Crankshaft position sensor set ignition timing, supply the RPM signal, and determine engine speed.
When the crankshaft position sensor fails, it stops transmitting the signal.
The crankshaft position sensors signal contains the vital data for the ignition and other parts in the system.
The engine computer takes the data from both the crankshaft position sensor and the camshaft sensor to evaluate how the engine is performing.
The speed and position of the crankshaft are two key parameters that the car’s computer uses for engine management calculations.
Also, A bad crankshaft position sensor can cause faults such as:
- Engine idling erratically
- Failure to start
- Poor starting
- Flat acceleration
- Engine misfiring
- Excessive engine vibration
So, If you are having problems starting your car, it could indicate a bad crankshaft position sensor.
The crankshaft position sensor will be located at the lower section of the engine block. It can either be at the front, rear or middle of the engine at the crankshaft level.
So, you have finished testing your crankshaft position sensor, and you have determined that it has indeed failed.
If you need more help on testing and troubleshooting read our related blog posts:
- Crankshaft Position Sensor Failure Symptoms
- Crankshaft-Camshaft Position Sensor
- Crankshaft-Camshaft Position Sensor Testing Made Easy
Basic Steps To Replace A Crankshaft Position Sensor
With a good set of instructions, the right tools, and some effort, you can replace your crankshaft position sensor yourself.
Safety First-Always Wear Protective Gloves and Eyewear.
1-Disconnect The Battery
Disconnect the negative battery ground cable before you begin. In addition, This ensures there will be no accidental shocks that could injure you and damage the car’s electronics.
2-Prepare Access To The Work Area
Jack the vehicle up high enough to obtain access to the crankshaft position sensor. Secure the vehicle in this position using jack stands. You may have to remove some other parts before you can reach the sensor. In short, take out anything that’s getting in between you and the sensor.
3-Disconnect The Electrical Connector
The sensor uses a plastic clip which you must push down or pull outward to release. Once this is done gentle wiggle the connector loose from the sensor. Once the connector is removed check it for rust and clean or replace the pigtail if needed. Since, This problem alone will cause the engine to stall.
4-Remove The Sensor Mounting Bolt
The sensor is typically held in place with one or two 10mm bolts. Gently but firmly, twist and pull the sensor to remove it from the engine. If the sensor doesn’t slide out easily you may have to pry it out. A door panel clip removal tool can actually be helpful here.
5-Remove The Sensor
Gently but firmly, twist and pull the sensor to remove it from the engine. Sometimes removing the crank sensor can be a little difficult because they can get stuck in the block. If the sensor doesn’t slide out easily you may have to pry it out. A door panel clip removal tool can actually be helpful here. Be careful not to apply too much pressure because these sensors have been known to break.
What Are your Choices If It Breaks
- So, If it does break you may have to remove the oil pan and pry it out from the inside.
- Optional Tip– Drill a small hole in the centre of the sensor if there is none. Get a small lag bolt that fits the hole. Use JB Weld or a similar product on the thread of the bolt. Screw it in and let dry. Again use a small pry bar and wiggle it out. This may save you from removing the oil pan. (GOOD LUCK)
6-Prepare The O-Ring
Lightly lubricate the o-ring that is on the new sensor to make it easier to install.
7-Install The New Sensor
Before installing the new sensor use a clean rag to clean the position sensor port hole. You can spray cleaner on the shop towel to aid the cleaning process. Position the new crank sensor squarely into the sensor port hole and firmly push it into place. Then insert the mounting bolt and thread it in by hand by turning it clockwise to avoid cross threading. After the sensor has been installed thread the mounting bolt into place and tighten to about 2-3 foot pounds.
8-Re-Connect The Electrical Connector
Plug the new crankshaft position sensor into the engine wiring harness. Also, Make sure that the connector clip is engaged all the way on the sensor. Then, you just need to replace any parts you removed to access the sensor.
9-Lower The Vehicle
Carefully remove the jack stands and lower the vehicle.
10-Reconnect The Battery
Finally, Reconnect the negative battery cable and you are good to go.
Consequently, A failing or failed crankshaft position sensor may cause the check engine light on your dashboard to come on. A diagnostic scan tool will show a code between P0335 and P0338. The crankshaft position sensor is critical to proper engine functionality and performance. When they have issues, they can quickly lead to problems that affect the drivability of the vehicle.