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6 Most Common Crankshaft Position Sensor Symptoms

6 Most Common Crankshaft Position Sensor Symptoms
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All the modern vehicles have the crankshaft position sensor. It is a component for monitoring the crankshaft’s rotational speed and position. It also sends a report to the engine control unit so that the latter can make the right adjustments should anything is malfunctioning. There are several failure crankshaft position sensor symptoms that you should pay attention to. Many engine models stop functioning if this component fails to send accurate signals.

The Most Common Failure Crankshaft Position Sensor Symptoms

The speed and position of the crankshaft are two key parameters that the car’s computer uses for engine management calculations. So, you may understand how important it is for the sensor to work without any glitch. Let’s learn about some crankshaft position sensor failure symptoms so that you can take action when there’s a problem.

1. Check Engine Light Is On

Crankshaft Position Sensor Problems
Check engine light comes on if the sensor is overheated.

It can come on for various reasons and sensor problem is one of crankshaft position sensor symptoms. Sometimes, it stops working due to overheating and causes the light to turn on. In that case, cooling down the engine for some time will cool off the sensor too and turn the light off. Otherwise, you will need a mechanic to check the car’s computer to determine the source of the trouble.

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2. Vibrations in the Engine

crankshaft position sensor symptoms
Vibration from engine is usually the cause

A failed sensor means no monitoring for the crankshaft position. It causes the engine to start vibrating heavily. Ultimately, the juddering can affect the engine power and mess with the recording of mileage.

3. Slow Response from the Accelerator

The accelerators sometime cannot follow up

If the sensor is facing any trouble, it won’t send correct information about the position of the cylinders. It means there will be a gap between the computer receiving data and applying it. For this reason, the accelerator hesitates and does not give a real-time response.

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4. Erratic Starting

crankshaft position sensor symptoms
One of the most serious crankshaft position sensor symptoms

It’s one of the most serious crankshaft position sensor symptoms. The computer receives a malfunction code when the sensor is completely gone. The symptom starts with difficulty in starting and leaves the car dead one day if you don’t get it fixed. The starting problem could be the result of electrical connection or circuit problems too.

5. Misfiring of the Cylinder

Failing Crankshaft Position Sensor Symptoms
Misfiring cylinder is a common response to sensor problems.

It’s a common response when your car experiences some crankshaft position sensor symptoms. Failing sensor cannot provide correct information about the piston position, causing one of the cylinders to misfire. An issue with the spark plug will also draw the same response. However, if the problem persists after handling all the other issues, the sensor is likely to be the culprit.

6. Stalling and Backfiring

crankshaft position sensor symptoms
The engine might be turned off suddenly

It’s another issue that indicates a malfunction of the sensor, and one of the crankshaft position sensor symptoms. In this case, your car will still run but the engine will turn off after some time. The misfiring will also occur the same way. If you keep ignoring the signs, the engine will shut off permanently.

How to test Crankshaft and Camshaft Position Sensors? Check out the video below:

If you have any question about Crankshaft Position Sensor, don’t hesitate to give us a comment in the box below, our auto experts will answer it for you. 

  1. Joe Kashiwa says

    Dear sir,

    Thanks a lot for you effort on giving us the technical know-how on finding solutions on our Vehicles.
    kindly advise on the best diagnostic machine for Japanese cars.

    Thanks in advance,


  2. Tawanda says

    Thanks for the advices also whats the best machine for japanese cars

  3. Cindy says

    I had crankshaft position sensor replaced after 1997 town and country stalled. The next day I picked up my van; the engine stalled before I left the parking lot. I had to get the crankshaft position sensor replaced; because the first crankshaft position sensor was defective. Today, similar problems again tried to start but didn’t. Start a second time, Tennessee minutes later a slight jerk in acceleration, and engine light came on, two hours later, start engine, drove and two minutes later engine stalled. Could this be same problem?

  4. Rachel Williams says

    I am reading your blog and I am really enjoying it.

    I am not car savvy and I have a weird situation.

    My Toyota Camry engine blew up the day after a service and oil leak was fixed.

    The insurance company has declined my claim. But, I think they are still related.

    They said that the failure of the engine was due to the falling out of
    the bolt securing the VTU.

    But, I have been told that bolts don’t just “fall out.”

    If you can help me, please let me know. I can send you more documentation
    and photos.

  5. RG says

    Can the crankshaft sensor get overheated and make the car not wanting to start?



  7. ivan says

    I have a bmw x5 and the signal is reading between 0 and 12 v, could be a ground issue in some cable? I get signal to high code in bank 2. should add some resistor between signal wire and ground to turn it about 5v, and retry? the car is not starting.

  8. Afroz says

    I have zd30 dd engine starts fine after starting engine revs goes up and then like after 10 seconds oh when u press the speed pedal then the idle becomes normal but engine misses and when u press the speed pedal it never crossed 2000 rpm

  9. Gabino tobias says

    I have a 1993 Jeep Cherokee sport and one night as I drove 20 minutes from my house to my buddy’s house i noticed I was low on fuel and instead of stoping at gas station I went to him first thing is that Once I got to his house I turn of my Jeep and when I tried to start it again it would not start At first I thought it was that I had no fuel after I went to get fuel in a 5 gal gas tank and put it in there still nothing so I’m just wondering what it could be the fuel pump comes on when I put the key forward . So I know is not that any suggestions on what it could be maybe a Fuel injector a bad coil or a sensor

  10. Alice Chung says

    I have a 2005 Honda Jazz with automatic transmission. Servicing has been carried out recently. There is still some 30,000 Km before the change of gear oil is due. The car has been jerking and stalling so a new crankshaft position sensor has been put. Unfortunately, the problem is still occurring. I shall most appreciate to receiving a professional help and advice. Thanks so much.

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