How to replace a coolant temperature sensor in a passat

Written by carl pruit
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The Volkswagen Passat has a V-6 engine with a coolant temperature sensor located on top near the back of the engine close the firewall. The temperature sensor allows you to know if the coolant is getting too hot or if there are any problems with the cooling system. You can replace the sensor in less than an hour and save yourself the time and expense of having it done in a shop or having someone else do the repairs.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Standard screwdriver
  • Short handled standard screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Locate the plastic cover that sits over the intake manifold. Find the four plastic screws on the top that hold the cover in place in order to replace the Passat's temperature coolant sensor.

  2. 2

    Turn the plastic screws 1/4 of a turn with a screwdriver and lift the plastic cover off the top of the intake manifold.

  3. 3

    Take the air filter housing off the top of the engine. Detach the mass airflow sensor connector from the filter housing.

  4. 4

    Locate the flex pipe that connects to the intake. Take off the clamp that is holding the flex pipe, prying the pipe away from the plastic intake housing with a screwdriver.

  5. 5

    Find the horseshoe-shaped plastic spring. Use a short handled standard screwdriver to lift the horseshoe spring up about 1/4-inch.

  6. 6

    Locate the temperature sensor that sits below the plastic spring. Lift the sensor up, verifying that the O-ring is still attached to the sensor.

  7. 7

    Disconnect the temperature sensor from the connector. Remove the O-ring from the sensor.

  8. 8

    Place the O-ring on the new temperature sensor and attach the sensor to the connector.

  9. 9

    Lower the horseshoe plastic spring back into place. Reattach the flex pipe to the plastic intake housing.

  10. 10

    Reattach the mass airflow sensor connector to the filter housing. Attach the air filter housing back on top of the engine.

  11. 11

    Set the plastic cover back on top of the Passat's intake manifold and attach by securing the four plastic screws with a screwdriver.

Tips and warnings

  • To avoid burn injuries, let the engine of the Passat cool down before attempting to replace the coolant temperature sensor.

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