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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just a heads up for you all -- I did a "search" here this morning, trying to find the location of the sending unit for my dashboard temperature gague, and seemed to find about everything but. I ended up going to a local NAPA and buying what they said was the replacement, but it was not like what I thought was the unit in my car. FYI: my gague was reading dead center all the time, from start up to shut down, but no other symptoms of engine temperature problems were evident, so I figured it could be the sender / sensor. After bringing the wrong part back to NAPA, the counter man called his supplier, and they gave him the correct number, and I got a part that matched one of those under my hood. Funny thing was, it was what I thought was the sender to the computer, not the sender for the gague -- I was wrong!

Here's the deal: on my '97, the dash gauge sending unit is on the top of the intake crossover, on the PASSENGER side, to the left of the alternator. The computer sending unit is on the backside of the thermostat housing unit, which is on the driver's side, to the right of the alternator. Both senders have plastic "sockets" integrated with their top, NOT a simple brass threaded stud to which you screw a wire and a nut. The Temp gauge sending unit is GREEN, the computer sender is GRAY. Both have two leads, and they are not interchangeable, the plugs on the wires and sockets on the senders are different.

I hope that may help someone.... It would have helped me if I could have found it this morning!!

BTW, when I got the right part, I pulled the plug from the engine, attached it to the UNinstalled sender right there in the NAPA parking lot, and started the engine -- the gauge went right to "Cold" as it should have: Success!! I will install it when the engine cools, this afternoon sometime.

:thumbsup:
 

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i went to advanced auto and had the same problem. the part they gave you was from a 94-95 tbird. even though its the same part number and they looked up the correct year.
 

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am I the only one that reads their repair manuals anymore? if you had just bought a reputable book for the car or asked on here you would have had your answer, sorry you couldn't find it in search, had I seen a thread with you asking I would have told you the answer and saved you the trouble
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Chris, you are NOT the only one, I went to my Ford CD first, then came here -- the only thing on the CD was WAY too broad and non-specific, dealing mostly with pressure testing and core leaks, and so on.... and the only electrical detail I could find was about the cooling fan. When I came here, I wanted info to get the job done, and I did not want to have to wait to see if or who might reply to an inquiry and when. It seemed this was basic stuff, and I was surprised there was no posting with such detail already on the board. So, now there is. Thanks for your comments, it is nice to know I could have gotten the info had I been more patient.

BTW, the correct NAPA part # for this is TS6741.

Hope all this helps!

:cool:
 

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Autozone for 96-97 Cougar/Thunderbirds has the upper radiator hoses swapped from the 3.8 and the 4.6, and they won't fix it.

And you are right, the Ford service CD shows both of them being "Engine Coolant Temperature Senders", but the drivers side also has the "ECT" name with it which lead me to believe it was in fact the ECT for the computer. If you go the EVTM, Cell 151 for the component views, and find the 4.6 engine views, pages 2 and 3 show them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Bangster, thanks, you are right, I finally found them just as you said..... but how silly to make such a simple thing so hard to find! Did you notice on Cell 2 of 3, off to the right, there is a "C106 Engine Coolant Level Sensor"??!?! Does this mean we have an idiot lite somewhere to warn when the level is low? Or is that just to alert the computer? Thanks, again!

Btw, new sender installed, gauge works just fine, again!

:D
 

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Yes, there is a light on the dash for low coolant. As someone who has had a heater hose burst, coolant crossover on the intake break, and the upper radiator hose burst, I am intimate with that indicator!

Good to hear that the you got the gauge working again!
 

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"Yes, there is a light on the dash for low coolant. As someone who has had a heater hose burst, coolant crossover on the intake break, and the upper radiator hose burst, I am intimate with that indicator!"

My low coolant indicator does not work! The light comes on when I turn on the key, but when the tank is empty the light does not come on. The sensor is bad or perhaps it never worked.
I cannot understand why ford chose to put the temp sending unit in the crossover; It should be in the cyl. head. If the plastic crossover cracks and leaks out the coolant, the coolant gauge will not tell you and if your low coolant sensor does not work, you will probably only know it when the oil light comes on (after extreme over heating) or you see or smell coolant.

Another better idea from ford I guess.
 

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Yeah, later on they put a CHT sensor instead of the ECT (my 2000 Grand Marquis has that), and it is what is used to put it into failsafe cooling mode, but you are right, when there is no coolant reaching the sensor if it is all boiling out, the temperature gauge actually goes down.

Twice I almost crashed the car because I was taking off on what I thought was dry pavement, and spun out in the coolant I was dumping. Then the low coolant light came on. Then the temperature dropped.
 
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