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Hi all,

Driving my 1.6 2008 Astra earlier, noted the Engine Electronics warning light come on and stay on. No change in power/performance, engine temp has been fine and overall seems to be running & starting absolutely fine. Using the pedal/key test, have found the code is ECN218214. A quick google suggests that would appear to be the ECT sensor being faulty/short circuiting or the circuit being open..

My first thoughts were to just order a replacement ECT sensor (55353809) for a fiver and switch that over and see if it sorts it. Don't have a tool set to hand, but it looks like a 2 minute swap with a spanner.. Thoughts? Are there any other likely causes of this fault/other places I should be looking - could the wiring/thermostat be faulty..?

(It may be relevant, but a few months ago, I noticed the coolant level was dropping off slowly with no obvious leaks. A bottle of Radweld seemed to sort this out a treat, so I imagine there is a small leak within the radiator somewhere. Might just be coincidence, but thought I'd mention it in case it could be related!).

Ideally need to continue driving it 10-15 miles a day to work whilst waiting to fix it/parts to arrive, but given the normal performance/engine temps I assume that shouldn't be too much of an issue.

Pretty sure it's a Z16XER engine, 65000 miles or so.

Thanks in advance for your advice/suggestions!
 

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Hy, you have a few sensors for coolant on that engine. Check the wiring first? Is the fault intermitent? What is coolant temperature in the hidden menu. How long it takes to warm up?
 
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That code is usually down to broken wires or corrosion at the rad temp sensor plug end
there was a bulletin about it,(they made the harnesses too short)
 
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Thanks guys, will check the wires first then!

Am I going to be able to readily see these wires without removing several components, or is it a garage job to have a proper look at them?

If I can see them, whereabouts should I be looking?

Guessing the wiring is still a relatively easy fix that can be done by a local garage? (if that is the culprit!)
 

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You can get at it from underneath (easier if it's on ramps) it's in the side of the rad just above the drain c0ck
 

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Cts rarely go bad on that engine if at all, wires is another story. When cts go bad ussually it does not put a code just reports temperature off to ecu for example instead of 80 celsius 70 or 90...

Leak can be seen leaving pink residues if corect coolant is used ( dexo cool long life in your case) a slight drop all of a sudden in coolant( about 10mm on exapansion bottle) i noticed 9/10 indicates that thermostat went and stuck open. Obviously if it keeps going down.... Is something else... A leak most likely.

Look out for wires that insulation is cracked even tho is not touching anything on the 1.6 seems to trigger happy codes in the ecu.
 

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Hy, you have a few sensors for coolant on that engine. Check the wiring first? Is the fault intermitent? What is coolant temperature in the hidden menu. How long it takes to warm up?
Coolant Temp is reading at 90C (this was after a 30 minute drive in stop/start traffic, forgot to check before I started it up), the light is on constantly, but still no noticable change to performance/fuel economy.

Don't have access to a ramp/a decent jack so will pop it to a decent local garage to ask them to have a look at the wiring/check it with a multimeter. Fingers crossed it's a simple fix!

Do the codes reset every time the ignition is switched off or do they need to be reset manually? - just intrigued as to whether it is possibly just an erroneous code, that may not reappear if reset... (probably wishful thinking!)
 

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Coolant Temp is reading at 90C (this was after a 30 minute drive in stop/start traffic, forgot to check before I started it up), the light is on constantly, but still no noticable change to performance/fuel economy.

Don't have access to a ramp/a decent jack so will pop it to a decent local garage to ask them to have a look at the wiring/check it with a multimeter. Fingers crossed it's a simple fix!

Do the codes reset every time the ignition is switched off or do they need to be reset manually? - just intrigued as to whether it is possibly just an erroneous code, that may not reappear if reset... (probably wishful thinking!)
Check your wiring first, but in the hidden menu you see only one temperature. You have a radiator coolant temp and is another just before thermostat, and if that temp that you read is acurate sounds like your thermostat is open that engine likes to hoover around 108 and radiator stays around 90-95.

You can do a simple check for the thermostat yourself, from cold start in 5 minutes of idle should be already close to 100 or just over and radiator top cold, few minutes later radiator should start turning hot .... If your displayed temp after 7-10 minutes of idle is around 80 chances are thermostat is stuck open. At this point you really need to confirm the readings of both temp sensors with something like op-com that will display both sensors readings.

I noticed that this 1.6 engines trigger various codes for coolant system when thermostat is duff...

As i stated before check wiring first, you do not need a ramp, even putting drivers wheel on kerb and the other down gives you enough acces to check by the radiator stopcock sensor, unplug the electrical, check its condition for oxidation, brittle wires.... After have a look between battery and engine, under coil pack plug, thermostat is located in that place, found in some instances wiring rubbing against something, you will notice a sensor before the thermostat housing and one on the housing... The thermostat housing is the last bit before the rubber hose leading to radiator on the passenger side.
 
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Check your wiring first, but in the hidden menu you see only one temperature. You have a radiator coolant temp and is another just before thermostat, and if that temp that you read is acurate sounds like your thermostat is open that engine likes to hoover around 108 and radiator stays around 90-95.

You can do a simple check for the thermostat yourself, from cold start in 5 minutes of idle should be already close to 100 or just over and radiator top cold, few minutes later radiator should start turning hot .... If your displayed temp after 7-10 minutes of idle is around 80 chances are thermostat is stuck open. At this point you really need to confirm the readings of both temp sensors with something like op-com that will display both sensors readings.

I noticed that this 1.6 engines trigger various codes for coolant system when thermostat is duff...

As i stated before check wiring first, you do not need a ramp, even putting drivers wheel on kerb and the other down gives you enough acces to check by the radiator stopcock sensor, unplug the electrical, check its condition for oxidation, brittle wires.... After have a look between battery and engine, under coil pack plug, thermostat is located in that place, found in some instances wiring rubbing against something, you will notice a sensor before the thermostat housing and one on the housing... The thermostat housing is the last bit before the rubber hose leading to radiator on the passenger side.
Thanks very much for your help/advice! Will take a look at the wiring as best I can and try what you suggested regarding the thermostat/running it at idle etc.
 

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On the rad sensor you'll need to cut the insulation covering the two wires,the break is usually in the first few inches before the plug,they also introduced a modified sensor with gold plated terminals to be changed at the same time although i've not found this is always needed,
 
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Check your wiring first, but in the hidden menu you see only one temperature. You have a radiator coolant temp and is another just before thermostat, and if that temp that you read is acurate sounds like your thermostat is open that engine likes to hoover around 108 and radiator stays around 90-95.

You can do a simple check for the thermostat yourself, from cold start in 5 minutes of idle should be already close to 100 or just over and radiator top cold, few minutes later radiator should start turning hot .... If your displayed temp after 7-10 minutes of idle is around 80 chances are thermostat is stuck open. At this point you really need to confirm the readings of both temp sensors with something like op-com that will display both sensors readings.
So tried having a look under the bottom at the wires, couldn't really see a huge amount.

Tried to start from idle and had these results (which seems to suggest the thermostat may well be open as it's not warming up at all quickly!)
Cold - 15C
3 Minutes Idle - 40C
5 Minutes Idle - 49C
7 Minutes Idle - 56C
10 Minutes Idle - 67C
At this point I started driving, and 5 minutes later had got up to about 88/89C where it pretty much stayed the whole way home. Dropped to 86/87 on the Motorway, got to 92 very briefly in traffic, but never really over 90.

Is it going to be at all easy to 'see' if the thermostat is open/if coolant is entering the radiator from startup?

Also, what's the labour time on replacing a thermostat if it transpires to be that? (not really mechanically savvy enough to brave trying it myself!!)
 

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You can't see it because it's inside the engine.
 

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So tried having a look under the bottom at the wires, couldn't really see a huge amount.

Tried to start from idle and had these results (which seems to suggest the thermostat may well be open as it's not warming up at all quickly!)
Cold - 15C
3 Minutes Idle - 40C
5 Minutes Idle - 49C
7 Minutes Idle - 56C
10 Minutes Idle - 67C
At this point I started driving, and 5 minutes later had got up to about 88/89C where it pretty much stayed the whole way home. Dropped to 86/87 on the Motorway, got to 92 very briefly in traffic, but never really over 90.

Is it going to be at all easy to 'see' if the thermostat is open/if coolant is entering the radiator from startup?

Also, what's the labour time on replacing a thermostat if it transpires to be that? (not really mechanically savvy enough to brave trying it myself!!)
As you done the checks radiator should stay cold till about 100 celsius mark so if your dash hidden menu shows anything up to 80 celsius even 90... You should feel the top of radiator or the hose by the battery leading to radiator staying cold about 20 Celsius....

 

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He was asking if he could see the thermostat working and you can't on any engine.
 

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Hm ok thanks guys!

Will have a feel of the radiator/hose idling from cold, but either way will need to pop it to a garage. At least I have a better idea of where the likely problem lies - having had a google, it seems as if coolant can slowly leak from the thermostat housing when it's failing (which maybe explains why I have/had a slow leak, but not sure as Radweld seemed to fix the source of it).

With the thermostat being within the engine, is it going to be a long job to get to/replace? I've seen that the Thermostat GM part with housing is £30-50 depending where you look, and the sensors a fiver or so, but like all things I guess the labour could be costly? Simple as draining the coolant and a few screws, or is it much more involved than that (just so I know how big a hit on the pocket I am looking at!)
 

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I wil post some pictures tonight, but is more a mater of getting stuff out if the way and unpluging electric plugs to get to it has 4 etorx 10 head bolts, takes about 1 hour... Obviously coolant is needed either when replacing thermostat or sensors.

Is rather easy but... For me, for some people migt be moore complecated depending on skill level and tools at hand.

I was looking over some live data pictures i took and from cold start ambient outside temp of 13 took about 10 minutes of idle to reach 108 celsius and this was op com reading, in the same time the radiator temperature stayed at 20 celsius all the time till engine got to 109; after thermostat started to let coolant through radiator and radiator tamp slowly rised 30... 40... Etc till it reached 95 and fan kicked in...

Not if it helps but if you manage to make your opcom work...
 
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