Internal combustion engines are complicated as they use several parts that must work together to function appropriately.
Sensors are significant components in an internal combustion engine as they collect valuable data about engine parts and their functioning send them to other parts to execute commands.
With modern internal engines using many electric relays and ECUs, sensors become vital for the ECU to know what changes to make.
A camshaft controls important combustion mechanisms in an internal combustion engine of a car or any other vehicle. One of the most critical sensors is the camshaft position sensor. In this article, you will know
How to Reset Camshaft Position Sensor
You cannot resent an internal engine camshaft position sensor as it works like a magnet by turning on and off as the camshaft moves.
However, you can replace it. A camshaft position sensor operates by turning on or off through a magnet when a camshaft passes. After this action, the camshaft sensor will gradually fit.
Ensure you fit the camshaft position sensor well before you start the process.
The camshaft works by identifying the position of the camshaft and sends that data to the ECU for further fuel and combustion steps.
Through a camshaft position sensor, the engine’s electronic circuit unit can know the position of the camshaft at any given time, hence the position of valves and the following actions.
When a camshaft moves, it affects the position of fuel and exhaust valves; through synchronized timing, fuel is allocated to the cylinders and ignited at the right time.
Where Is Camshaft’s Position Sensor Located?
The engine’s camshaft position sensor monitors the rotation of a camshaft to ensure fuel supply, air, and ignition commands are sent at the right time.
The electronic control unit receives signals from the camshaft position sensor, hence knowing the camshaft’s position and calculating what action commands to send to the cylinders.
The camshaft position sensor sits close to a cylinder head, where the camshaft is. The location is ideal as it is close to the camshaft, and the sensor can operate effectively.
Is It Safe To Drive With A Faulty Camshaft Sensor?
No. It is not safe. It is dangerous to drive with a camshaft sensor. A camshaft position sensor greatly influences the performance of your car engine.
It affects fuel supply to the engine. A faulty camshaft sensor can easily send wrong information, making your car stall dangerous.
7 Signs Of A Faulty Camshaft Position Sensor
1. Ignition Problems
A camshaft position sensor transmits vital signals to the car’s computer system or ECU. The ECU then determines when to command fuel injection or ignition.
As a result, when a camshaft position sensor is faulty, it will send delayed or no signals, affecting ignition.
Without the camshaft position sensor sending these vital signals to the car’s ECU, a spark command is not sent hence no ignition.
2. Check Engine Indicator/Light
A check engine light is the first thing you will get when your camshaft position sensor starts having issues. However, a “Check Engine” light can mean so many things.
For this case, the best thing to do and any professional mechanic will do is diagnose the car, get the right codes, and interpret the meaning. When you notice this, get a tool to scan the codes or a mechanic who can do it for you.
3. Engine Stalling
A stalling engine can easily signify a faulty camshaft position sensor. When a camshaft position sensor is failing, it cannot send the right information to the ECU at the right time.
These delays also delay instructions to supply fuel into your car engine cylinders. As a result, your engine keeps on stalling. It can be dangerous and needs to be checked quickly.
4. Shifting Problems
Some car models experience gear-shifting problems when they have a faulty camshaft position sensor. As a result, a car sticks to one gear. It is directly related to fuel supply, air, and ignition in the engine.
5. Car Surging/Jerking
A camshaft position sensor’s efficiency directly affects an engine’s performance. An engine’s fuel and combustion timing are affected once a camshaft position sensor is bad. It will easily cause a car to lose power and jerk since there are delays in fuel supply.
In this case, wrong information is sent to the fuel injection system hence power combustion and lack of power.
6. Poor Acceleration
When you accelerate your car, there is a sudden quick demand for fuel into the engine. When everything is okay, commands are sent within a fraction of a minute, and the fuel injection system can provide fuel.
However, a faulty camshaft position sensor will delay or send no information affecting fuel supply hence poor acceleration.
7. Bad fuel consumption
All the signals sent by a camshaft position sensor are vital in determining when and how much fuel goes into the engine cylinders. As a result, when a camshaft fails and sends wrong information, wrong amounts of fuel is supplied.
With this coupled with wrong spark timing, too much fuel goes to waste, and you experience poor fuel mileage.
Causes Of A Bad Camshaft Position Sensor
The following are factors that will make your camshaft sensor go bad.
- Tear and wear
- Melting or overheating
- Water damage
- Engine oil
- Corrosion on the metallic parts
- Short circuit damage
- Spark or fire damage
- Other physical damage
Can You Clean A Camshaft Position Sensor? How?
You can clean a camshaft sensor. Since dirt, oil, or water may cause a camshaft position sensor to go bad, clearing can help.
To clean, use a clean towel to wipe areas with dirt. The next step is to blow the sensor using moderate compressed air to flush out dirt debris.
Always note that this is not a solution to fixing a faulty camshaft position sensor. In most cases, you will have to replace it with a new one.
Is It Possible To Replace A Camshaft Position Sensor On Your Own?
Yes. You can replace a camshaft position sensor on your own. It is a straightforward process.
First, make sure you buy a new sensor from a reputable dealer to get the right product. A camshaft sensor will cost you between $25 and $100. It will take between 10 and 20 minutes to change a camshaft sensor.
Steps for Replacing Camshaft Position Sensor
- Start by disconnecting your car’s negative battery terminal. By doing this, you will have stopped the power supply to various parts of the car.
- Locate the camshaft sensor. This sensor is on the top part of the engine cylinder head. It may be on the engine’s top, rear, or front side. The sensor will also have 2 or 3 connector wires attached.
- To disconnect connector wires, release the sensor’s tab.
- The sensor has a mounting bolt that attaches to the car engine. Remove this mounting bolt which is 8 to 10mm in size. It varies from one car to another.
- By use of a slight twist, pull the camshaft sensor ff.
- Take your new sensor, and using a bit of engine oil, lubricate its o-ring.
- Next, install your new camshaft into the engine and use the bolts to secure it in place.
- The next step is to return the connecting wires to the right position.
- Lastly, connect the negative terminal of your battery back.
Is A Camshaft Position Sensor The Same As A Crankshaft Sensor?
No. A camshaft’s position sensor is not the same as a crank sensor. The two may sound almost the same but are different. So are their functions in an internal engine.
Just like the name, a camshaft position sensor is related to an engine’s camshaft. All the functions of this sensor are related to the camshaft.
That is, to carry signals on the movement of the camshaft and send them to the car’s electronic control unit to determine fuel requirements and ignition.
On the other hand, a crankshaft position sensor is associated with the engine crankshaft. It is a sensor that detects the speeds of a crankshaft when it speeds.
The sensor sends vital information on the crankshaft’s movement to the engine control unit. Since the crankshaft controls the movement of a vehicle by turning the wheels, the information generated enables the car system to determine power requirements.
A camshaft position sensor is crucial for any vehicle or machine using an internal combustion engine to function effectively.
A camshaft position engine helps a car’s electronic system determine when fuel gets into the cylinders and when the mixture is ignited. Driving with a faulty camshaft position sensor. When you notice issues with your camshaft sensor, make sure you address them as soon as possible.