 06:00 AM
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And the gauge sensor is easier to get to!

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2008, 02:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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That's good that its easer to get to, lol. Where is it? Also, a related question, I don't think its my sensor, I think its actually my thermostat that is stuck open. The problem is this: I was in a slight wreck that dented in my hood, enough that I can't open it and then get it back closed. I have a 5 and a half hour trip home from school for spring break (and of course the same amount of time back), and I know that engine wear is increased when you run it and its not up to normal operating temp. How much damage would I do to my car driving it for that distance (roughly 320 miles one-way) with a stuck-open thermostat. Would it be advisable to not drive it?
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-05-2008, 04:12 PM
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The temp sender for the gauge is located in the coolant tree on the right side of the intake manifold (looking from the front of the car), the same tree that has a hose going from it to the metal pipe coming out of the water pump. It has a single wire going to it. To test the gauge, unplug this wire and ground it with the key ON. It should go all the way to HOT. If it doesn't there is a problem with the wiring or the gauge.

You wouldn't cause any damage to the engine in that trip. If the thermostat was indeed stuck open, the worst that would probably happen is bad fuel economy because the car is stuck in open loop and will be continuously running in fuel enrichment mode to try and warm up the car. I wouldn't keep driving the car like that as it will eventually take it's toll, but check the upper hose to see if it's warm before going into anything. If it is, the thermostat is probably ok and the sender is just bad.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-06-2008, 04:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for the helpful answer, Chris. I hope my gas mileage doesn't suffer too badly. It usually takes me about 5/8 to 3/4 of a tank to make that trip. I hope I can make it home on one tank of gas, lol.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-16-2008, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
 
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Changed the thermostat, and she is back to normal. Yay!
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