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Old 04-15-2019, 06:17 AM   #1
Jef1qr
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Default Cooling fan activating too late ??

My temp gauge reads 3/4 towards Hot before the fan kicks on. Temp sensor is new. Is this ok ?
93 SL2 dohc

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Old 04-15-2019, 07:52 AM   #2
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1999 SL2
2001 SL1
Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

I believe so. The operating temperature for GEN1, which your car is, is in and about the 1/2 mark on the temp gauge. Operating temperature is around 193-195 F. When the car in not moving the temperature will increase and at 221F the fan will kick on. This brings you in and around the 3/4 mark. GEN2 and GEN3 temp gauges are calibrated different and read lower however the operating temperatures are the same. You can confirm this with a code reader that has live data.

...
2001 SL1 MT (428,500 km @ 01/2019)
1999 SL2 MT (272,500 km @ 01/2019)
2011 Suburban LT (120,506 km @ 01/2019)

Past Saturns
1993 SW2 AT (10y)
2001 LW200 MT (3.5y)
1992 SL2 MT (5y)

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Old 04-15-2019, 09:03 AM   #3
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2001 SC2
Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

Sounds early to be honest. Gen 1's don't read 222f until just before the red marks on the gauge while the newer ones show it before the 3/4 mark (same actual temp all years).

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Old 04-15-2019, 01:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by fetchitfido View Post
Sounds early to be honest. Gen 1's don't read 222f until just before the red marks on the gauge while the newer ones show it before the 3/4 mark (same actual temp all years).
From my observation the GEN2/GEN3 fan on is just past 1/2 whereas for the GEN1 it is in and around the 3/4 mark. I've owned all 3 generations (92 SL2, 93 SW2, 99 SL2 & 01 SL1). GEN2 temp gauges are calibrated the coolest whereas GEN1 is the warmest. Keep in mind that actual coolant temperatures are the same.

My observation corresponds to a lot of what I read within this forum. Here's a good example...

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
Same values as the ECTS. Just convert the temperature to resistance. The temp/resistance chart is in my gallery. Use the middle of a given resistance range for each temperature. The gauge sensor has both pins connected to 1 end of the thermistor and the other end is connected to the shell. Connect test resistor from the connector to block to check the gauge.

Saturn 96 model year and newer temperature gauge reading vs. actual temperature as read from the ECTS.

GAGE Reading..........ECTS Temperature..........Event
.....1/4.................................150 F
.....3/8.................................192 F...................T-stat cracks open
.....3/8+................................195 F
.....1/2.................................212 F
.....9/16................................221 F...................Fan ON
.....7/16................................210 F...................Fan OFF coast to 205 F

The installed thermostat is marked as 87 C

Add 1/8 to the gauge reading column to obtain the corresponding gauge indication for Saturn 95 model year and older.

...
2001 SL1 MT (428,500 km @ 01/2019)
1999 SL2 MT (272,500 km @ 01/2019)
2011 Suburban LT (120,506 km @ 01/2019)

Past Saturns
1993 SW2 AT (10y)
2001 LW200 MT (3.5y)
1992 SL2 MT (5y)

:canada:

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Old 04-15-2019, 03:32 PM   #5
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Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

With an old car, two things to be aware of in regards to the cooling system - the original cooling fan and cooling system. If the cooling system is maintained, flushed, replaced with new coolant and looks clean with a good radiator, the cooling system should be fine. An original cooling fan can wear out and run slower. You should hear the fan roar when it runs otherwise it may run slower and allow the cooling system to overheat when spring and summer temps arrive. Cooling fans won't last forever. The ac condenser coil should be clean and free of debris and bent fins. Since it's in front of the radiator, airflow must be free to flow thru. If ac is dead and you don't want to repair it, you can lighten the front end by removing the condenser coil, drier and hoses. The compressor must remain as the pulley is needed as part of the drive belt system. If you know a smaller belt size then compressor can be removed too.

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Old 04-15-2019, 09:07 PM   #6
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1996 SW2
Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

I think I asked this at the time (couple of years ago) but I've forgotten the answer. My 1996SW2 temp guage was showing colder than normal so I had the thermostat replaced. Now, although it hasn't seemed to be an issue, the "normal" operating range of the gauge is much closer to 1/2 that the 3/8 that everyone says it ought to be. In southwest summers it can read a bit higher, yet, but the fan does come on before the red line. Are there two different temperature thermostats? Would that explain the difference on the gauge?

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Old 04-16-2019, 06:15 AM   #7
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1995 SL1
Default Re: Cooling fan activating too late ??

Quote:
Originally Posted by trottida View Post
From my observation the GEN2/GEN3 fan on is just past 1/2 whereas for the GEN1 it is in and around the 3/4 mark. I've owned all 3 generations (92 SL2, 93 SW2, 99 SL2 & 01 SL1). GEN2 temp gauges are calibrated the coolest whereas GEN1 is the warmest. Keep in mind that actual coolant temperatures are the same.

My observation corresponds to a lot of what I read within this forum. Here's a good example...
My '95 fan on point is right about 3/4 even on the gauge, possibly a little higher.

As for the quoted chart, known to be completely whacked at lower temperatures. First gen cars are 150 when passing the C mark, 180 at the 1/4 mark. Up around 1/2 on the gauge the various generation cars will overlap, but really other than that they are different beasts, with the early cars having much more gauge movement for the same amount of temperature swing.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister_Cee View Post
I think I asked this at the time (couple of years ago) but I've forgotten the answer. My 1996SW2 temp guage was showing colder than normal so I had the thermostat replaced. Now, although it hasn't seemed to be an issue, the "normal" operating range of the gauge is much closer to 1/2 that the 3/8 that everyone says it ought to be. In southwest summers it can read a bit higher, yet, but the fan does come on before the red line. Are there two different temperature thermostats? Would that explain the difference on the gauge?
Most of the aftermarket thermostats run warmer than the factory shipped units did. Combined with variances in the generations, individual cars, etc.... and it's just a crap shoot.

The best thing to do is check gauge vs actual and go from there. As for cooler running units closer to stock temps, I'm not sure if anyone has one these days. I used a Motorad unit with the housing, and it was a little cooler than the NAPA unit, but still not "from the factory" cooler.

...
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