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Old 11-26-2011, 03:51 PM   #1
colt1911
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Default 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

I believe the coolant temperature sensor on my wife's 2001 Impala is
going bad. Cooling fans run constantly and tempter gauge doesn't go above
cool zone. The sensor is located on the left of the radiator. Does it just
pull off, twist off, or do you have to get primitive on it's @$$ and pry it off. There is a little wire clip wrapped around it that I got off fairly
easy but I can't seem to get the sensor off without breaking it. By chance
any yinz guys ever have one off??

Or could there be another problem altogether?
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Old 11-26-2011, 04:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

Wassa matter loser, You cant fix it? bwahaaaa! Welcome too the GJ, Rich!
Somebody here can help You, I promise. (Rich is a buddy of mine)
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Old 11-26-2011, 04:18 PM   #3
Lotek
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

Do you have a check engine light? Possibly code p0128? That could be a bad thermostat. The sensor on the radiator is coolant level, not temp. the coolant temp sensor is under the throttlebody. Check for coolant leaks.
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Old 11-26-2011, 04:28 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

I think the one on the radiator is the low coolant sensor not, the ECT.

The fans are also controlled by the AC controller.
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Old 11-26-2011, 04:33 PM   #5
colt1911
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

Nope no leaks. How do you get to the coolant temp sensor? In other words... "Is it a real pain in the butt?" Bronson is the one that told me about you guys.
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Old 11-26-2011, 05:41 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

bump
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:43 PM   #7
brett09
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

I had a 2003, and it constantly ran hot. Your fans should stay on pretty much full time whenever the AC is on. I ended up having to replace 2 of the 3 fan relays, and the thermostat plus they had the electric fans replaced under warranty. However this was all because my fans wouldn't come on, ever unless the AC was on.

I would replace the thermostat/oring seal first before I went trying to take off the intake manifold, which I believe is required to replace the sensor. Also check the coolant level, if you haven't already since your fans are constantly on with the temp still being up. Also I believe the OEM temp is 192 for the thermostat. My car ran much better with a 180 thermostat. Depends where you live if you'd want to do that.
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Old 11-26-2011, 07:52 PM   #8
BillK
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

Colt,
The easiest, and probably cheapest thing to do first is to hook a scanner up and see what the computer (pcm) thinks that the temperature is and what it is telling the fans to do. If the pcm thinks the engine is hot and is turning the fans on, you might be correct in assuming it is the sensor but if the pcm does not see a hot temperature and is still telling the fans to come on, it could be something else. It might think the AC is on ? The PCM itself could be bad ? The fan relay could be bad ? AC switch ? etc etc etc .......
Personally, I dont think the sensor is bad because if it was it would more than likely be setting a code and turning on the check engine light.

What I am getting at is that you can throw a BUNCH of money at this thing and still not have it fixed if you dont find out what is really wrong to begin with. If you dont have a scanner (not a "code reader") it might be worth paying a good shop an hours worth of labor to hook one up and see if they can find the problem. Even if you want to replace the part yourself, it will probably save you some money.

Just my opinion,
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Old 11-26-2011, 10:34 PM   #9
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

Quote:
Originally Posted by brett09 View Post
I had a 2003, and it constantly ran hot. Your fans should stay on pretty much full time whenever the AC is on. I ended up having to replace 2 of the 3 fan relays, and the thermostat plus they had the electric fans replaced under warranty. However this was all because my fans wouldn't come on, ever unless the AC was on.

I would replace the thermostat/oring seal first before I went trying to take off the intake manifold, which I believe is required to replace the sensor. Also check the coolant level, if you haven't already since your fans are constantly on with the temp still being up. Also I believe the OEM temp is 192 for the thermostat. My car ran much better with a 180 thermostat. Depends where you live if you'd want to do that.
Lower temp thermostat is a good way to get a p0128, you are going to need a scantool to test the sensor, simplest way is to compare the intake air temp to the coolant temp on a cold motor, should be within a degree. Certain codes will cause the ecm to command the cooling fans on high, failsafe, that is probably the case here. Billk is right, if you don't have access to a scantool, buy some diagnosis instead of spinning the wheel of parts.
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Another example of when God turns to Darwin and says "I thought you were going to fix this s@#t".

"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. "

"I have a hammer! I can put things together! I can knock things apart! I can alter my environment at will and make an incredible din all the while! Ah, it's great to be male!" -Calvin

Last edited by Lotek; 11-26-2011 at 10:36 PM.
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Old 11-27-2011, 12:48 PM   #10
colt1911
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

O.K. this is weird guys. I started to get ready to replace the temp sensor. I unhooked the battery and also disconnected the coolent level sensor in case I would have to replace it also. I didn't have time and weather to do the job right so I hooked the coolent level sensor back up along with the battery. Now everything is fine and working. What the heck?
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Old 11-27-2011, 01:43 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

You reset the PCM by having the batt unhooked. Drive it for a while and see what happens.
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Old 12-08-2011, 09:55 PM   #12
leonj
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

I have this same issues on a 2001 Impala. I've changed out the sensor and this corrected the problem for about 2 days. Then the problem came back and the check engine light came on. I use a program call Autotap and checked this and the sesnor was reading correctly in the software, but the guage wasn't indicating properly. After resetting the check engine light the gauge started working correctly. I've read on ther sites that this maybe a grounding issue for the PCM. I hadn't had a chance to follow up on this but I'll check this out and repost. If anyone else has any insight to this issue please post.
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Old 12-08-2011, 10:16 PM   #13
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Default Re: 2001 Chevy Impala coolant sensor?

There is nothing wrong with the gauge, when you get a cooling system related code, usually a p0128, usually a bad thermostat, the gauge goes to zero, and the cooling fans come on high, you usually get an overheat message. The idea is to protect the motor and get the driver's attention. Diagnose and repair the code, don't just reset it by disconnecting the battery.
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Another example of when God turns to Darwin and says "I thought you were going to fix this s@#t".

"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. "

"I have a hammer! I can put things together! I can knock things apart! I can alter my environment at will and make an incredible din all the while! Ah, it's great to be male!" -Calvin
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