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Discussion Starter #1
For top of the line models, what sensors are located around the top & bottom grills?

I have a 2016 RAV4 Hybrid Limited with Technology Package and would like to confirm whether our RAV4H has a single camera / sensor in the center of the top grill and no safety equipment in the bottom grill.

I didn't have time to inspect the grills carefully this weekend because I had to perform an oil change on another vehicle and do lots of household chores around the house and I'm still awaiting the 3M no residue duct tape I ordered from Walmart Canada.

Many thanks.
 

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Your exterior ambient temperature sensor is located behind the lower grill in the upper corner on the driver's side. This applies to all trim levels for Hybrids. It's pretty easy to see if you look into the grill. I don't think there are any others.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Mikey. So excited to plaster the grills once my duct tape arrives.
 

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Your exterior ambient temperature sensor is located behind the lower grill in the upper corner on the driver's side. This applies to all trim levels for Hybrids. It's pretty easy to see if you look into the grill. I don't think there are any others.
Do you know if blocking the lower grill entirely is bad for this temperature sensor such that it might force the cooling fan and radiator on more frequently as if the vehicle is about to overheat?

Or is this just a sensor to display the outside temperature on the instrument cluster? If this is the case, I probably don't care how accurate the temperature outside is.
 

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The sensor in the bottom grill (as far as I can tell) only affects the readings for the temp displayed on your dash. Now, it may be possible that the HVAC system also relies on this temperature when heating / cooling your vehicle but it may not...

Your primary engine cooling system has its own temperature sensors detecting the coolant temps. The external ambient air temp sensor should have no bearing on that.

Blocking the lower grill entirely should be just fine. My lower grill is about 85% blocked and I saw normal engine temperatures (using a ScanGauge) even with the ambient air at 90 degrees F. If you end up blocking both bottom and top grills, then I would be more concerned with the engine temps unless you're in a very cold environment. Depending on your conditions in winter in Canada, blocking all the grills might be helpful in retaining engine bay heat to allow for more EV operation and so forth... But, I would only do that if you have Hybrid Assistant or a ScanGauge - something that can give you more precise readings of your water temps. The thermostat opens at 180 degrees F and the radiator fans will kick on around 196 degrees F. If you hear the radiator fans on, you're probably running too hot.

If you use tape, one thing you could do is to poke a couple of small holes in the tape near the sensor to allow a minor amount of air through at speed. Then your sensor would probably give more accurate readings.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Great idea about putting in some holes on the board in front of that sensor.

Thanks for your help Mikey.
 

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Now, it may be possible that the HVAC system also relies on this temperature when heating / cooling your vehicle
It most certainly does, to a significant extent. There's also a humidity sensor somewhere, but that may be in the HVAC system itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So best not to block the sensor then? I don't min having a gaping hole on the board if it's a better compromise in the long run.
 
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