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2001 Kia Sportage
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
been trying to get my Sportage (2001) to pass emissions and I keep getting the 128 code (check engine light) The sport has a new radiator (6 months ago)
new water pump (3 months ago) new coolant and thermostat. Also put a new
heat sensor (little square one on the thermostat housing) The thermostat is rated for 192 which is what the specs show from AutoZone, I asked for a 195
thermostat and he said Kia doesn't give them any specs for 195. So....what
would be a part # for a thermostat that will give me a temp rating of 195.
Would another type car thermostat fit it if it was a 195?
Gotta get it to pass emissions, it runs good, doesn't smell or smoke and its not
like I'm driving a rundown wornout old car, just barely has 94,000 miles on it
and I expect it to last me at least until 200,000 miles.
I could certainly use some help sorting this problem out.
 

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10 Optima LX, 07 Rondo EX, 89 Chevy C1500
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1,410 Posts
Make sure you have a perfect 50/50 coolant mix. This made a difference on the old Sportages.

Is the fan clutch working properly?
 

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Caribou, Otter, Buffalo
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2,692 Posts
P0128 - Coolant Thermostat (Coolant Temperature Below Thermostat Regulating Temperature)

This code pertains to the sensor which sends data to the ECU, it requires >170* to permit the Computer to attempt CL (closed loop), the emission system will run in limp mode until then (poor performance/economy). AND MAY ACCELERATE THE CAT's DESTRUCTION (RUNNING RICH).

The sensor you replaced may have been the second sensor which activates the dash gauge/lite..

You need to first verify the engine temp (IR), then connect a LIVE DATA SCANNER (not a code scanner) and verify what temp the ECU is receiving.... Philip
 

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2001 Kia Sportage
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4 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
its possibly the coolant, its not 50/50, more like 75/25 figured that was better in 120 degree temps in the desert, seemed ok for summer. For now the gauge just barely comes off cold driving to work in the mornings (cool mornings, 50ish) but afternoons it runs halfway, the normal limit as the
day has warmed up to 75ish. Almost thinking the new thermostat is faulty and stuck in the open position. Will check into getting a shop to run a LIVE DATA SCANNER on it.
Thank you
 

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Caribou, Otter, Buffalo
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2,692 Posts
The correct method to diagnose the ECT is as follows

After the vehicle has been inactive and the coolant/engine is at ambient temp (measure with an IR thermometer)...

Connect the Live data scanner,
turn the ignition on (no start)
Read the temp for IAT (Input Air Temp)
Read the temp for ECT (engine coolant temp)
These values must be close to the ambient temp (first measurement,IR)
start engine
ECT must start to rise withing 1min,
ECT should attain >170* for PCM/ECU to go CL (closed loop) within a couple of road blocks...
Coolant must remain in the coolant spec range (180-195+) to make the ECU happy...

If the above fails, re/re thermostat..... refill (50/50 mix) and burp cooling system....

Retest to confirm repair..... Philip
 

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Not a fix but it works

First of all this was happening to me in the first 5 miles of driving on a cold start up. My solution worked for me :)

First reset the ECU and turn off the CEL. Then...start the veh in the morning run it about a mile and then turn off the the ignition and restart it.

My theory is that the ECU has given the veh just a limited time to warm up before it sets the CEL to on. In my case obviously not long enough ... So, if you turn it off after a few minutes of warm up and then restart it, the ECU resets and the engine is then warm enough to satisfy the ECU time limit.. so far it works and been working all winter. Might mention .. I did all the thermostat and sensor changes without any results.

I first started having this problem when I removed the mechanical fan and installed an electric fan. Why did I do this? Because the summers in AZ are brutal, I idle it a lot in parking lots when the temp is 110 and I wanted the extra HP.

I put a thermal 210 switch from a Honda Accord in the top of the thermostat housing and used a CD relay from from a golf cart. All has worked well for about the last six months....except for the PO128 problem. Last weekend I remove the fan setup and put the mechanical fan back in thinking the electric fan set up was part of the CEL problem. Unfortunately, it wasn't; the light came back on yesterday. Now I'm tired of this problem and another problem it's giving me and guess I'll sell it .. perhaps, haven't decided. Love it, but it really is a quirky vehicle.

3-14-14 changed temperature sensor in airbox ... problem went away :)
 

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Caribou, Otter, Buffalo
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gizmo,

Great theory, but you wont know if you do not conduct the prescribed diagnostics..

.... Philip
 
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