• Register Today It's free! This box and some ads will disappear once registered!

  • Holiday Special! - 2 for 1 Elite Explorer sale!

    Right now you can purchase an Elite Explorer membership for $20 and receive a two year membership!

    Click Here to start your membership and get rid of the ads!

How to: Replace 3rd Gen Ambient Air Temperature Sensor


BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
This topic comes up quite a bit, especially in the winter months. I took some pictures today to show someone in another thread where it was located and how to replace it. That led to this write up. I hope this will make short work out of changing the sensor. I got my sensor from the dealer for around $40.00

Be sure to check out my other write ups:

How To: Replace Blend Door Actuator in 3rd Gen Ex

How To: Remove/Replace 3rd Gen Door Panel

How To: Install Signal Mirrors On 3rd Gen Ex

How To: Restore Faded, Yellowing Headlights

How To: Replace Multifunction Switch in 3rd Gen Ex

How To: Paint Rear Pillar Trim

How To: Test a Relay

How To: Remove/Replace 3rd Gen Center Console



Tools/Parts Required

Slotted Screwdriver
Phillips Screwdriver

ToolsRequired.jpg


New Ambient Air Temperature Sensor
AmbientTempSensor.jpg


NOTE: Some have mentioned that the sensor is on the driver's side. My sensor is on the passenger's side. The replacement should be the same for either side.

1. Remove Grille

1.a. Remove plastic screws.

1aRemovePlasticScrewsCustom.jpg


1.b. Use Phillips screwdriver to remove screws. BE CAREFUL NOT TO BREAK THE SCREWS!

1bUsePhillipsToRemoveScrewsCustom.jpg


1.c. Remove plastic pins.

1cRemovePlasticPinsCustom.jpg


1.d. Use slotted screwdriver to remove pins.

1dUseSlottedToRemovePinsCustom.jpg


1.e. Lift pin up with screwdriver. BE CAREFUL NOT TO BREAK THE PINS!

1eLiftPinUpCustom.jpg


1.f. Remove screw holders and pin holders. Use slotted screwdriver to pry both screw holders and pin holders up and out.

1fUseSlottedToRemoveHoldersCustom.jpg


1.g. Lift grille up and out.

1gLiftGrilleUpandOutCustom.jpg


2. Disconnect/Replace Sensor

2.a. View of sensor with grille removed.

2aViewofSensorwithGrilleRemovedCustom.jpg


2.b. This panel can be removed for better access. I did not need to remove this panel! The red arrows indicate the pins to remove in order to remove this panel.

2bRemovethispanelforAccessCustom.jpg


2.c. Side view of connector tab. The sensor is blurry in this picture but the arrow indicates the connector tab.

2cSidePositionofConnectorCustom.jpg


2.d. Top view of connector tab. The sensor is hard to see in this picture. If you look down from the top you will see the connector tab.

2dTopPositionofConnectorCustom.jpg


2.e. Lift the connector tab up and pull sensor in direction of arrows to remove sensor.

2ePullSensorOutCustom.jpg


2.f. Push new sensor into place. Line up new sensor with the connector and gently push into place. You should hear the connector tab click. Make sure the sensor is fully seated.

2fSnapNewSensorIntoPlaceCustom.jpg


3. Replace Grille

3.a. Place bottom of grille in first. Make sure the tabs indicated by the red arrows are lined up properly.

3aPositionBottomOfGrilleCustom.jpg


3.b. Push top of grille toward vehicle. Make sure the holes are lined up.

3bLineuptopholesCustom.jpg


3.c. Insert screw holders and pin holders. Push holders into place.

3cReplaceHoldersCustom.jpg


3.d. Push plastic pins into place. Make sure they are fully seated.

3dPushPinsIntoPlaceCustom.jpg


3.e. Use Phillips screwdriver to replace screws. DO NOT OVERTIGHTEN OR THE PLASTIC SCREWS WILL BREAK!

3eReplaceScrewsCustom.jpg


4. You Are Finished!

4.a. Enjoy a Cold Beverage of Your Choosing!!!

14cColdone.jpg


Thanks for looking in! :biggthump
 


Join the Elite Explorers for $20 per year. Gets rid of the ads! New $5 per month "try out" option.

Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




forcemac

New Member
Joined
December 18, 2010
Messages
27
Reaction score
0
Did mine today along with one wheel bearing....i did the temp sensor this morning in the parking lot waiting for the hobby shop to open...it really only takes about 10 min.....although I cussed a bit because the temp was stuck at 50 prior to the replacement...what are chances it would be exactly 50 when I changed it .....it was...didn't know it was fixed until I drove home after the bearing change....
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Good deal. Yeah it's a pretty quick fix. In and out! :thumbsup:
 




kdoggy

Member
Joined
February 16, 2011
Messages
87
Reaction score
0
City, State
Grand Rapids, MI
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 Explorer XLT 4x4
Dumb question! :)

What exactly is this sensor for? Is this the one that tells me how cold it is outside? I was noticing by my tach it says something like ---F, like the sensor is not working.

Can I assume this is the sensor for this?
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Dumb question! :)

What exactly is this sensor for? Is this the one that tells me how cold it is outside? I was noticing by my tach it says something like ---F, like the sensor is not working.

Can I assume this is the sensor for this?

Yes, that display is for the outside temp. Mine was reading in the 50's when it was in the 20's so I swapped it out and it works perfectly now. It was very cold when I snapped this photo and the readout was spot on:

16BelowCustom.jpg
 




kdoggy

Member
Joined
February 16, 2011
Messages
87
Reaction score
0
City, State
Grand Rapids, MI
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 Explorer XLT 4x4
Nice! I'll have to fix this. I'm cheap though so I'll have to go hit the junk yard and grab a couple of these sensors lol!

Most of the time they tell me to just "take" these types of items. Free is good.
 




Cjpooch

Member
Joined
December 1, 2010
Messages
85
Reaction score
0
City, State
Saginaw, MI
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 Ford Explorer XLT
Great write up Rondo. Then again all your write ups are. I'll have to bookmark this in case I ever need to replace mine. This should be a sticky if it isn't already.
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Nice! I'll have to fix this. I'm cheap though so I'll have to go hit the junk yard and grab a couple of these sensors lol!

Most of the time they tell me to just "take" these types of items. Free is good.

Great write up Rondo. Then again all your write ups are. I'll have to bookmark this in case I ever need to replace mine. This should be a sticky if it isn't already.

Thanks guys!! Just trying to give back to the forum! :D
 




jakedrew

Active Member
Joined
August 9, 2009
Messages
524
Reaction score
1
City, State
wisconsin
Year, Model & Trim Level
04 xlt
thanks for the write up. Hope I dont have to do it.
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4




High_Order1

Active Member
Joined
January 31, 2007
Messages
497
Reaction score
2
City, State
near Oak Ridge, TN
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Jack Bauer Edition
Wow! Much better write up than mine. Had I seen this, I wouldn't have bothered!

I will say I'm glad to see I wasn't the only one that this affected, though...

Shawn
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Wow! Much better write up than mine. Had I seen this, I wouldn't have bothered!

I will say I'm glad to see I wasn't the only one that this affected, though...

Shawn

You sir are welcome!! :D:thumbsup:
 




joejv4

New Member
Joined
January 6, 2011
Messages
16
Reaction score
0
City, State
Upstate NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
05 Explorer XLT
Really nice writeup - my wife's '05 Explorer is reading 15-20 higher than actual outside temps, and she wants me to fix it. Looks like one that is actually not too bad to do. Thanks for the great writeup and nice job with the accompanying photos. Looks like you've got a nice coat of road salt - gotta be from a northern climate like me (the -16 deg is another clue on that account)
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Really nice writeup - my wife's '05 Explorer is reading 15-20 higher than actual outside temps, and she wants me to fix it. Looks like one that is actually not too bad to do. Thanks for the great writeup and nice job with the accompanying photos. Looks like you've got a nice coat of road salt - gotta be from a northern climate like me (the -16 deg is another clue on that account)

Plenty of salt up here brother!! Good luck with the fix!!

Please keep us posted as feedback helps others reading this post looking for a fix to the same or similar issue!
 




nickf

New Member
Joined
November 1, 2011
Messages
1
Reaction score
0
Year, Model & Trim Level
2004 Explorer XLS
Is the temperature gauge standard on all Explorers???? I dont think i have one on mine.... 2004 XLS.:(
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Is the temperature gauge standard on all Explorers???? I dont think i have one on mine.... 2004 XLS.:(

Welcome aboard!! :salute:

I don't believe it is standard. I don't know if it was available on the XLS.

Follow the instructions to locate the sensor. If there is a sensor there, then I would say you have it. Not trying to be a smarta$$.

Hope this helps out. :):thumbsup:

Please keep us posted as feedback helps others reading this post looking for a fix to the same or similar issue!
 




High_Order1

Active Member
Joined
January 31, 2007
Messages
497
Reaction score
2
City, State
near Oak Ridge, TN
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Jack Bauer Edition
Well,

the computers use that sensor to determine a few things, so I am betting the odds are good that it is there. If you have a computer display, you have the outdoor temp display. Also, seems like there may have been an overhead console or rear view mirror display, too. If you don't have these, you won't have the display.

Shawn
 




skysthelymyt

Active Member
Joined
September 29, 2011
Messages
124
Reaction score
0
City, State
Florence, SC
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 Explorer
Can one of these sensors be added to a trim model that does not have this feature?
Is it just the sensor, wires, and the specific instrument cluster for it? Or is there more to it than that?
 




BigRondo

USMC 1371
Elite Explorer
Moderator Emeritus
Joined
February 15, 2010
Messages
7,882
Reaction score
14
City, State
Worcester, MA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT V6 4x4
Can one of these sensors be added to a trim model that does not have this feature?
Is it just the sensor, wires, and the specific instrument cluster for it? Or is there more to it than that?

Sorry, I have no idea how much would have to exist from the factory in order to make this work. Maybe someone with more knowledge than me will chime in.

Sorry I couldn't be more help.
 


Join the Elite Explorers for $20 per year. Gets rid of the ads! New $5 per month "try out" option.

Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.




jpw01

New Member
Joined
July 28, 2011
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
City, State
MN
Year, Model & Trim Level
02 Ltd. V8
Has anyone found any other solution to this improper temp problem, ie cleaning the sensor or cleaning/reseating the contacts at the sensor, etc? Mine just started reading about 10F high for no apparent reason. It actually displays the correct temp upon a cold startup in the AM, but once I start driving and the engine heats up, the display temp climbs 10-12F. I'm sure there is a bit of salt film on it.

Thanks for the info!
 




Top