Ambient air temperature sensor

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
Good morning all, I am going to replace the ambient air temperature sensor today. I know it's located near the radiator, I can look at the service manual to find where exactly it is. Is it just a matter of removing the old and installing the new one or is there more to it than that? I looked for a thread to help me out but can't find one. Any do's or don't I should know about?

Thanks.
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR
Denali n DOO said:
...I can look at the service manual ...
Or run a Google image search. :wink:

Simple plug and play. If the system needs sensor resetting, it's a simple matter of pressing MODE, DEFROST, and REAR DEFROST all at the same time.
 

BRomanJr

Member
Dec 9, 2011
371
Denali n DOO said:
Good morning all, I am going to replace the ambient air temperature sensor today. I know it's located near the radiator, I can look at the service manual to find where exactly it is. Is it just a matter of removing the old and installing the new one or is there more to it than that? I looked for a thread to help me out but can't find one. Any do's or don't I should know about?

Thanks.

In front of the radiator and condenser on the driver side very near the battery.

IIRC it snaps into the grille.

Unless it reads incorrectly after replacing, there is nothing more to do. If it reads wrong, there is a button sequence to reset it or you could pull the HVAC fuse (rear fuse block, fuse 36) or disconnect the battery.
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
the roadie said:
Whew. At least it wasn't ME that got scooped this time. :raspberry:

But you offered more details. Advantage to BRomanJr. :wink:

Not that there's an unwritten competition around here to be the most helpful. :cool:

But wait....there's still time for info. For me even the easiest stuff gets complicated, I found the sensor but looks like I gotta get the grill out of the way. I have the 6 clips on top of grill out but I can't seem to lift the grill out, I'm afraid to break it. Of course I got those stupid headlight washers hoses to deal with too. I don't want my $7.70 repair to turn into a $307.70 repair by busting the grill. Should the grill just lift straight up or is it bolted in there somehow?

Thanks.
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
Denali n DOO said:
But wait....there's still time for info. For me even the easiest stuff gets complicated, I found the sensor but looks like I gotta get the grill out of the way. I have the 6 clips on top of grill out but I can't seem to lift the grill out, I'm afraid to break it. Of course I got those stupid headlight washers hoses to deal with too. I don't want my $7.70 repair to turn into a $307.70 repair by busting the grill. Should the grill just lift straight up or is it bolted in there somehow?

Thanks.

Okay I got my skinny fingers out and managed to change it without grill removal. It started up at the same wrong temp, I did the button combo reset and think all is good now.

Thank you! :thumbsup:
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
Denali n DOO said:
Okay I got my skinny fingers out and managed to change it without grill removal. It started up at the same wrong temp, I did the button combo reset and think all is good now.

Thank you! :thumbsup:

I just went for drive and also thought I'd mention that my auto climate mode works much better too! The ac feels much colder and I also seemed to have gained control of the temps between cold and hot.

That was an easy repair, I hope the Nav install goes as smooth as this repair.....but I doubt it!

Thanks BRomanJr and Roadie, much appreciated :tiphat:
 

Wooluf1952

Member
Nov 20, 2011
2,663
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Denali n DOO said:
But wait....there's still time for info. For me even the easiest stuff gets complicated, I found the sensor but looks like I gotta get the grill out of the way. I have the 6 clips on top of grill out but I can't seem to lift the grill out, I'm afraid to break it. Of course I got those stupid headlight washers hoses to deal with too. I don't want my $7.70 repair to turn into a $307.70 repair by busting the grill. Should the grill just lift straight up or is it bolted in there somehow?

Thanks.

For future reference, there are two tabs that slide into slots at the bottom of the grille. You should be able to see them without removing the grille.
 

Vosper

Member
Jul 18, 2012
8
Just did mine also this past Saturday in the NAPA parking lot, had to reset cause it was reading 19 deg F. Now it works perfectly. Changed mine cause 2x last week it read 19 deg and the A/C wouldnt cool.
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
Well....so I just put the Envoy in the garage for the night, or at least the next 4 hours. It's 14 degres right now, when I started it up the damn truck it says its 35 degres out. Just when I thought it was normal again it does this. I wonder what it's gonna do in the morning. Maybe the wires going to the sensor are no good? Maybe I should pull a fuse and force a reset? I tried the 3 button reset already. Not sure what else could be the problem. I'll leave it at that for now and see where it's at in the morning.

Thanks.
 

TollKeeper

Supporting Donor
Member
Dec 3, 2011
8,053
Brighton, CO
I would not worry about that incorrect temp reading at startup. You have to remember how close this sensor is to your Radiator. Mine will also read about 15*F higher after having parked the truck for 3-4 hours. Drive it about 1 mile, and its back to where it should be.
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
TollKeeper said:
I would not worry about that incorrect temp reading at startup. You have to remember how close this sensor is to your Radiator. Mine will also read about 15*F higher after having parked the truck for 3-4 hours. Drive it about 1 mile, and its back to where it should be.

You are correct, this morning in the garage it read 27 at startup and after a 1 mile drive it went to 16, it's currently 16 out. I didn't know it functions like that. So all is good, I've never really payed attention to the temp before.

Thanks.
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR
There is a little-known fact hidden in the shop manual (not discussed at all in the owner's manual) that the outside ambient temp display doesn't update if you're going under some speed like 15 MPH. I drive for HOURS on trails in 4LO under 15 MPH, and just got used to not knowing the outside temp. The behavior at start-up where it displays the temp when you shut it down for a short while is also discussed. I'd post it but I'm not near my shop manuals at the moment. Another case where the designers didn't want to generate questions from inexperienced owners about well-known issues like the effect of heat soaking.
 

am-radio

Member
Apr 24, 2012
178
Bumping an old thread. My truck is currently reading 0 Celsius when it's about 15 outside. Just started today. Can I just try a reset by pressing the three buttons, or has it failed and I need to buy a new one?

Where's the best place for Canadians to buy the sensor if I need one?
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
am-radio said:
Bumping an old thread. My truck is currently reading 0 Celsius when it's about 15 outside. Just started today. Can I just try a reset by pressing the three buttons, or has it failed and I need to buy a new one?

Where's the best place for Canadians to buy the sensor if I need one?

I picked it up from the dealer, was only $7.70, and changed it myself.
 

Wooluf1952

Member
Nov 20, 2011
2,663
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
It's one of the few parts that is cheaper from a dealer than most auto parts stores.
 

am-radio

Member
Apr 24, 2012
178
WTF, all day yesterday it showed 0 and possible ice on DIC. Started it up today, and it's back to reading normal. Any idea why?
 

am-radio

Member
Apr 24, 2012
178
Well a month has gone by. I bought a new ambient temperature sensor and the exterior temperature worked fine again. Got in the truck today and I'm reading 0 degrees celsius again. WTF. Why is there always something little going wrong?
 

Denali n DOO

Original poster
Member
May 22, 2012
5,596
am-radio said:
Well a month has gone by. I bought a new ambient temperature sensor and the exterior temperature worked fine again. Got in the truck today and I'm reading 0 degrees celsius again. WTF. Why is there always something little going wrong?

What I notice different is mine and others were getting incorrect temperature readings too high/too low and it being a bad sensor. Your temp always goes to 0* when it fails. Roadie mentioned a possible oxidation in the connector or flakey wiring, did you find anything in the wiring? There must be a reason why yours always goes to 0* when it fails. I wonder what the outside temp would show if the sensor were disconected, 0* maybe?
 

am-radio

Member
Apr 24, 2012
178
I have a new sensor. I pulled the connection apart and cleaned it with electrical contact cleaner. I did the reset and it showed 20 but it was closer to 6 degrees outside. Maybe from touching it. I will see what it reads when I take it for a drive tomorrow. I haven't traced wiring all the way back. Hoping I don't have to.
 

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