Temporary Fix for Crankshaft Position Sensor

Fix for Crankshaft Position Sensor

The crankshaft's rotation and position monitoring is carried out by the crankshaft position sensor, which plays a fundamental role in the operation of a vehicle's engine management system.

Disregarded or faulty sensors may bring about various engine obstacles like starting troubles, troublesome idling, and inadequate quickening. Even though substituting the sensor is the most practical and enduring answer, cleaning the sensor, regulating its location, or fixing its wiring can offer a provisional resolution in some conditions to get the car to start rolling again.

It is essential to remember that a temporary fix for the crankshaft position sensor is not an enduring one and should be taken as a short-term measure until you correctly change the sensor.

How the Crankshaft Position Sensor Works

The crankshaft position sensor utilizes the application of a magnetic field for the recognition of a toothed wheel affixed to the crankshaft.

As the crankshaft rotates, the toothed wheel is traversed by the sensor, producing a corresponding AC voltage signal based on the speed and location of the crankshaft.

Subsequently, the ECM employs this data to decide the accurate timing of the ignition and fuel injection systems.

The sensor could be either a hall effect sensor or a magnetic reluctor sensor. The first type uses a permanent magnetic area, while the latter uses a magnetic field caused by an integrated system.

Both operate similarly by yielding a voltage signal when the sensor crosses the toothed wheel of the crankshaft.

The accuracy of the crankshaft position sensor is exceptionally vital to the engine's proper functioning.

Any malfunctions with the sensor can result in issues with the engine's timing and performance.

If a fault is assumed, the appropriate diagnosis and treatment of the matter should be quick to steer clear of more significant issues in the future.

How To the Crankshaft Position Sensor Is Faulty

A faulty crankshaft position sensor is capable of causing a range of symptoms that can affect the performance and reliability of a vehicle.

The following are common symptoms to watch out for:

1. Difficulty Starting the Engine

A malfunctioning sensor might cause the engine to turn over without starting, or it might initiate running, then soon turn off. The ECM needs precise details from the sensor to decide the accurate fuel injection and ignition timing.

2. Engine Misfires or Rough Idling

If the sensor sends the wrong signals to the ECM, it can cause the engine to misfire or idle roughly. This is capable of generating a reduction in power and acceleration.

3. Stalling

A defect in the crankshaft position sensor may generate an unexpected stalling of the engine, mainly when the transportation is idle or running at low velocity. This danger may arise if the automobile dies out while in transit.

4. Poor Fuel Efficiency

The fuel efficiency might be adversely affected if the sensor is delivering inaccurate data to the ECM, which can, in turn, lead to the engine being too lean or rich, causing increased emissions.

5. Check Engine Light

A dashboard warning lamp labeled "check engine" can be caused by a defective crankshaft position sensor. Coinciding with this indication, various diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) are viable to identify the source of the issue.

Causes of a Malfunctioning Crankshaft Position Sensor

The crankshaft position sensor is a critical component of a vehicle's engine and can malfunction for several reasons.

The following are some of the most common causes of a malfunctioning crankshaft position sensor:

1. Wear and Tear

The sensor's accuracy and dependability can be impacted negatively as it ages, possibly due to extreme temperatures, vibration, or other mechanical forces. This can degrade it over time. Take appropriate measures to protect and preserve the sensor from such conditions to prevent such degradation.

2. Wiring Problems

A wiring harness links the sensor to the ECM, and any issues in the wiring can negatively influence the sensor's performance. Fraying of the cables, breaks in the wires, connections that are not snug, or eroded contacts can still impact.

3. Sensor Positioning

The crankshaft must align with the sensor to work appropriately. Wrong installation or misalignment of the sensor will result in performance issues.

4. Contamination

Contamination of the sensor due to debris, dirt, or oil may impede functionality, a likelihood increased for vehicles traversing along rough terrain or in areas with high levels of dust and dirt.

5. Electrical Interference

A low-level alternating current voltage signal is used to operate the sensor; however, other electrical components in the automobile could affect its precision and dependability.

6. Failed ECM

In rare cases, the issue with the crankshaft position sensor may not be with the sensor itself but with the ECM. A malfunctioning ECM can send incorrect signals to the sensor, leading to engine timing and performance issues.

Temporary Fix for Crankshaft Position Sensor

If you're experiencing issues with a faulty crankshaft position sensor, there are several short-term and long-term solutions that you can consider.

Short-term Solutions

  1. Cleaning the sensor: It is possible to revive the functioning of the sensor by cleaning it if contaminated by dirt or other particles. The sensor should be removed, wiped with a mild substance, and then put back in place to accomplish this.
  2. Adjusting the sensor position: Changing the sensor's location can achieve better results. Adjustment necessitates freeing the fasteners, moving the sensor, and then firmly securing the screws.
  3. Repairing the wiring: When dealing with a wiring issue, one may need to fix or exchange the wiring to restore the sensor's performance.

Long-term Solutions

  1. Replacing the sensor: If the sensor is damaged beyond repair or provides false signals to the ECM, replacing it with a new sensor is the best long-term solution.
  2. Upgrading the sensor: If you're experiencing recurrent issues with the crankshaft position sensor, upgrading to a higher-quality sensor can improve the sensor's performance and reliability.
  3. Fixing the underlying issue: If the issue with the sensor is caused by a more significant problem, such as a failing ECM or mechanical issues with the engine, addressing the underlying issue is the best long-term solution.

How To Adjust the Position of a Crankshaft Position Sensor

If you suspect your vehicle's crankshaft position sensor is misaligned, you may need to change its position.

The crankshaft position sensor is near the bottom of the engine, and it's mounted to the engine with a pair of mounting bolts.

Here are the steps to follow to adjust the position of the sensor:

  1. Disconnect the battery: Before working on the sensor, disconnect the battery's negative terminal to prevent electrical damage or injury.
  2. Locate the sensor: The sensor is near the crankshaft at the bottom of the engine. Check your vehicle's owner's manual for the exact location.
  3. Loosen the mounting bolts: Use a socket wrench to loosen the mounting bolts of the sensor, but do not remove them entirely.
  4. Adjust the position: Gently move the sensor in the direction it needs to be adjusted. It's essential to refer to your vehicle's owner's manual or service manual for the correct positioning of the sensor. Move the sensor in small increments until it is in the right position.
  5. Tighten the bolts: Once the sensor is in the correct position, tighten the mounting bolts with a socket wrench. Be careful not to overtighten the bolts, as this can damage the sensor or the engine.
  6. Reconnect the battery: Reconnect the negative terminal and start the engine to see if the issue resolves.

When To Replace the Crankshaft Position Sensor Permanently

Is your car having symptoms such as reduced engine power and low fuel efficiency? It might be necessary to substitute the crankshaft position sensor finally.

In such a situation, the check engine light frequently indicates that the sensor needs replacing. When the sensor is not providing exact info to the engine control module, it can cause various problems that provoke the check engine light.

In addition to the check engine indicator, a malfunctioning crankshaft position sensor may cause one's car to suffer from stalling while being used or halted.

If one notices frequent stalling of their automobile, that could indicate the sensor is not working correctly and requiring replacement. A malfunctioning sensor may lead to less significant power, misfires, and erratic idling.

It could indicate that the crankshaft position sensor needs replacement if you have difficulty starting your engine. This sensor has a crucial role in activating the engine, and a defective sensor will potentially cause the engine to fail to ignite.

Consult a qualified mechanic for a lasting replacement of the crankshaft position sensor. Adjusting the sensor might be a temporary solution. However, only a substitution of the sensor can guarantee that the engine is functioning as it should.

The cost of changing out the crankshaft position sensor can vary based on the car's make and model. Yet, buying a superior quality sensor is prudent to guarantee the vehicle runs smoothly and with efficacy.

By replacing the sensor definitively, future expensive repairs can be fended off, assuring the vehicle is always functioning at its best.


A faulty crankshaft position sensor can cause serious engine problems, and fixing it as soon as possible is essential.

The temporary fixes listed here may not solve the problem permanently but could come in handy as a last resort. It's best to have the sensor replaced by a professional as soon as possible to avoid more severe engine problems.