Installing Your EGT Sensor? Here’s How You Do It

Your exhaust gas temperature (EGT) sensor might be a small component in the overall grand scheme of your vehicle, but it happens to be a very important component. The EGT sensor is the little soldier in your car that helps protect your exhaust’s vital components that will prevent your vehicle from overheating. Not only that, the EGT sensor also works to control emissions that are produced when you’re driving on the road.

What Else Do EGT Sensors Do?

EGT sensors are not there just to protect your vehicle from overheating. The sensor is also used in both petrol and diesel engines in several processes that involve combustion control. For example, the sensors work on exhaust gas recirculation, turbo boost, diesel particulate filter (DPF) regenerations, and selective catalytic reduction (SCR). Any changes that happen that cause changes in temperature will result in changes happening with the resistance of the sensor. This, in turn, will be communicated to the electric control unit (ECU).

When your sensor is communicating incorrect voltages to the ECU, this could lead to longer DPF regeneration times and inefficiency in fuel consumption.

Why Do I Need to Install Another EGT?

Like most other parts and components in your car, an EGT sensor is not built to last a lifetime. These sensors are built to withstand extreme amounts of heat, but extreme heat is also a cause of the sensor failure over time. The general wear and tear of the sensors that will gradually happen over time with frequent driving will eventually take its toll too.

An EGT sensor shows the first sign of failure when a reading becomes non-existent or too high. When an EGT sensor begins to fail, your DPF will soon follow suit. An increase in the exhaust temperature could eventually lead to failure of your exhaust components and other internal components of your engine. This could become a very expensive bill if the problem is not attended to immediately. When that happens, the only thing to do is to get your EGT sensor replaced. You can either opt to do this yourself, or have your auto mechanic do it for you.

You will know that your EGT sensor might be in need of replacing when your check engine light comes on or your vehicle experiences an “idle only” state.

How to Install Your EGT Sensors

Before you begin any kind of installation, EGT sensors or otherwise, always make sure that your engine and your exhaust system has well and truly cooled down before you get to work. Never work on a vehicle that has been driven recently or within the last few hours. Even though technically your engine and exhaust system should have cooled down after a few hours, it is always better to be safe than sorry. The best time to work on your vehicle is when you haven’t driven it for at least 24-hours.

Next, take a look at the EGT sensor. Before installing your new EGT sensor, remove the negative terminal of the battery and disconnect it. This step should be done before handling any type of electrical installation. Handle this sensor very carefully if you are attempting to install the sensor yourself. Dropping any of the components could potentially cause damage to the cement that is securing the thermistor. You might not be able to see the damage, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any. Handle this part very carefully and avoid rushing the process. Slow and steady is the way to go.

Once you have your sensor in your hand, notice if the sensor is threaded. If it is, use a cleaning tap and very carefully once more, clean the thread of your exhaust pipe. This should be done before installing your sensor again. Use small and gentle strokes to carefully clean the area. Take your time with this to avoid damaging the sensor or risk losing any parts during the cleaning process.

After your EGT sensor has been cleaned, you will need some copper grease. This copper grease should only be applied to the  sensor thread and nothing else. Sensor threads need grease to minimize friction and stop the thread from galling. Some sensors would already come pre-greased, but you can still apply a little bit of copper grease anyway (very little, though, if it already has some grease on it). A little extra grease never hurts anybody and again, it minimizes the friction and prevents your torque from overloading. This is especially useful when you have a stainless steel thread that you’re working with. You could also apply some anti-seize to the thread of the EGT.

Once that is done, it is time to tighten your EGT sensor. During this process, you should only tighten your sensor to the required torque that has been prescribed. This should be done using an open-ended torque wrench. This will avoid damaging the wire and you don’t run the risk of over-tightening your sensor either. Finally, it is time to reinstall your electrical connector once your new EGT sensor is in place. You’re nearly done, and the last step of the process is to turn on the engine. Check that your exhaust system is working as it should and it isn’t, then you might need to reset your ECU.

Vehicle Maintenance Is Key

Vehicles should be maintained properly and regularly to ensure every component is always in peak working condition. Looking after your vehicle ensures that you stay problem-free for much longer and avoid those very expensive repair bills that nobody wants to deal with if they could.

It is a good idea to check your EGT sensors every six months, even if everything is in working order. An overall vehicle maintenance check could help to pinpoint or detect early signs of a potential problem that might be looming. Getting to the problem early gives you a much better chance of getting things fixed before the problem grows bigger and more expensive.

To take a look at the selection of EGT sensor options, visit


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