"outside temp" accuracy

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Muleears, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. Muleears

    Muleears New Member

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    It is getting hotter here in SC but I don't think we have broken the 100 mark as my car told me yesterday. I am a new owner of an '01. I realize the reading will be high after the car has been sitting in the hot sun for a while. But after driving a few miles it should moderate, I think. Where is the sensor for outside temp? Mine is consistantly reading 10 to 15 degrees high, according to the weatherman. Are these nororiously inaccurate? Any advice?
     
  2. auricchio

    auricchio Member

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    It's guaranteed that the weatherman is not taking his temperature readings where your car is! Weather readings often come from local airports, where it's necessary to make observations for aviation. Airports typically are located in areas that get hotter or cooler than the surrounding population centers.

    You also must take into account the heat reflected from hot roadways. On some cars, the temp sensor is low enough to be strongly affected by this.

    That said, I'm also curious as to the location of the car's temp sensor.

    On a side note, it was years before I learned that wind chill doesn't affect mechanical devices. Wind chill causes increased evaporation from skin, giving the appearance of greater cold. The car's temp sensor---or the Golden Gate Bridge---don't care about how quickly they're cooled to the ambient temperature. People and animals, of course, care, because our bodies must create additional heat to compensate. Just today's science bit.
     
  3. Maytrix

    Maytrix New Member

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    I have a 2005 and I'm not sure where it's located, but mine does seem to be very accurate.
     
  4. Jeannie

    Jeannie Proud Prius Granny

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    My 'outside temperature' is fairly accurate. I left my white Prius in a parking lot all day, left work with the National Weather Service reporting a temp of 73 at their station about 6 miles from where my car was. When I turned on the car, it said outside temp was 75 degrees. Five minutes later, when I was on a rural road that's mostly shadowed by trees, it said outside temp was 73.
     
  5. SAPrius

    SAPrius New Member

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    Ditto! My OAT (pilot talk for outside air temperature) appears to be quite accurate. It's normally within a degree or two of what the radio/weather DJ announces.

    Last summer, the hottest outside air temp I noted on the display was a "cool" 108F! Ouch!
     
  6. rdenneyutmb

    rdenneyutmb New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(SAPrius @ Apr 27 2006, 03:57 PM) [snapback]246274[/snapback]</div>
    The thermometer on my new '06 (bought March 20th) is fairly close, too.
     
  7. gippah

    gippah New Member

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    I'd have to say that mine is high as well. It has shown it to be over 105 already this year.

    There are some sites on the internet which will list several weatherstations for most cities. If you think it might be high, look around a bit and see what all of the weatherstations are reporting in the area. If you're higher than all of them, you can bet that your car is on the high side.
     
  8. hycamguy07

    hycamguy07 New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(gippah @ Apr 27 2006, 06:20 PM) [snapback]246319[/snapback]</div>
    Hmmm, where is the temp probe located?
     
  9. ghostofjk

    ghostofjk New Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Muleears @ Apr 27 2006, 07:16 AM) [snapback]246077[/snapback]</div>
    First (if you haven't been properly welcomed), welcome to PC!

    No, they're not notoriously inaccurate. I've owned 4 Priuses, starting with an '01, and they've all been almost dead on. In fact, sometimes when I'm driving around sunset and the car goes through a cooler or warmer pocket of air (say, of about half a mile in size), I'll notice the temp readout adjust a few degrees, which I verify by sticking my arm out the window.

    I think the sensor's inside the driver's side fender, and should get no influence from the engine. (Galaxee will know, and respond, if she sees this---her hubby's a Prius mechanic---or you could find her name and PM her.)

    It DOES take mine about 5 minutes or so sometimes after it's been sitting in the sun to shake down to the actual temp.

    Don't know what to suggest---other than perhaps taping a cheap outside thermometer ($.99) to something as far toward the front of the engine compartment as you can---just to double-check your car's sensor for a while.

    Good luck.
     
  10. alanh

    alanh Active Member

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    It's located behind the front bumper.
    [attachmentid=12233]
    Mine's pretty accurate. I've only noticed it off after a car wash.
     

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  11. Bob64

    Bob64 Sapphire of the Blue Sky

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    Was about to post that it was right in front of the radiator... so those of us that are blocking our grills and have the car's Engine Block Heater plugged in will notice that the temps will be way off until the wind gets into grill area and starts to move the warmer air out.
     
  12. patsparks

    patsparks An Aussie perspective

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    Gooday Muleears, welcome.

    [​IMG]
    This is where you minimum and maximum temperatures are recorded so if you drive over grass and your car is white I would expect the temperature reading to be pretty accurate. The temperature on a clay tennis court can be 15+ degrees hotter than in the shade on green lawn, I expect the roads can be much the same.
     
  13. davidtm

    davidtm Member

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    I also recall reading in my Volvo book that the temp is most accurate when the car is moving, as it minimizes the effect of roadway heat buildup or engine heat buildup when the car is sitting in traffic. Also, the temp is higher in urban settings than in rural settings, as already mentioned. I'm usually pleased when I'm within 2-3 degrees of what's reported.
     
  14. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    You will also notice that in the U.S. version, the temperature jumps by almost two degree increments. This is because it is really a Celsius system that converts to Fahrenheit, and one Celsius degree is equal to 1.8 Fahrenheit degrees.

    Tom
     
  15. Solarman44

    Solarman44 Junior Member

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    I have noticed this week that my 2004 Prius is acting funky with the outside temps. It seems to be locked on the 88 degree mark and I know it's not that warm here yet, even if it's Florida. Will call the dealer and ask to have it checked.
     
  16. Aaron

    Aaron Member

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    I have noticed the outside temperature sensor is affected by water. Thus, if you wash your Prius yourself or by auto car wash, it will take a little while for the temperature to read accurate again. It always bounces back to normal after it dries off.

    The temperature sensor is located behind the front bumper, passenger side in front of the radiator. If you remove the black plastic cover that runs in front of the engine compartment along the radiator, you can see it.
     
  17. Cuz'n Eddie

    Cuz'n Eddie New Member

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    Mine is generally spot on.
     
  18. Sheepdog

    Sheepdog C'Mere Sheepie!

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    what Aaron said. In the front bumper on the pax side. Mine seems pretty much spot on -wether the car plays tennis while Im not around I dont know!
     
  19. kazots

    kazots LifesaBeach

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    I have to look for it, I would hate not knowing when it fell off.
     
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