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Old 05-15-2006, 04:53 PM   #1
bubba1ton
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Question P0128 code issue

I recently had a radom "service engine soon" light problem. I thought it was linked to the fuel I was burning, but when I checked the code at Autozone, it turned out to be a P0128 code. The autzone rep said either a thermostat or ECT sensor problem. The car runs fine, no overheating. IT always runs a tick above the 1/4 mark when driving, and then in traffic at a light on a hot day when it hits a tick above half, the fan kicks on to cool it down. There seems to be no problems. Anybody heard of this. Saturn service rep says the ECT sensor may be cracked. If this is true, is there a way to check it, and is it easy to change? Saturn rep said around $300-$400 to change it out. That's a bit too steep. Any info or ideas would be great.
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:13 PM   #2
peppermrj
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

A year and mileage is always good to include. Do a search on ECTS and you will find more than you ever wanted to know. See the first two stickies in the How To library for replacement procedures. About $20.00 dollars from the dealer.
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:16 PM   #3
Ken Benson
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

P0128 is for the thermostat, but it might possibly be the ECTS too. Both parts are relatively inexpensive, and not hard to to with minimal tools. I'd do replacement for both at the same time, as you'll be draining the coolant too. Instructions should be in How-to section of the forum. Look up the ECTS how-to as well, just make sure that the replacement ECTS is the brass tip style, not the resin tip.

If the car already has the brass tip style, no need to change it, just stick with the thermostat.

Make sure your coolant level is good too.

If someone else knows another reason the code might pop up, they'll let you know!
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:20 PM   #4
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

Sorry, it's an '02 SL2 with 96,000 on it. It runs good though, that's what seems so odd. I have looked up some ECT info and it seems pretty easy to deal with. I was wondering if the '02's have the brass tipped sensors? Then I would check the thermostat. Thanks all.
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:27 PM   #5
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

They went with the brass tip update in 2001. You should be good there. Check the connection anyway. To prevent pollution the thermostat should let the engine reach operating temp asasp. If not you get the light. Mechanical thermostats aren't exactly precise. Try clearing the code and see if it returns before you do anything. Might just be a fluke.
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Old 05-16-2006, 05:20 PM   #6
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Dizzy Re: P0128 code issue

This is getting more and more strange. I've been running Chevron gas because the car runs better with it. Everytime I would fill up with Chevron the "SES" light would come on. At first I thought it was coincidence, and I thought it was an emmission problem. That's when I had the code checked at P0128. Well just to see what would happen I ran cheap Wal Mart gas in it. About 100 to 150 miles the light shut off. That is what is strange about this whole "SES" code. It only happens when I run Chevron gas. Anybody have a clue. Someone said I should check the ECT connector because it may be corroded. But why would that be affected by only Chevron gas. IT's getting strange.
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Old 05-16-2006, 05:32 PM   #7
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

IMO just coincidence. P0128 is an emmision code. When the engine is below a certain operating temp (or the PCM thinks it is) it does not go into the closed loop mode. This wastes fuel and causes higher emmisions.

I doubt if the connector is corroded. That is usually the result of a cracked tip on the old style ECTS. Still check the conection. Never know what you might find.

Swap out the stat and see what happens if the code returns.

Good luck and let us know.
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Old 05-17-2006, 04:25 AM   #8
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Default Re: P0128 code issue

As long as the code stays the same with the switching of the gas, it is just coincidence. Sorry, but it sounds like you need to replace the Tstat. ECT should already be the brass one.
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