Ambient Air Temp causes several problems... - 2017+ Chrysler Pacifica Minivan Forums
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-02-2019, 04:21 PM Thread Starter
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Ambient Air Temp causes several problems...

...I think.

On my 2018, in the last several days, with the true temp being from 25-35 degrees F, the outside temp gauge would work for a while, then, erratically, it would drop to -30 or or lower, then just go up and down constantly between 0 and -30 degrees F and then, sometimes up to normal, an even a couple of times, all the way to 70-80 degrees F, before falling to around -30 again.

Then, there are times it will blank out altogether. When the temp blanks out or the reading is below about -20 degrees F, the Auto-Start/Stop warning light comes on and the Service Engine Soon light is set. The next time I start it, the Auto Start/Stop light will be out, but the SES light remains on. If the temp reading drops low again, the Auto- Start/Stop light will come on again.

But wait, there's more- Here's the last crazy tidbit- when the outside temp is going up and down under 0 degrees, the inside heat barely heats, certainly not up to what it is set. However, as soon as the temp approaches the true temp OR (and this is crazy) the temp reading goes out altogether, the heater kicks into normal mode and brings the interior heat up to what it is set at.

I'm guessing a bad sensor (no duh), but as always, these things can also be a wiring issue. I will let you know.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-03-2019, 02:30 AM
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Originally Posted by HoughMade View Post
...I think.

On my 2018, in the last several days, with the true temp being from 25-35 degrees F, the outside temp gauge would work for a while, then, erratically, it would drop to -30 or or lower, then just go up and down constantly between 0 and -30 degrees F and then, sometimes up to normal, an even a couple of times, all the way to 70-80 degrees F, before falling to around -30 again.

Then, there are times it will blank out altogether. When the temp blanks out or the reading is below about -20 degrees F, the Auto-Start/Stop warning light comes on and the Service Engine Soon light is set. The next time I start it, the Auto Start/Stop light will be out, but the SES light remains on. If the temp reading drops low again, the Auto- Start/Stop light will come on again.

But wait, there's more- Here's the last crazy tidbit- when the outside temp is going up and down under 0 degrees, the inside heat barely heats, certainly not up to what it is set. However, as soon as the temp approaches the true temp OR (and this is crazy) the temp reading goes out altogether, the heater kicks into normal mode and brings the interior heat up to what it is set at.

I'm guessing a bad sensor (no duh), but as always, these things can also be a wiring issue. I will let you know.
We had a a similar issue with our van for about a week, but the problem went away before we could get it to the dealership to get it looked at. In our case the HVAC system continued to work fine, but ESS and remote start were both disabled. The issue has been gone for a couple weeks now, but at the time the check engine light was on and codes P0073 (Ambient Air Temperature Sensor Circuit High) and U110E (Lost Ambient Temperature Message) were stored.

According to the service manual, the ambient air temp sensor is located in front of the radiator and removal of the front fascia is required to replace it.

2018 Chrysler Pacifica Touring L 33K miles
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-09-2019, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
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As expected, the dealership determined that the Ambient Temperature Sensor is bad and needs to be replaced. Unfortunately, they have to order the part, so it will be at least another week with the crazy temps, then they will need the van all day.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-11-2019, 11:23 AM
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I think I have the answer for Chrysler parts. They need to send ALL their parts to Amazon. Then all the dealers need to become Prime members. That way the dealers could get the parts in two days instead of a week or two or three or........
vtncus and sjambok like this.

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-11-2019, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
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I think I have the answer for Chrysler parts. They need to send ALL their parts to Amazon. Then all the dealers need to become Prime members. That way the dealers could get the parts in two days instead of a week or two or three or........
Yeah....I thought a week wait for parts was......excessive. Whether through Amazon, Rock Auto or A1 Auto, I have never had to wait that long for parts.
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-16-2019, 10:33 AM Thread Starter
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Yep....a week's wait for parts is too long.

...but it looks like it's going to be longer because a week from the diagnosis, no call that the part is in and no scheduling to fix.
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-18-2019, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Part's not in yet (9 days later), but out of sheer optimism, they scheduled the repair for NEXT Friday.

I really like the van and it doesn't bother me that a sensor would need to be replaced- it happens, but the amount of time this is taking is ridiculous.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-18-2019, 01:39 PM
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I think I have the answer for Chrysler parts. They need to send ALL their parts to Amazon. Then all the dealers need to become Prime members. That way the dealers could get the parts in two days instead of a week or two or three or........
Superb suggestion!

Actually, I'm quite disappointed to hear this. Honda always had the parts to our local dealer in one or two days. Even back many years ago, a replacement transmission arrived for our 1999 Accord in one day. FCA needs to get up on this.

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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-18-2019, 05:35 PM
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Part's not in yet (9 days later), but out of sheer optimism, they scheduled the repair for NEXT Friday.

I really like the van and it doesn't bother me that a sensor would need to be replaced- it happens, but the amount of time this is taking is ridiculous.
As common as this part is in Chrysler/Dodge vehicles, I'm shocked they don't have the part in stock. That would really tick me off.

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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-25-2019, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
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Well, at long last, the van is in to have the sensor replaced.

Ironically, it may be more accurate today than it has been for a while- it's -3 F here.
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