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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Need a little help. Thermostat housing is off. I expected I'd be able to just pull the gasket off and the thermostat out but it's stuck tight. I've never needed to change one before so I don't know what the gasket looks like and I don't want to damage it or the engine surface at this point.

So, is it just a flat gasket? Or is it an o-ring that's flattened from age? Is it in a groove? What's the best technique for gentle removal?
 

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The gasket is circular and flat. The thermostat sits in a channel of the gasket l that overlaps both sides of the thermostat. Grab the thermostat with a needle nose.
 

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The seal has a grove in it that the thermostat sits in, this gives a rubber sealing surface on both the head side and housing side.

Just stick a screwdriver in the end of the thermostat and lever it out. Replace both the seal and thermostat.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
OK, thanks, I will pull and pry harder. I did try prying with a screwdriver but with a fair amount of leverage it still didn't want to come out. Probably the original with 112K / 18 years on it now. I'm trying to avoid breaking it as I want to reuse it for the testing on this motor. It only needs to give a little more, and marginal, service.
 

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As far as I can recall, the seal comes with the thermostat, basically a rubber bumper around the edge. There is no separate gasket or seal for the thermostat housing.


Carefully inspect everything for corrosion. Sounds like the car may have had old or improper coolant. Is this a 2001? Should have DexCool I would think.



Replace the thermostat with an actual Saab thermostat (assuming Orio still supplies the real thing and not a repackaged ProParts)....or take your chances. Typical problem with aftermarket thermostats is running cooler than normal, and temp gauge dropping a bit below horizontal.
 

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There is no seal for the housing, just the u-channel seal for the thermostat. Most replacements come with a seal, but it is also available separately.


Orio ships Motorad thermostats I believe... that's what I got last time, and what I got for the 9-3SC Aero. It's OE AFAIK. You can buy the non-Saab-packaged Motorad for $6 pretty reliably, or pay Orio their $12 or $15. (I remember when a Saab c900 thermostat was $25!)


'01 could be blue stuff (G48) or it could be Dexcool depending on the month. Personally, I don't mess with G48 anymore. It either gets Dexcool or Prestone "all makes" (which is very similar to DexCool these days). Obviously a good flush with distilled water first, regardless.
 

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Orio ships Motorad thermostats I believe... that's what I got last time, and what I got for the 9-3SC Aero. It's OE AFAIK. You can buy the non-Saab-packaged Motorad for $6 pretty reliably, or pay Orio their $12 or $15. (I remember when a Saab c900 thermostat was $25!)

I got a Motorad 89º thermostat (only application was Saabs) in a Motorad box from Candian Tire. Thermostat said Motorad. Car ran cool nevertheless. I purchased a Saab-boxed thermostat. Thermostat said Motorad. Was not quite identical, tough. Temp gauge never budges from horizontal. Unhappily for me, it was $15 CAD for the Motorad box, and close to $30 for the Saab box.



I wish I had taken a picture of the thermostats side by side, but I probably didn't have a digital camera back then.
 

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If this is a "before digital cameras" anecdote, it's possible that things have changed in the interim - I've certainly not had issues with the last several I've purchased.


I do notice that Motorad does not appear to sell a 189F thermostat.... they have a 160F, 170F, and 192F, the latter is listed as OE. Of course, thermostats aren't an exact science, so who knows what the numbers mean in practice. :)


On this blown up 5-door I bought a Stant "195F" - I'm interested to see how it performs. TBH, my expectations are low.
 

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Just as a data point:

I just did a head swap to correct a BIG external coolant leak. I put a new Wahler t-stat in the freshened head prior to installation. The old t-stat was stuck open and the car would not warm up properly. It runs as expected now...warms up quickly and relatively steady temps when monitored with TorquePRO.
 

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If this is a "before digital cameras" anecdote, it's possible that things have changed in the interim - I've certainly not had issues with the last several I've purchased.

I got my digital camera....and the laptop I'm currently using....in September 2013. I got a Saab in 2011, so that puts the thermostat business around 2012.

I do notice that Motorad does not appear to sell a 189F thermostat.... they have a 160F, 170F, and 192F, the latter is listed as OE. Of course, thermostats aren't an exact science, so who knows what the numbers mean in practice. :)
Their listings for Saabs have certainly gotten more confusing.

Item 48349 is 192º F and is listed for 2.3 9-5s and some 9000s. It's also listed as "discontinued". :roll: I think that's the part number I purchased. Would have to find the box, if that is possible, to verify (not home today....steal my Saab!).
 

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I got a Motorad 89º thermostat (only application was Saabs) in a Motorad box from Candian Tire. Thermostat said Motorad. Car ran cool nevertheless. I purchased a Saab-boxed thermostat. Thermostat said Motorad. Was not quite identical, tough. Temp gauge never budges from horizontal. Unhappily for me, it was $15 CAD for the Motorad box, and close to $30 for the Saab box.



I wish I had taken a picture of the thermostats side by side, but I probably didn't have a digital camera back then.
I noticed the same thing when I replaced an aftermarket Motorad thermostat with a Saab-packaged Motorad. They weren't quite identical. Another thing I thought was odd was that the Saab package said "made in Germany", but according to Motorad's website, they don't make anything in Germany. All I could figure was that Saab packages the thermostats there and that they're not as strict as the US about country of origin labeling.
 

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I can't imagine Germany being less strict than the US about anything. Those are the guys that require TUV approval for everything, like getting your nails did. Pretty sure TUV even has standards for putting pants on correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Maybe the packaged was "Made in Germany" and the thermostat elsewhere.



Are there US retailers that sell Motorad?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Back to the original point... With some knowledge of how it was held in place (or not) in hand, I just pried a little harder and it came out. It's not original but from the deposits on the seal, it must have been in there a while.

I only needed to get it out and bootstrapped with no thermostat for the test of that motor. I'll get a new one for the road worthy install.

Bootstrap test photos coming soon :)
 
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