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Where is the best location to get the most accurate temperature for a mechancial guage? I'm concerned the location on the side of the block will heat up with the exhaust. So, what do you think of pulling from the intake manifold near the thermostat?

Thanks!
Jim Smith
 

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The best place to place a temp gauge sender is as close to the thermostat as possible. It gives you the most-valuable information at that location. It tells you how accurately the thermostat is operating and the overall efficiency of your cooling system. Any other position such as in the cylinder head is not as important and should be looked at as a secondary area of monitoring.

In other words if you only run one temp gauge, as near to the thermostat is the place to have it.
 

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seems like to meee

if you put the sensor on the head , it seems to read a good bit higher than if you put it by the thermostat. My vette had it there and it would scare you to death going over to 230 and it didn't kick the fan on till 233. I was told by a Chevy tech that it was placed there to function with the fuel management system more accurate so i bet its not the best place to just give an indication what the cooling system is doing.
 

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I've always put mine in the intake by the thermostat housing. Putting it IN the thermostat housing will put it on the "Cold Side" of the thermostat until it opens so you will not get an accurate indication of how hot things are getting BEFORE it opens.

Mounting it in the intake also gets the wires (or tube) away from the headers!!
 

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I have used both places, and what ever someone likes is fine with me.

Personally I prefer to have it in the head (water jacket). I have never had any issues, and I think Chev used that location from about 68 up?

I dont think most "stock" intakes after 68 even had a place for a sending unit untill they started adding a port for various vacuum switches?
 

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If you are running idiot lights, the head is a better location since you want the light to come-on at the first sign of overheating. Idiot lights are calibrated to actuate at higher temps. Mounting the gauge there doesn't give you as much valuable data as mounting it near the thermostat though. When you have the gauge sender mounted near the thermostat, you can better diagnose any cooling problems you might be having. All you'll know by mounting it in the head is that you have a problem. Having both is nice but if you only have one it's better to have it near the thermostat.

Here's a good write-up on the topic:

http://www.madelectrical.com/workshop/water-temp-gauge2.shtml
 

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I've always put mine in the intake by the thermostat housing. Putting it IN the thermostat housing will put it on the "Cold Side" of the thermostat until it opens so you will not get an accurate indication of how hot things are getting BEFORE it opens.
Good point. I had to run mine there cause the port for the water jacket on the intake was being used by the computers (EFI) sensor and I didnt want the extra plumbing for a Tee. The one in my stat housing is just for my idiot gauge. I say idiot gauge cause Im the idiot that has to read it every once in a while. Just a simple street car so running temps with the stat open are fine for me. But... Now you have me thinking. Cause I can watch my temp gauge go up slowly with engine heat when I first start it. So I gotta look at where I actually have it, I know I drilled and tapped the housing. Hmm.JR

Yup, I sure did, I can just see it there. Odd how I can get a gradual increase in temp readings.. Oh, I had to look at a pic cause I cant even open my hood, piled up with junk. Gotta stop using it for a table LOL
 

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Odd how I can get a gradual increase in temp readings..
If your thermostat has the "Bleeder" or a tiny hole in the outer flange to keep from trapping air, it will inevitably allow a SMALL amount of hot water past as well so it might be enough for the gauge to register a bit, but it still won't be totally accurate until the thermostat opens and lets the water start circulating.
Just out of curiosity, it looks like there's a plug in the passenger side of the intake in the water crossover. Why not use that spot?
 

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Just out of curiosity, it looks like there's a plug in the passenger side of the intake in the water crossover. Why not use that spot?
Ok, now finally a question I can positively answer, bout time LOL Cause I didnt know what the heck I was doing :) Plain and simple Hahaha. Im sure in my infinite wisdom (NOT) I had a reason to not use a perfectly good port instead of hacking up a stat housing just to get a screwy temp reading anyway.

But the best I can come up with I just didnt (and still dont) know what Im doing :) Thanks for the help, now I can ditch that ugly chromy looking housing I never liked anyway huh? Yeah, my first car work. Never wrenched on a car before. This thing has been a learning experience from day one.

Wait till you see the suspension work I just got done doing. Oh man!!! Gonna be a field day Im sure. More of my learning while doing. But hey, if I dont come here and post Ill never learn of some better ways of doing things.

And really, this is my first car I have ever worked on so all the stuff I show is just me trying to figure things out.

Thanks for the insight.. JR

You mean that lonely lil plug sitting there with nuthing to do LOL
 

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Two

I have been running two (2) temp gauges in my car for years. I run an Electric type gauge in the intake next to the Thermostat housing. Then I have a mechanical type gauge in the drivers side cylinder head.

The gauge in the Intake reads 180 degrees. The gauge in the head reads 170 degrees. There is ten (10) degrees difference all the time.

Hope this helps.

Bryan
 
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