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What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

This is a discussion on What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor? within the Technical / Maintenance forums, part of the General Discussion category; 1991 Chevy 5.7L 350. There's a temperature sensor/sender on the side of the block which goes to the temp gauge, ...

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    What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?


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    1991 Chevy 5.7L 350. There's a temperature sensor/sender on the side of the block which goes to the temp gauge, and there's a sensor/sender on the front of the intake manifold which goes to the computer. At Rock Auto I found the correct temperature sensor and also the correct sender. They're two different parts with different part numbers, but they look extremely similar. Which one goes where? I need the one that goes onto the manifold (and might have installed the wrong one one the side of the engine block.)

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    i would call the one on the side the sender or sending unit, as it is the one that runs the gauge. the one on the manifold is the engine coolant temperature sensor (ect) that runs to the comp. i'm not 100% on this, but this is the nomenclature that i would use for these two.

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    Sensor is for computer and is smaller diameter.
    89 K3500 RCLB- Fat Snarling RAT..Scat/Eagle/Crower/Crane/Edelbrock/MSD..TBI/EBL/TH400/Dana 60

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    The TBI-era dash gauge sender is smaller than the old style ones and can be hard to tell apart from the one that goes in the intake for the computer.

    Terminology can get confused and gets misused a bunch; "sender" and "sensor" often get interchanged pretty freely.

    The coolant temperature sensor (CTS, also referred to as ECT - engine coolant temperature) goes in the intake manifold next to the thermostat housing, and feeds data to the computer.

    The coolant temperature sender goes in the driver's side head, and feeds signal to the dash gauge.

    Richard

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    I must have installed the correct one in the side of the block, because it registers temperature (albeit slightly inaccurate) on the gauge...right? And also, at Autozone I found a coolant temperature sensor, and a temperature switch. Both look very similar. Which goes where?

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    I must thank that guy for reminding me of smaller sender
    89 K3500 RCLB- Fat Snarling RAT..Scat/Eagle/Crower/Crane/Edelbrock/MSD..TBI/EBL/TH400/Dana 60

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    Re: What's the difference between a coolant temp sender and a coolant temp sensor?

    I have to hook up a sender to my gauge in my 93, the Previous owner swapped the engine from a 4.3 to a 5.7 TBI. I'm assuming the old engine used a cluster with idiot lights because the plug on my harness has just one wire. I have a cluster with gauges in it now and the Water Temp gauge doesn't work.

    Can someone tell me how to wire a two-wire sender? I know the green one goes to the cluster....what about the second wire going to the sender?

    Thanks
    Last edited by 1982VetteDude; 06-21-2010 at 12:06 PM.

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