Temp guage issues - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old April 25th, 2015, 02:28 AM
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darren
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Temp guage issues

I have just bought a defender with a 200 conversion out of a disco everything has been done to a high standard using all steve parker parts but im having a issue with the temp guage ive googled it tried a new guage a new sender, tried a guage from a 300tdi defender with matched or what they say is a matched guage, but it still reads nearly in the red I drove this back 240 mile the guage stayed in the same place all the time never went any higher so I know its not overheating it has a 16" kenlowe fan and when that kicks in the guage still doesn't get any lower, my next step now is to find a thermostat housing from a defender with the not so fine thread and use the genuine defender sender or does anyone have another solution? I have run a new wire from guage to sender checked the earths they all fine, I have seen threads on VDO gauges but not sure what one to buy
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  #2  
Old April 25th, 2015, 02:44 AM
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Jim Cheney
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Sounds like the gauge is grounded improperly. When I first did VDOs in my 90, my temperature went up every time I turned on the headlights, or the wipers, etc. if you ground the gauge with its own dedicated wire, the problem will probably go away.
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  #3  
Old April 25th, 2015, 10:06 AM
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Chris Solis
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I went around and around with this. Bench testing the system and then not having it work when I put it in the truck. Finally slapped a VDO mechanical gauge in, no problems or worries since.
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  #4  
Old April 25th, 2015, 10:25 AM
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mark kellgren
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i'm having same issue and i have an electric VDO. just replaced a water pump for no reason after an unnecessary tow. i keep an IR thermometer in my console now to verify issues. Pretty sure my sender went bad. Same issues with a dedicated ground. new vdo sender on the way. Not sure about the LR senders, but there is an ohm chart for vdo senders to be able to confirm the correct ohm reading at any temperature range, which helps with isolating wiring vs sender. i'm going to be straightening it out with the goal being the temp gauge reads the same as the IR guage pointed at the thermostat housing, while engine is at normal temps. the variance becomes more pronounced on my current setup as the temps increase.
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Old April 25th, 2015, 10:26 AM
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shayne young
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I've had this problem before also... Make sure that the gauge has not only a dedicated ground but power also...if it's the last one in the guage waiting you may not be getting a full 12 volts...easy enough to test.. With the guage back showing just take 2 wires directly from the battery and connect to the back of the guage..if your problem is wiring it will read correct, you can swap wires one at a time to know which one is bad... Naturally leave the sender wire connected....from memory there are 2 different senders for the 200 tdi..an early and a late,..not sure if that makes a difference or not..I finished up calling VDO direct and bought a matched guage and sender..
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Old April 25th, 2015, 12:24 PM
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The VDO sender I have has two terminals...one back to the gauge and I guess the other is to a ground...not sure if that is done to avoid ground issues at the threads...
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  #7  
Old April 25th, 2015, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icnsltmfg View Post
The VDO sender I have has two terminals...one back to the gauge and I guess the other is to a ground...not sure if that is done to avoid ground issues at the threads...
That is way better than hoping you get a good ground via the threads that are slathered in anti seize. I have the single contact point sender. So far so good but I'm sure I'll have an issue just like Mark had eventually.
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Old April 25th, 2015, 12:43 PM
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VDO also makes a voltage conditioner module, which will give you steady voltage. You can remove the sender plug the hole and put it in a pan of water. boil it with a camp stove and see what the reading is with the truck running. While your at it, just check the thermostat the same way. I have had them, even when new, only open part way some of the time. The boiling technique also gives you a reference number of what the temp actually is on the gauge.
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  #9  
Old April 25th, 2015, 12:45 PM
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VDO gauges are designed to work with variable voltage.
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Old April 25th, 2015, 12:48 PM
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Indeed some have a regulator built in, some don't and the chip doesn't always work well. I had similar issues with mine in my Vanagon Syncro.
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Old April 25th, 2015, 01:58 PM
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Go mechanical and be happy
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Old April 25th, 2015, 02:12 PM
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mark kellgren
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Solis View Post
Go mechanical and be happy
Personal preference. I installed a mechanical oil pressure gauge in my CJ7 long ago to avoid electrical gremlins and one trip in the CA desert the brass line ruptured (think oil cooler line) and boom i had an engine fire doing 60 mph. I wont use mechanicals ever again. Its just another leak point risk.
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Old April 25th, 2015, 03:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icnsltmfg View Post
The VDO sender I have has two terminals...one back to the gauge and I guess the other is to a ground...not sure if that is done to avoid ground issues at the threads...
I don't know what sender you have but I suspect one lead is for the gauge and the other is for an idiot light.
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  #14  
Old April 25th, 2015, 03:40 PM
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mark kellgren
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimC View Post
I don't know what sender you have but I suspect one lead is for the gauge and the other is for an idiot light.
concur. 2nd is for an idiot/warning light
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Old April 25th, 2015, 03:50 PM
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If it's a floating ground sensor type it will have two wires with one to ground. Guy needs to check the part#
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  #16  
Old April 30th, 2015, 07:21 PM
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mark kellgren
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update on my situation. I had my 110 at the local indy shop to diagnose my overheating, as replacing the temp sender didn't resolve the situation. After sitting overnight, the following AM this past Monday, i went to check the coolant level and the expansion tank was pressurized. I was almost convinced i had a head gasket leak pressurizing the system under boost. Had it towed to the shop. They told me today hg was fine, as is the engine. Turns out last time I had drained and refilled the coolant, I didn't bleed the system right, so i had trapped air in it, and it was created air pockets that was blocking flow and reducing contact surface of heat transfer...causing all these symptoms.

Their recommendation to bleed the system properly is to get the engine up to temp with the cap off so the t-stat can open up, and just let it idle at temp for a while. They call it "heat soaking". Apparently, in that 1 hour heat soak, my system had two big burps and now it's happy. They said burp it "just like a baby".

The fact that I had no issues at URE until the ride back when the temp gauge went crazy makes sense. All the hill climbs and descents worked those air bubble forward to the pump and t-stat housing from the rear area where my heat exchanger and Webasto lines are. If you have accessories tied into your coolant system, take extra care when bleeding the system.

I highly recommend The Import Clinic in Charlotte. They primarily work on rovers and know their stuff.
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  #17  
Old April 30th, 2015, 07:37 PM
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Don't feel bad. On my old Vanagon Syncro, the radiator was in the front and the engine in the rear. So to properly bleed the system, you had to run it on a hill first with the nose up and bleed the radiator, then reverse its orientation and do it with the rear up high, then bleed the engine coolant tower. Sometimes you had to do this two or three times. German engineering...
Don't get me started about the electrical system, Bosch, dumber son of Lucas the luminescent.
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