The most common reason for a coolant temperature gauge not working is a problem with the coolant temperature sensor. Signs of a bad sensor include black smoke in the exhaust, a car using more gas than usual or a car overheating frequently. The check engine light also comes on when there is a problem with the coolant temperature sensor.
The location of the coolant temperature sensor depends on the make and model of the car. However, most sensors are located in or near the thermostat of the cooling system, so it's wise to check the manual of the car to see if there are one or two sensors.
The coolant temperature sensor measures the resistance to the coolant and sends this information to the engine's control unit. The measurements are then relayed to the coolant temperature gauge. It is normal for a gauge to show a very low temperature when a car is first started, but after approximately 20 minutes, the needle of the gauge should rest at the midpoint.
Before replacing the coolant temperature sensor, check to make sure that none of the wires leading to and from the sensor are frayed or cut. Also, look behind the gauge to make sure it is properly wired.Learn More
While manufacturers use different types of coolant-level sensors, the simplest is a float that activates a switch. If the coolant drops below the designated level, the switch opens, sending a signal to the indicator light. Manufacturers install these switches either in the coolant recovery tank or in the radiator. Regardless of the type of sensor, it should cause the light to illuminate if the level drops.Full Answer >
Heat that is coming from inside the car as well as outside of the car can cause the temperature gauge of the car to increase. When temperatures are extremely high within the inside of the car, the temperature gauge will greatly increase and the car could suffer from many different problems.Full Answer >
There are two main parts to a fuel gauge: the sender and the gauge. The sender is a float that is in the car's gas tank. The sender tells the gauge how much fuel is left in the tank, and this information is displayed on the dash of the car.Full Answer >
In most cases, a vehicle's coolant should be changed roughly every 24,000 to 36,000 miles. A driver may want to change his coolant more if he often drives in hot temperatures.Full Answer >