Re: 180 or 195 T-stat

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Posted by Frankenbiker ( on 03:19:53 01/03/08

In Reply to: 180 or 195 T-stat posted by Guy

What is the general consensus?
: Thanks
: Guy

Depends largely on where you live. If in TX or CA, where summer temps get well into the 100's, and winter temps rarely go much below freezing, the 180 is better, especially if you actually GO somewhere in your truck (versus 3 blocks to the C-store and back).

On the other hand, if you live in the cold/frozen northlands, where it rarely exceeds 90 in the summer, and gets bone-crushing cold in the winter, the 195 is better.

In hot weather, the 180-stat will give you a small but noticeable "safety" margin to stave off overheating, and to reduce knock/pinging under load. The higher ambient temps will allow the engine to get hot enough to burn/boil off the accumulated crud in the engine oil during a normal change interval.

In cold weather, the 180-stat won't allow your engine to get hot enough to burn/boil off the assorted crud, and it may not allow your coolant to get hot enough to keep your windshield thawed in snowy weather, UNLESS you are running with a heavy load. (I'm running into this problem with the Freightliner at the moment.)

As a matter of "policy," I always switched over to 180-stats in my Chevies, because I live in TX, and getting stuck in traffic on a 110 degree day in August is fairly common.

As a general rule, anything over 150-160 will get the engine warm enough to shift the ECM into "closed loop", which enables all the smog-control functions.

The 15 degree difference is merely an academic difference, EXCEPT when in "extreme" conditions. Day-to-day driving should show no difference whatsoever (excepting the gauge reading, of course). Your smog-guy was over-reacting, probably from having received an "attitude adjustment" for not catching bigger "violations" at his shop.


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