The thermostat is located right by the engine under the air intake box. To get to it, the coil pack has to be removed. That is held on by four 7mm bolts. The housing is held on by 2 12mm bolts.
-Carlos You have to remove your air filter box, and it is underneath it. Basically, you will see a metal coolant pipe running from the bottom of the radiator to a junction right next to your intake manifold, and there will be 2 bolts holding it on, as well as a bolt holding the collant pipe to the block. Also, when you replace the thermostat, you have to replace the gasket. I used 2 gaskets, one on the thermostat (the one I took out had a big oring thingy around it, the new one didn't, nor did they hayne's manual mention an oring, so i reused it), and there is one that goes on the thermostat housing. It's like .99 at autozone, and the thermostat is like $10. Make sure you face it the same way too! Otherwise, your car will continue to overheat. Also, you MUST use RTV gasket sealant on the housing gasket (but not on the oring gasket, if you have one). And NO, you DO NOT have to remove the intake manifold.
.....[======]..\\........| ....<----rear bank of cylinders
.INTAKE MAN%........| ....<-----% sign is the thermostat
.....[======]..........| .....<----front bank of cylinders
_________________| .....<----front of car
The thermostat housing on the 1998 Mazda 626 6 cylinder is located underneath the air filter housing. You need to remove this air filter housing to get to the thermostat housing. There's two (2) bolts the left connecting the thermostat housing to the motor and another two (2) bolts facing the steering wheel connecting it to the engine. This is where the thermostat is housed.
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