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auto tranny temp gauge

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by ABES, Sep 20, 2007.

  1. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    has anybody ever installed one of these??? i would really like to get one to monitor the temp of the trans. how hard are they to install??? i dont plow with this truck but when hauling heavy loads it would be nice to have.
     
  2. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    A trans temp gage is an excellent idea on any truck that gets worked at all. They're not to terribly hard to install but if you want the best overall temp reading I'd highly recommend installing the sender directly in the pan rather than using one of the available "tee" fittings that splice into the cooler line. It's more work that way but well worth the advantages of getting an accurate reading. The best way to install the sender is to drop the pan and weld a threaded bung in the pan that will allow you to thread the sender directly into the pan. You can use and electric or mechanical gage, either will do the job just fine. I've been running trans temp gages on every truck I've ever had as I feel it give's you a "heads up" ahead of time before you cook the trans.That way you can ease up on the truck when necessary, thus keeping the trans temp in check to prevent damage. Cheap insurance in my book.
     
  3. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    thanks B&B. do you know of a company that sells a kit for this or do i have to buy all the pieces seperatley?

    thanks for the help.
     
  4. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    I like to use Autometer brand gages.They have a trans temp gage that includes the sender and a decent set of instructions. You'll just need a gage cup to mount it in if your not gonna mount it directly in the dash somewhere and you'll need a few feet of 16 gage wire to wire it up. You'll also need an 1/8 inch iron pipe bung from the local hardware store to weld into the trans pan. When your ready, I can walk you through the install.
     
  5. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

  6. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Yep, in fact that's the exact gage I have in my own truck!
     
  7. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    thanks for the help B&B. i plan on ordering one of these in the next couple months. i think i have been spending a little too much at summitracing lately hopefully it snows like crazy this winter, so i can get my truck just the way i want it.
     
  8. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Glad to help bud, and don't worry I think we're all guilty of spending too much money at one time or another in anticipation of a good winter..:D
     
  9. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    Well 8 months later i finally got around to ordering a gauge and pod lol. Im looking forword to getting this installed!
     
  10. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Better late than never at all ABES.

    Trans temp monitoring should be a basic function on any truck thats worked hard or for long hours. It's been proven time and time again that a simple $50 temp gage can save a $2000 transmission. :)
     
  11. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    Thats exactly it. This is the time of the year my truck works the most, hauling concrete blocks, pavers, dirt, gravel, mulch etc. I will be hauling my friends jeep 500 miles to an offroad park soon and it will probly be 90+ degrees outside I definately want to be able to monitor the temp for that.
     
  12. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,734

    I have an autometer 100-250 one and right now it reads about 140 all the time. We welded a fitting directly in the center of the rear of the pan then threaded in the sensor.
     
  13. highlander316

    highlander316 Senior Member
    Messages: 578

    B&B, at what temp should I be worried? I had the tranny at near 200degrees one day while pulling a load of mulch up a hill. Usually stays in the 150degrees range while pulling the mowing trailer around.
     
  14. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    For a long trans life, do what you can to keep it under 200*. An occasional situation where it may get up to 200* or even a little more won't make a major impact on it's longevity, but the cooler you can keep it under constant conditions, the more life you should get from it. Heat it what kills the vast majority of auto transmissions...

    General rule of thumb:

    160*-180* is ideal
    200*-210*-- it's time to ease up on it a bit.

    Never operate it continuously if it gets over 230*-240*-- If it gets that hot...stop whatever your doing with it and let it cool down.

    All of these temp examples are with the temp sender IN THE PAN. If your reading it somewhere else, these temp numbers are null and void.
     
  15. ServiceOnSite

    ServiceOnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 935

    im just wondering were do the stock trans temp gauge get its input from and what the damage temp would be? mines never been over 150
     
  16. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    The stock temp senders are located in the internal pressure switch assembly on the valve body (inside the trans).

    The "damage temp" isn't really a specific number. The amount of life you remove from a trans is dependent more on how long it's operated at an elevated temp.

    Example: 250 deg is definitely too hot for an extended period of time, but wouldn't be a major catastrophe if you had it there a time or two...and for only a short period of time.

    A more important number is the continuous running temp...which would be the temp where the trans runs the majority of the time during work/hard usage of the truck. If the continuous temp stays around 200 deg or less your not going to make a major impact on its life.
     
  17. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    Well Ive got all the wiring done and the gauge installed now I just need to weld in the sender bung. B&B do you know where I should weld in the bung? Should I weld it in the same place as Mark did? He has his mounted on the back of the pan in the center. Should it be mounted differently on a 4L80E?
     
  18. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Basically you can mount it anywhere in the pan where you have the external clearance for it.

    On the left side, or in the rear (like Mark did his) is the best places since it'll keep the sender away from the majority of exhaust heat
     
  19. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    Allright sounds simple enough. Any idea how much ATF I will need when I drop the pan?? I am not planning on changing the filter as it only has a few thousand miles on it.

    Thanks again B&B
     
  20. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Have about 5 or 6 quarts on hand. That'll be enough to cover it even if some fluid drains from the converter while the pan's off (which they usually will).