How to test a 3 pin crankshaft sensor


The tests shown in this video can be used for any 3-wire cam or crank sensor. The P code was caused by the crank sensor connector being left unplugged.

So rather than just plug the sensor back in and clear the codes, I decided to take this opportunity to show you how to test the crank sensor circuit on this car. There are two crank sensors on these early GM engines. One is a 2-wire magnetic type sensor that GM calls a 7x crank sensor.

The second is a 3-wire hall effect type sensor that GM calls a 24x crank sensor 24 pulses per degrees of crank rotation. This is the one we will be focusing on for this video. Engine Performance Diagnostics Chapter 21 pages Chapter 21 Ignition inputs, cam and crank.

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There is a 14 day free trial. You will find page for page lectures taken right from my book as well as exclusive classroom type case studies. What is so special about these classroom case studies? I pull live problem vehicles directly into my classroom and we troubleshoot them in real time, using and applying the theory and testing procedures we learn during the classroom lectures.

There is no better on-line training of how to troubleshoot automotive electrical and electronics systems anywhere! Buy The Book! YouTube Free Menu. How to test a GM 3-wire crank sensor hall effect type. Check engine light P reconnect sensor connector how to verify wiring integrity on a pull-up type hall effect using a test light and scan data how to determine hall effect circuit design pull-up or pull-down which is critical in knowing How to perform a proper bypass test: how to perform a hall-effect bypass test how to check powers and grounds to a hall effect what does a digital square wave signal look like on a digital voltmeter a frequency graph compared to the actual signature of the waveform lab scope incandescent test light scan tool end faq.

You have no rights to post comments. You are now being logged in using your Facebook credentials.Crankshaft — Camshaft Position Sensors serve essentially the same purpose as the ignition pickup and trigger wheel in an electronic distributor.

The only difference is the basic timing signal is read off the crankshaft or balancer instead of the distributor shaft. A failing Crankshaft — Camshaft Position Sensor can produce a confusing range of problems. All, depending on the type of failure and the type of car:. There are other things that can make testing the Crankshaft — Camshaft Position Sensor seem intimidating.

One, is the fact that every make and model uses a different type of Position Sensor. If your car computer has already triggered the engine light, you may retrieve the code DTC using a code reader. You may be dealing with a wire, connector, or related component failure that you can fix yourself.

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First, check the condition of the sensor electrical connector and wires. Unplug the connector and check for rust or contamination, like oil, that is interfering with good electrical contact. Then check for wire damage: broken wires, loose wires, and signs of burns caused by nearby hot surfaces. To ensure that wires live longer next time, you might want to purchase a high pressure electrical feedthrough that can withstand a variety of environments. After these checks, use a digital multimeter that can test either alternate current AC voltage or direct current DC voltage.

Depending on your particular type of Crankshaft — Camshaft Position Sensor. You may find this information in your vehicle repair manual. With some sensors, you may backprobe the wires through the sensor electrical connector. If so attach a strand of copper wire to each terminal on the connector. Another solution is to pierce through each wire using a pin. But, Be careful not to short out the wires during your tests. If you use this last method, use electrical tape to cover the pin holes on the wires.

Consequently, Preventing corrosion from creeping into the wires. For example, you may have a weakened or overstretched timing belt or timing-belt tensioner. A worn-out belt can prevent the Crankshaft — Camshaft Position Sensor from synchronizing, causing the sensor to send the wrong signal.

Electric fuel pumps are fairly simple but rely on many other systems to function properly. The Electric fuel pump is responsible for delivering pressurized fuel from the fuel tank to the engine.

How to Test a Crankshaft Position Sensor

When the ignition […]. Today, the ignition switch is a complex device that powers numerous electrical and electronic systems throughout the vehicle.Your vehicle is equipped with a crankshaft position sensor. This electrical sensor monitors and records how fast the engine crankshaft is spinning. The sensor sends the rate to the engine computer, which then synchronizes the ignition timing and fuel injection accordingly.

It's important to know how to test the sensor in case your "Check Engine" light appears. Park the vehicle and allow the engine and components to cool. This can take 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how long the vehicle was driven.

Open the hood and locate the crankshaft position sensor. The sensor is mounted on the front of the engine block to the left of the water pump, or on the main pulley by the flywheel. Refer to your repair manual for the precise location. Disconnect the sensor's electrical wire harness. Depress the two sides and pull the harness straight out of the sensor. Turn on the ohmmeter. Depending on your model, you may have to power it on or just connect it to the sensor.

Attach the ohmmeter's black wire to a grounded surface, such as the vehicle's negative battery terminal. Touch the ohmmeter's red lead to the sensor wire outlet. Refer to your repair manual for the acceptable resistance value range for your make and model vehicle. For example, in a GM 2. Read the ohmmeter and determine if the value registered on the tool is within the acceptable range for your vehicle.

If not, the sensor is faulty and should be replaced. This article was written by the It Still Works team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.

To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Works, contact us. Step 1 Park the vehicle and allow the engine and components to cool.

Step 2 Open the hood and locate the crankshaft position sensor.

How to Test a Crankshaft Position Sensor with a Scanner or Multimeter

Step 3 Disconnect the sensor's electrical wire harness. Items you will need Repair manual. About the Author This article was written by the It Still Works team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.There are a number of common symptoms of a bad crankshaft position sensor CKP that can help you determine if your sensor has failed, including engine misfires, rough idling, stalling, or hard starting.

If you are experiencing problems like these, you might need to replace your crankshaft position sensor. However, these same symptoms can be caused by problems with your ignition or fuel injection systems, too. So before you replace your crankshaft position sensor, you might want to run some tests to determine that the crank sensor really is the source of the problem.

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Here is how to test a crankshaft position sensor with or without a code:. If your check engine light is on, then your engine control unit ECU has recorded some sort of trouble code. You can check onboard diagnostic trouble codes with a diagnostic scan tool. Codes between P and P correspond to crankshaft sensor problems. This is probably the most straightforward and the most certain way to test for and identify a crankshaft sensor problem.

Unfortunately, the crankshaft sensor is usually pretty worn by the time that the check engine light is on. You might already be experiencing crankshaft sensor problems before the ECU has noted any sign of trouble. If you want to be proactive, there is some other testing you can do.

This next crank sensor testing technique also uses a diagnostic scan tool. One of the settings of the scanner allows you to read the engine speed in revolutions per minute RPM.

Now, can you guess where the scanner gets that information from? If you guessed the crankshaft position sensor, then you would be correct. Set up the scanner to read engine RPM and crank the engine. The scan tool should read between and RPM. A bad reading indicates that the crankshaft sensor isn't working right.

A reading of zero indicates that the crankshaft sensor has failed completely.

how to test a 3 pin crankshaft sensor

Of course, not everyone has access to a scan tool although they can sometimes be rented from parts storesbut there are a few ways you can test a bad crankshaft position sensor with one.

A multimeter is a more common tool and a very useful one for diagnosing many electronic components in your vehicle. A multimeter can measure voltage, current, and resistance. You can remove the sensor, and then test the resistance. Attach one end of the multimeter to each wiring lead of the sensor.If your car engine fails to start properly, there could be a problem with the crankshaft position sensor.

The crankshaft position sensor measures the crankshaft position and speed. To test if it your crankshaft position sensor is working properly, you have to test the voltage output. Once that is done, you can compare the readings with manufacturer specifications. If the voltmeter is equipped with needle probes, the wires at the sensor connector need to be back probed.

Set a digital multimeter to the AC minivolts range and crank the engine.

How to Check Your Crankshaft Sensor With an Ohmmeter

A normal reading would be mV, but again this should be matched with manufacturer specifications. Set the meter to ohms and check the resistance with what is specified in the service manual.

If the test results are within specifications, you should check the sensor's electrical connector and the wiring harness. The trigger wheel located on the crankshaft or damper could have damaged or missing teeth.

how to test a 3 pin crankshaft sensor

Any of these components could trigger a crankshaft position sensor to trouble code. Completing the above tests thoroughly will let you know if the crankshaft position sensor is working or not. If it's not working, it's time to make some repairs.

how to test a 3 pin crankshaft sensor

We welcome your comments and suggestions. All information is provided "AS IS. All rights reserved. You may freely link to this site, and use it for non-commercial use subject to our terms of use. View our Privacy Policy here. Toggle navigation subscribe. How to Test a Crankshaft Position Sensor. Written by Purva Bhandari. To ensure our content is always up-to-date with current information, best practices, and professional advice, articles are routinely reviewed by industry experts with years of hands-on experience.

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I have a Murray riding mower, Read More. Briggs counterbalance shaft. Hii had to open my briggs engine 25MF1its on a arien sn Does a s 10 blazer 4. Related Posts Crankshaft Tolerances. Hopefully someone can clear this up. My crankshaft is on the bench for my Briggs crankshaft diameter. If anyone has a Briggs spec sheet and can tell me crank diameter on a 15A How to TEST my thermostat.

How to test transfer case. I bought a beater truck for property hauling.Dan Ferrell writes about do-it-yourself car maintenance and repair. He has certifications in automation and control technology. Coil 2. Soft iron 3. Magnet 4. Electrical connector. Photo courtesy of Tamasflex on Wikimedia. Depending on your particular vehicle make and model, a failing or bad CKP can produce one or more of the following symptoms:.

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However, problems in other systems for example the fuel or ignition systems can also produce some of the same symptoms. So, it is important to test the CKP to better diagnose the problem.

Although it's recommended to test a CKP sensor using an oscilloscope, this is not a common tool for many car owners or DIYers. Still, you can troubleshoot the sensor using a digital multimeter DMMwhether your engine uses an inductive or Hall effect type sensor. That's what you'll do here using this guide. Keep in mind, though, that you still need the electrical values for your particular vehicle make and model, to locate the sensor, identify wires, and, if necessary, replace it.

You can find this information in your vehicle repair manual. If you don't have this manual yet, you can get a relatively inexpensive aftermarket copy through Amazon. Haynes manuals come with many images and step-by-step maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting projects for many systems in your vehicle.

So you'll recoup the small investment in no time. The CKP sensor monitors crankshaft position and engine speed. Photo courtesy of Alex Kovach on Wikimedia. In general, the CKP monitors piston movement and crankshaft position.

It also helps the computer monitor engine misfires and engine speed. The computer uses this information to adjust ignition timing and fuel injection. However, a CKP sensor endures heat and vibration during engine operation. This eventually takes its toll and the sensor or its circuit may fail.

As with other emission related sensors, the car's computer may store a diagnostic trouble code DTC pointing to a problem with the CKP sensor, or the sensor's circuit, like:. So it is important to troubleshoot the CKP when you suspect CKP problems to make sure the problem is with the sensor, the circuit, or one of the components in the system it works with. The next sections will help you test your CKP sensor using only a digital multimeter DMMwhether your engine uses an inductive or Hall effect type sensor.You may experience a loss of power in the engine, misfiring, and there may be no spark while starting the engine.

In many cases, a car can be driven with a faulty sensor but it should not as it leads to more danger only. Leaving untreated means, you would end up with expensive repairs, and the engine can get permanent damage as well.

Well, testing the sensors is the way out once you find out the right category.

how to test a 3 pin crankshaft sensor

By category, it means whether it is a 2 wire type of 3. You can check out by seeing the connector if it includes two or three wires.

In the two wire system — the magnetic type, you need to do the resistance test first. Take the multi meter and set it to AC volts. Check for the connector as well and make sure no dirt or mud is in there. Continuing to the crank position sensor testask someone to turn the ignition key on; do not start the engine.

Now, take the probe or the metal part and touch it to the ground whereas the other one with the sensor wires.


If you see the current flowing on, it is a good sign. Now start the engine again, and this time, check for the signal. Take the probes and get them to any of the sensor wires and touch the other one to the other wire. The reader will display the result, and here it needs to match with the manual specifications. If there is a signal, you are good to go; otherwise, it requires maintenance. For more tips, explore the Maintenance Tips section.

Now, come to the three wire signal crankshaft position sensor test if this is what you have. Identify three of the wires first for being the power, ground, and signal wires. Use your vehicle repair manual, and you would be able to distinguish the three wires easily.

This time, take the multi meter and set DC volts there. Similarly, turn the ignition key on without turning on the engine.

How to Test a Crankshaft Position Sensor Using a Multimeter

You get the black probe that you need to touch to the ground and the other one to the power wire. The reading will show up that needs to match with the specification as written in your manual. Start the engine. Take the signal wire to touch with the red probe and the ground wire to the black probe. If the readings are lower than the mentioned specification, it is a bad sensor.

Click here!!! Do not drive with a malfunctioning Crankshaft and Camshaft Position Sensors.