ECT and ACT

TorgSurv

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Quick tip: If the plug doesn't fit, you might have the wrong part.

I had a check engine light on my '91, and pulled the diagnostic code 116 for Engine Coolant Temperature (ECT) sensor out of range. I decided to check to make sure the sensor was plugged in properly, no pinched or frayed wires, etc., and I found that the plug (round with one square corner) was a little loose, and slid off of the sensor way easier than expected.
20201222_152436.jpg
On closer inspection, I realized that the plug appeared to have the square corner on the wrong side based on the location of the lock tabs. Also, it appeared that the plug had been notched in order to enable it to fit onto the sensor.
20201222_152446.jpg20201222_152417.jpg
After some searching through images of various sensors on multiple parts store websites, I began to suspect that the sensor installed was actually an Air Charge Temperature (ACT) sensor, not an ECT!
Sure enough, after removal, this is what the ACT looks like:
20201222_153612.jpg20201222_153642.jpg
Compare that to the ECT:
20201222_152524.jpg20201222_152505.jpg

I installed the ECT, and the plug fit right on and locked in the way it's supposed to.
20201222_154006.jpg20201222_154019.jpg

I topped off the coolant and started it up. Check engine light is off, the engine started easier, and runs smoother. It's a good day!

Another quick tip: Never assume that the previous owner had any clue what they were doing when maintaining or repairing the Bronco.
 
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Deano Bronc

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Quick tip: If the plug doesn't fit, you might have the wrong part.

I had a check engine light on my '91, and pulled the diagnostic code 116 for Engine Coolant Temperature (ECT) sensor out of range. I decided to check to make sure the sensor was plugged in properly, no pinched or frayed wires, etc., and I found that the plug (round with one square corner) was a little loose, and slid off of the sensor way easier than expected.
View attachment 6771
On closer inspection, I realized that the plug appeared to have the square corner on the wrong side based on the location of the lock tabs. Also, it appeared that the plug had been notched in order to enable it to fit onto the sensor.
View attachment 6770View attachment 6772
After some searching through images of various sensors on multiple parts store websites, I began to suspect that the sensor installed was actually an Air Charge Temperature (ACT) sensor, not an ECT!
Sure enough, after removal, this is what the ACT looks like:
View attachment 6776View attachment 6775
Compare that to the ECT:
View attachment 6774View attachment 6773

I installed the ECT, and the plug fit right on and locked in the way it's supposed to.
View attachment 6777View attachment 6778

I topped off the coolant and started it up. Check engine light is off, the engine started easier, and runs smoother. It's a good day!

Another quick tip: Never assume that the previous owner had any clue what they were doing when maintaining or repairing the Bronco.
I don't know of a better feeling than finding an issue, changing out the part and having it work. A sense of accomplishment is the same feeling as kids waking up Christmas morning. :)
 

Bronc96

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I don't know of a better feeling than finding an issue, changing out the part and having it work. A sense of accomplishment is the same feeling as kids waking up Christmas morning. :)
Well said Deano! Now if I could just figure out why the ABS light is on in my 96 Bronc...project for another day I suppose. :p
 

TorgSurv

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Well said Deano! Now if I could just figure out why the ABS light is on in my 96 Bronc...project for another day I suppose. :p
Did you scan the codes yet? Good news for you is the 96 has OBD-II, usually easier to diagnose problems (if you have or can borrow a scanner, that is).
 

Bronc96

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Did you scan the codes yet? Good news for you is the 96 has OBD-II, usually easier to diagnose problems (if you have or can borrow a scanner, that is).
I have a cheap scan tool but don't think it reads the ABS codes. I tried jumping with a paperclip and counting the flashes but gave up. The truck does not get driven much so I am wondering if a bad wheel sensor but hard to tell.
 
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Bronc96

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I guess what I could to do is have my local shop scan it to find out what has failed then I can replace myself if not too complicated.
 
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