Help With Sensor - Chevy SSR Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 10:47 AM Thread Starter
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My SSR:
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Help With Sensor

While changing our R's spark plugs and wires yesterday I had to disconnect what I think is the engine coolant temperature sensor. The sensor is located just to the left of plug #1 (front-most plug on the driver's side).

Of course as soon as I lifted the clip attaching the sensor's wire to the sensor itself the clip snapped off. Being right next to the manifold the heat made it brittle. I plugged it back in and it's working fine, but now I'm worried about it working itself loose at some point. The clip part is attached to the plug, not the sensor (of course).

I was going to temporarily wrap it with electrical tape but I don't want it to melt and become problematic. The wire/connector is part of a good-sized loom so it looks like it'd be a bear to replace.

Welcome the expert's here thoughts as to how to address this.

TIA!
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Cheers,

Rich


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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:09 AM
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Rich this one will be relatively easy. Go online and find the replacement end. It may come with a wire section that you won't need. You just want the plastic end. They have a tool that releases the wires out of the end and slide your originals out of the broken terminal end and then slide them into the new plastic end and plug it back in. Check with the auto parts store they may even have the tool kit as a loaner tool you can rent from them to keep from buying one. They make cheap removal tools if you need to order that as well. You can probably fix this for around $20 if you have to order the tool and end.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:15 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stlhotrod View Post
Rich this one will be relatively easy. Go online and find the replacement end. It may come with a wire section that you won't need. You just want the plastic end. They have a tool that releases the wires out of the end and slide your originals out of the broken terminal end and then slide them into the new plastic end and plug it back in. Check with the auto parts store they may even have the tool kit as a loaner tool you can rent from them to keep from buying one. They make cheap removal tools if you need to order that as well. You can probably fix this for around $20 if you have to order the tool and end.
Wow Stlhotrod, that's great news! I thought I was in for one big headache.

I will start looking for everything today and post back my progress.

As I've said before, this site is a national treasure!

Thanks again!

Cheers,

Rich


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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:18 AM
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Google search Weather pack end removal. They are nice and easy. You maybe able to get just that plastic end from the parts store. I found them at my local Auto Zone and they had the tool even.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:19 AM
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I just changed my plugs and I came up from wheel well (had to take wheel off). I had to take radiator tank of on right side.
Can you use a small wire tie until you replace the wiring?
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Stlhotrod View Post
Google search Weather pack end removal. They are nice and easy. You maybe able to get just that plastic end from the parts store. I found them at my local Auto Zone and they had the tool even.
Sweet! There's an AutoZone nearby so I'll give it a try.

Thanks again!

Cheers,

Rich


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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 12Pack View Post
I just changed my plugs and I came up from wheel well (had to take wheel off). I had to take radiator tank of on right side.
Can you use a small wire tie until you replace the wiring?
I learned my lesson... some plugs are easier to attack from below, but I have to buy some jack stands first.

I thought about a wire tie, but it's really small and there really isn't much to tie it to.

Hopefully I can follow Stlhotrod's advice and get it sorted out.

Still raining on-and-off anyway, so I still have a little time before I can't wait any longer to get 'er outside!

Cheers,

Rich


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-19-2019, 12:21 PM Thread Starter
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Looks like this is the part I need and a Lisle 56500 Terminal Tool to work on it.

Now - and I'm not bragging - but if I only had smaller hands to get in there to get the job done!

Thanks so much for all of the great (and über speedy) advice!

Cheers,

Rich


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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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My SSR:
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Well, thanks to Stlhotrod's sage advice I was able to replace the R's engine coolant temperature sensor weather pack connector. As mentioned earlier the brittle retaining clip snapped off when I pulled the wires to change the #1 spark plug.

The new connector and removal tools arrived yesterday so I set aside some time to watch a couple of DIY videos, threw the fender cover on and dove in. As Stlhotrod said, it's fairly straight forward, although as with a lot (most?) of the engine work, space is a big challenge. Fortunately the sensor is fairly high up and, well, not terrible to reach.

After a few attempts at inserting the correct terminal removal tool into the connector and tugging on the wires, nothing would budge. Inspecting the new connector I found that the end that fits into the sensor itself can be removed. That would give me clear access to the tiny tabs that hold the terminals in place. So I popped the same piece off of the existing connector. There they were... and they were just as hard and brittle as the retaining clip. I tried raising them and tugging on the wires again but no-go. I pushed each tab up a bit more and "snap" what a happy sound (this time). With the tabs out of the way the wires slipped out easily. So in the end I didn't even need the speciality tools, but I have them JIC there's a next time.

I took photos of the two-wire orientation. 50/50 chance that it could be wrong, but with me, it's a 100% chance that it would be. So I swapped out one wire at a time to be certain. Once they slid in place I replaced the end piece and it looked like new. A few more contortions and it fit back into the sensor with a satisfying "click" of the retainer clip.

Fired her up, ran it for a bit and it all looks good... no errors and the temp gauge appears to be working fine. Phew!

Not the most fun thing to spend an hour or so on, but a good learning experience. I've attached a few photos (in addition to the ones in my original post) showing the various stages of R&R.

Thanks so much Stlhotrod! You're a life saver!
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Cheers,

Rich


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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 09:10 PM Thread Starter
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My SSR:
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A couple more photos...
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Cheers,

Rich


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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-25-2019, 06:32 AM
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Rich, just think of it as a nice bonding experience, just you and your beloved R. lol

Dave
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-25-2019, 11:43 AM
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Rich, I have bookmarked you as the go to guy for this repair if I need it on my upcoming trip to the northwest!
GOOD JOB!
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