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Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

 
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Old 20 Sep 2017, 07:20 pm
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Southeast Washington
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Default Overhead console thermometer reads 140 degrees

Hi, I'm hoping that someone here has the experience and knowledge I need. My car is an '03 GT Cruiser, 114,000 miles.

The overhead console thermometer reading seems OK until the car moves, then after a few minutes it goes to 140 degrees and stays there until I turn off the car. Start the car again right away, and the temperature seems normal until the car moves, then after a few minutes it goes to 140 degrees. Repeat. It's definitely not 140 degrees outside! I understand that the temperature is not supposed to change until after the car moves. That much seems OK. But 140 degrees? By the way, the compass works fine.

I changed the ambient temperature sensor, but the problem persists.

My next possible step is to change the console itself.

I ran a console self-check and got the following readings on the console:
P1, P2, 4, P4, P. Not sure what they all mean except that I read that "P" means "pass."

The only other idea I have is that the sensor is picking up the engine heat, but the sensor is located in the correct place between the grill and the radiator. Also, if I restart the car with the engine already warmed up, the thermometer starts out with a cooler temperature, i.e. 49 degrees, then goes back up to 140 after the car moves.

Any ideas? Could the console itself be bad even though the readout says it passed?

Thanks for any help.
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Last edited by CruisinCruiser; 20 Sep 2017 at 07:24 pm. Reason: Clarity
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Old 20 Sep 2017, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

To answer the last question yes..

Also the new sensor you installed may not be good.

The location of the sensor is fine. I even moved mine slightly from the OE location and it works fine. I will say I had the same issue and changed the console which corrected the false readings. But that was on my PT Cruiser and I did not do any diagnostics just knew it was the console..PT Cruiser intuition I suppose?


I also want to add that my temperature reading from a morning start up seems to take about 2-4 minutes before it starts to read the corrected ambients temperatures. I never looked into this as a normal time or not. My other cars outside/inside temperature reading is instant the ignition is on. But then their ECU is a bit more complex then that of a PCM in a PT.
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Last edited by NitroPT; 20 Sep 2017 at 10:33 pm.
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Old 21 Sep 2017, 09:20 am
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Location: Arkansas
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Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

According to the good folks at Chrysler, the 140 degree reading indicates a short or open circuit. Basically, the overhead console is reading 0 or infinity from the sensor circuit. The reason it takes a while to show up is because at first start up, it has to detect movement in the compass over two minutes before it gives a true temperature reading from the sensor.

The short may be in the wiring, overhead console or in the sensor. If the replacement sensor does the same, there's a high probability it's in the wiring or the overhead console. But you can test the ambient air sensor with a multi-meter. Take the sensor indoors and let it reach room temperature under AC at about 68 degrees F. Then measure it with meter set to Kilohoms. The reading should be (9 Kohms to 11 Kohms) or (9000 to 11000 ohms).

This is all covered in Section 8M of the service manual. If you need a copy, you can download it from my Google Drive at this link:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9C...ew?usp=sharing
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Old 21 Sep 2017, 09:21 am
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Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

From shop manual:
"Since the ambient temperature sensor is in close proximity to the radiator, it can pick up engine heat giving a false “high” outside air temperature reading known as “Heat Soak”.
In order to display a more correct outside temperature, the overhead console will not increase the displayed temperature until it detects movement in the compass over a two-minute period, to insure that there is adequate airflow over the sensor.
Movement over a two minute period is best understood as once in the first minute, then some more detected movement in the second minute."

"If the display shows OC (-49° F (-45° C) or SC (140° F (60° C), there is an OPEN or SHORT CIRCUIT and it must be repaired"

"SENSOR CIRCUIT TESTING
(1) Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position. Disconnect and isolate the battery negative cable.
Disconnect the ambient temperature sensor wire harness connector and the compass/temperature display unit wire harness connector.
(2) Connect a jumper wire between the two terminals in the body half of the ambient temperature sensor wire harness connector.
(3) Check for continuity between the sensor return circuit and the ambient temperature sensor signal circuit cavities of the compass/temperature display
unit wire harness connector. There should be continuity.
If OK, go to Step 4. If not OK, repair the open sensor return circuit or ambient temperature sensor signal circuit to the ambient temperature sensor as required.
(4) Remove the jumper wire from the body half of the ambient temperature sensor wire harness connector.
Check for continuity between the sensor return circuit cavity of the compass/temperature display unit wire harness connector and a good ground.
There should be no continuity. If OK, go to Step 5. If not OK, repair the shorted sensor return circuit as required.
(5) Check for continuity between the ambient temperature sensor signal circuit cavity of the compass/ temperature display unit wire harness connector and a good ground. There should be no continuity. If OK, replace the compass/temperature display unit. If not OK, repair the shorted ambient temperature sensor signal circuit as required."
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Old 21 Sep 2017, 05:40 pm
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Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Southeast Washington
Posts: 46
Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

Thank you, all, for the excellent, detailed help. Now I have a very good idea how to proceed and hopefully get this corrected. And thank you, Handy, for the link to the service manual.

Here's to a great forum!

CC
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Old 30 Sep 2017, 05:15 pm
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: plant city fl.
Posts: 73
Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

turn the air on and make sure the cooling fan is on then test drive (with air on) you may be picking up engine temp from the radiator, the sensor for the thermometer is about 4 inches below the lock for the hood, right in front of the radiator.. also,run engine with a/c on and hold your hand in front of the radiator to make sure you don't feel air coming through to wrong way..
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Old 30 Sep 2017, 07:11 pm
Fresh Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Southeast Washington
Posts: 46
Default Re: Overhead console temperature goes to 140 degrees

The issue has been fixed. I thought I would give you an update as to the cause. I'm not a mechanic or electrician, so I hope my layman's explanation makes some sense.

My mechanic tested the circuit from the sensor to the overhead console, and determined that one of the connectors (relays?) in the circuit was bad. It was the one on the drivers side near the left leg. Anyway, he found it, cleaned up the connections (didn't have to replace it), and now the temperature works accurately. He seemed surprised that the relay would have a problem. Happily, there is now no more 140 degree reading which did indicate a problem with the circuit.

I ended up not having to get a different console, and probably didn't need a new sensor. Since we started the diagnostic process by putting in a new sensor, he nicely gave me a break in price on the rest of the fix.

He showed me an electrical diagram of the circuit, and the 3 or 4 relays along the way. He told me the name or number of the one he fixed, but I did not think to make a note of it.

The bottom line is that the outside temperature is working just fine. Thanks to all for your insights and help! Maybe this will help someone else diagnose a similar problem.
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