Pricier thermostat worth it? - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 05-22-2014
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Icon5 Pricier thermostat worth it?

I want to replace the thermostat. I have changed the fan clutch due to overheating (and it is good now), but thought I might as well change the thermostat once I am at it.

The problem is... Most parts stores have it for ~$150... but then I found this one for $27.99 that says it is the "exact fit": ( Stant Xactstat™ Thermostat Including Housing, 180 Degrees Fahrenheit 48708: Find car thermostats from the experts at Advance Auto Parts. ).

The same store has the one for ~$151.99 ( Stant Xactstat™ Thermostat Including Housing and Sensor, 208 Degrees Fahrenheit 48672: Buy thermostats from the experts at Advance Auto Parts. ). which seems to have the connector the cheap one does not. So the question is...

What functionality will I lose by getting the cheaper one?
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Old 05-22-2014
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I'm not entirely sure why it is so much, but on my last Chevy Blazer, I had to replace the thermostat, and it cost me about $20 for a new one at Autozone. Not sure if Rangers are that much more money or what, but $150 seems a bit much to me.

On a second look, are you wanting to replace the thermostat housing as well?
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Old 05-22-2014
Scy Scy is offline
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What you have in the electrical connection is a heater that partially opens to give better mpg. So Ford says.
If you use the one without the connector you will have to put a resistor in the connector from the engine. Another Ranger owner did just that, but I don't recall which resistor he used. You have to fool the computer into thinking you are still using oem or you will get a CEL. Try google for that thread. I can't find it right now.

BTW I used a Motorad 604-208 Thermostat for $79 from Amazon. It is the electronic type and works fine. Next time I will use the non electronic type with the resistor trick and see how that works out.
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Old 05-22-2014
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Thanks,
Scy, did you use the Motorad thermostat on your Ranger? at $79 it is pretty tempting! The resistor thing sounds like something I wouldn't do, so the Motorad mmight be what I end up using.

Thanks again!
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Old 05-23-2014
Scy Scy is offline
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Yea, I used the Motorad on my Ranger. Fit like a glove. I got the highest heat rating I could get. It seems the Duratec loves to run hot.

If you are gonna use Amazon for parts make sure you cross check parts numbers at some place like Rock Auto. Amazon has good prices, but their specific vehicle parts finder sucks. Sometimes if you put in a search at Amazon for, say, a "2003 Ford Ranger 2.3 water pump" it will give you a completely wrong part. I always double/triple check my parts numbers at various places and never end up with a non fitting part.

Your sig doesn't tell me what year or engine you have, so go to Rock Auto and find the part that fits YOUR vehicle. After you get a proper part number just do a google search for the best price. All I ever use local stores for is emergency parts. Online is nearly always half what the locals charge for the same thing.

For me a 208 degree thermostat is oem. Try to stay oem temp.

Last edited by Scy; 05-23-2014 at 03:31 AM.
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Old 05-23-2014
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Yes, 208degF is what you want.
Most Ford engines use 192-195degF t-stats

180degF will slowly ruin the engine.

A working thermostat doesn't cause an engine to run Hot, it makes it run in the "normal" temp range for best MPG and best lubrication, for current gas engines that is 195-220degF.

While a 180degF t-stat may sound better, it isn't, your MPG will go down and contaminants in the oil won't be burned off as well.
SAE, the guys that rate and test motor oil found contaminants(water/blow-by) start burning off at about 160degF(coolant temp), but at 190+degF contaminants are burned off faster and better.

T-stat sets Minimum operating temp, it's job is to get engine to 200degF(in this case) ASAP, and then keep engine at 200degF.
So if you are driving in a Minnesota winter at -20deg the t-stat may never open trying to keep engine temp at 200degF
With a 180degF t-stat engine and heater would be below operating temp.

If you are driving thru Death valley in the summer at 100+ deg the t-stat would be open all the way trying to keep engine temp at 200deg
A 180degF t-stat would be open all the way too, so upper temp would be exactly the same with either.


So a lower degree t-stat doesn't "help" anything, it just costs you money in MPG and long term in repairs.

Last edited by RonD; 05-23-2014 at 11:06 AM.
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