How Long Can You Drive with a P0128 Code? | Informative Guide

Have you ever wondered how long can you drive with a p0128 code? The p0128 engine code is a term that is mainly known as coolant thermostat code. We will discuss in this article why this occurs in your car engine and what causes it.

So, how long can you drive with a p0128 code? The engine code p0128 should not be a concerning point if your vehicle engine maintains the optimum temperature of approximately 160 degrees Fahrenheit. So, you can drive your car with diagnostic code p0128 if the engine always stays at the right temperature.

drive with a p0128 code

How Long Can You Drive with a P0128 Code?

When your engine has the trouble code p0128, it means your vehicle is not running at the right temperature. It is below average.

Though excessive hot engines are not suitable for any vehicle, a standard temperature is necessary to operate the machine efficiently.

Your engine either takes more time to warm up or not being hot enough. If this dtc code continues, you can’t achieve fuel efficiency. It may cause emission control system failure.

Why does the P0128 Error Code Occur?

The error code p0128 may show up on your engine for several reasons. Here are they:

Missing Radiator Fan

If your vehicle doesn’t have any Radiator fan, the temperature reading may rise excessively. Without a radiator fan, the temperature of your car engine will increase as long as your drive. Ultimately, it will show the code.

Defective Cables in the Circuit

The cables in the coolant temperature circuit should be defective-free to ensure a perfect level of temperature. Otherwise, the temperature may rise significantly. Thus, providing all the cables in the coolant temperature circuit are okay is necessary.

The Coolant Thermostat Jammed Up

When you have not installed the coolant thermostat for a long time, it will likely show an inaccurate temperature on the screen. Thus, the powertrain control module may exhibit obd2 code p0128 on your vehicle’s digital screen.

No Thermostat

While driving your vehicle, you are supposed to install a thermostat. No thermostat may lead to the P0128 code. If there is no coolant, you will fail to reduce the temperature.

Defective Coolant Temperature Sensor

The coolant temperature sensor needs to work correctly and smoothly without any flaws to ensure the correct temperature reading. Otherwise, it has chances to show the error code p0128 Mercedes on your car.

How To Know Your Car Has P0128 Error Code?

It is necessary to find out whether the vehicle has a P0128 error code or not. Here are some typical indications you will see in the Scanner if your car has a P0128 error code:

Delay to Start

A car engine is supposed to start within a few seconds. If your car BMW or other car takes more than average time to start, it may have BMW code p0128.

Longer Idling

If your car is idling for a more extended period than earlier, it may have a p0128 error code. It may lead to fuel inefficiency.

Lower Temperature Gauge

Continuously Monitoring the temperature gauge is necessary. It helps you to detect the error code p0128 Nissan, at the beginning.

The ideal temperature gauge should be between 195 degrees and 220 degrees. Make sure it remains on the standard level.

Fuel Inefficiency

Does your Ford engine require more time to start than earlier? It may result in either P0456 code or  P0128 code ford focus in the future. You may need to add fuel more frequently than before because your car engine is consuming more energy.

Light Is Not Switching Off

 Don’t your car’s lights turn off automatically after switching the engine off? If not, it is an early sign your car engine is not functioning normally.

How Many Kilometers Can You Drive?

According to most professional mechanics, the P0128 code is not a highly concerning point for most cars. In fact, you can drive your vehicle safely with a P0128 code.

However, if the issue stays for an extended period, taking action soonest is a solid rule of thumb. Otherwise, it causes severe damage to the vehicle.

As per many automotive technicians, you can drive a minimum of 800 kilometers with p0128 thermostat rationality. However, you should not go more than 1600 kilometers as it may cause severe damage to your vehicle.

How Much Is the Cost to fix a p0128?

P0128 fix costs can be broken down into two types. You will have to purchase the relevant parts and bear the labor cost.

The thermostat and coolant temperature sensor are two main items that get damaged due to the p0128 error code.

How much does the coolant sensor replacement cost? It may cost around $25-$50 based on the model and the type of vehicle you have.

How much does the coolant thermostat replacement cost? The exact cost may differ based on the model, your vehicle type, and your location. However, the average price will be around $150.

Will P0128 Code Clear Itself?

If any technical issue is causing the P0128 error code, it may clear itself after updating or resetting the system. However, if there is any hardware problem in your car engine, the P0128 error code will not be removed automatically. Usually, it happens as a result of damage to internal parts even after using good quality engine oil. Thus, unless you are replacing the components, the P0128 error code will not be cleared.


1. Can low coolant cause p0128 code?

Yes, low coolant can cause p0128 code by altering the current engine temperature. You should check out the coolant and thermostat level when it has dropped from the standard level.

2. Is it safe to drive with a P0128 code?

Yes, driving with a P0128 code is safe if your car doesn’t have any other internal problems. But you should not go more than 1600 kilometers. Replace the damaged parts before exceeding 1600 kilometers.

3. How much does it cost to fix P0128?

The total cost will be around $180-$200 plus the labor cost. However, if your vehicle has more damaged parts, the total cost will increase.

4. What would cause a P0128 code?

 A P0128 code can be caused by several reasons, such as-

  • Missing radiator fan
  • Defective cables in the circuit
  • The coolant thermostat jammed up
  • No thermostat
  • Defective coolant temperature sensor

Finishing Up

Are you still wondering about how long can you drive with a p0128 code? Driving your car around 1500 kilometers will not cause any problem. If the error code is still persisting, you should replace the damaged parts as early as possible. Otherwise, you will have to pay a handsome amount of money to replace multiple engine parts.


Shafiqule Islam is a graduated Mechanical Engineer. He has both on hand and managerial job experience of 15 years in automobile maintenance field. He served as Captain in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Corp of Army, Technical Head in Taxi Cab business, Head of Plant in Car assembly plant. He is writing automotive contents to share his expertise knowledge to car lovers for solving their vehicle issues.

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