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Old 01-14-2017, 07:33 PM   #1
Duhminic
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Default Saturn sl engine temperature

Hey guys one last question, I've replaced my ECTS and it seems to warm up faster and run a little hotter like a little above 1/4. But my question is when I'm in traffic or I stay idle for a long while the temp goes to 1/2 until I start driving again. Is this a problem? Thanks again

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Old 01-14-2017, 08:55 PM   #2
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

Not a problem. It's natural. As you sit in traffic the needle goes as high as between 5/8 to 3/4 mark before the electric fan kicks in and the needle heads back down to just below half again. It reminds me of watching a good Pong game.
The days of your needle lingering at the 1/4 mark are over now that your ECTS has been righted.

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Old 01-14-2017, 10:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

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Originally Posted by dummo View Post
Not a problem. It's natural. As you sit in traffic the needle goes as high as between 5/8 to 3/4 mark before the electric fan kicks in and the needle heads back down to just below half again. It reminds me of watching a good Pong game.
The days of your needle lingering at the 1/4 mark are over now that your ECTS has been righted.
Well it still lingers at 1/4 most of the time even with the new ECTS but i noticed the engine itself is a little hotter. not sure if its something else making it stay at 1/4

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Old 01-15-2017, 06:50 AM   #4
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

The ECTS does not make the engine itself "hotter" or "warm up" faster. It cannot (except one that is faulty may not turn on the fan at correct timing) but that is not was not your issue. All the ECTS does is report to the ECM what the engine coolant temp actually is and controlling the temp is the job of your thermostat.
What you're experiencing is the placebo effect. Like some people who swear their car rides smoother and quieter after you wax it.
The only thing that can really change the operating temp of your engine is the thermostat. You can do what I suggested and what I do is use an old fashioned meat thermometer or a deep fry/candy thermometer and drop that in the coolant tank. While you're doing this you can make some important observations. You can tell if and when your thermostat opens. You should just begin to see flow increasing in there as the stat opens which should be about 185 to 190F. As the engine continues to warm you should see vigorous flow begin about 200 to 210 meaning you're getting full radiator flow because the stat has fully opened.
If you see anything different you need a new stat

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Old 01-15-2017, 07:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

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Originally Posted by underthehood View Post
The ECTS does not make the engine itself "hotter" or "warm up" faster. It cannot (except one that is faulty may not turn on the fan at correct timing) but that is not was not your issue. All the ECTS does is report to the ECM what the engine coolant temp actually is and controlling the temp is the job of your thermostat.
What you're experiencing is the placebo effect. Like some people who swear their car rides smoother and quieter after you wax it.
The only thing that can really change the operating temp of your engine is the thermostat. You can do what I suggested and what I do is use an old fashioned meat thermometer or a deep fry/candy thermometer and drop that in the coolant tank. While you're doing this you can make some important observations. You can tell if and when your thermostat opens. You should just begin to see flow increasing in there as the stat opens which should be about 185 to 190F. As the engine continues to warm you should see vigorous flow begin about 200 to 210 meaning you're getting full radiator flow because the stat has fully opened.
If you see anything different you need a new stat
Thanks for the info! The thermostat has never been replaced and i need new coolant anyways, ill give replacing it a try and post back my results!

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Old 01-15-2017, 10:55 AM   #6
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

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Originally Posted by underthehood View Post
The ECTS does not make the engine itself "hotter" or "warm up" faster. It cannot (except one that is faulty may not turn on the fan at correct timing) but that is not was not your issue. All the ECTS does is report to the ECM what the engine coolant temp actually is
Yep, this is what we were trying to explain in your other thread.

Your engine temperature is essentially the same before and after your ECTS change. The only difference is what you are seeing on the temp gauge, which was reading wrong before the change, but is now reading correctly after the change.

You'll also see better mpg - one of the things resulting from a bad ECTS is the PCM (computer) things the engine temp is still too cold (even though it might be at proper running temp) and think, "Hey, I need to add gas, run richer, and idle faster to warm the engine up faster"

And as noted, it will not turn your electric fan on, even when the engine is overheated, because it thinks the engine is still cold (and will show 1/4 on the gauge with a bad ECTS, even though coolant is boiling over)

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Old 01-16-2017, 12:23 AM   #7
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

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Originally Posted by alordofchaos View Post
Yep, this is what we were trying to explain in your other thread.

Your engine temperature is essentially the same before and after your ECTS change. The only difference is what you are seeing on the temp gauge, which was reading wrong before the change, but is now reading correctly after the change.

You'll also see better mpg - one of the things resulting from a bad ECTS is the PCM (computer) things the engine temp is still too cold (even though it might be at proper running temp) and think, "Hey, I need to add gas, run richer, and idle faster to warm the engine up faster"

And as noted, it will not turn your electric fan on, even when the engine is overheated, because it thinks the engine is still cold (and will show 1/4 on the gauge with a bad ECTS, even though coolant is boiling over)
I want to say thanks to all who gave me advice! I changed out the thermostat and used a junkyard brass (I think) ECTS and now the car runs at about a tiny bit before 1/2 and sometimes 1/2 but never over! I assume this is operating temp?

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Old 01-16-2017, 05:44 AM   #8
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Default Re: Saturn sl engine temperature

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Originally Posted by Duhminic View Post
I want to say thanks to all who gave me advice! I changed out the thermostat and used a junkyard brass (I think) ECTS and now the car runs at about a tiny bit before 1/2 and sometimes 1/2 but never over! I assume this is operating temp?
That's the range you want. To test ECTS and fan function you can let the car sit while running until the fan comes on, somewhere in the 5/8 or so range on the gauge for your car. That way you know the automatic fan function is working so you won't overheat the car.

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