What To Do After Replacing Camshaft Sensor (Further Explained)

If you happen to own a car, chances are there will come a time when you have to remove the malfunctioned camshaft sensor and put in a new one. In that case, does it ever cross your mind what to do after replacing camshaft sensor? Would you leave it in the engine, or do you have to get it checked by mechanics? 

Worry not. Let’s learn about the ins and outs of camshaft sensor replacement in this article and see for yourself!

What Is A Camshaft Sensor?

A camshaft sensor refers to a mechanical detail placed inside the car. It is used to monitor the position and speed of the camshaft and crankshaft, and transfers the collected data to the car’s engine control module (ECM). 

While it sounds rather straightforward, the job is actually far more complicated. A camshaft sensor must ensure the flow of data so that ECM can adjust the amount of fuel and spark timing accordingly.

So why is a properly functioning camshaft sensor vital to the vehicle?

Simply enough, the sensor provides ECM with enough information to get the car started, increase the engine power, minimize the fuel needed, and also the exhaustive emissions. Without it, the car will not be able to run.

What To Do After Replacing The Camshaft Sensor?

Once you have replaced the camshaft sensor, check up on the connection and mounting bolt. If they are not wired correctly, then the gadget is not fully installed. Next up, connect your code reader, clear codes, and start the car again. Should the sensor be placed correctly, there will be a PASS running on the screen of the code scanner.

How To Spot A Failing Camshaft Sensor?

Inconsistent performance

If your car cannot turn on immediately after starting the engine, it is the first sign of trouble. You will notice several symptoms along the line, including slower acceleration, power failure, sputter, etc. It is because the camshaft sensor does not deliver the data to the ECM instantly, slowing the entire process.

Failure to start

If the signal from the camshaft sensor cannot get to the car’s computer, you may expect to struggle with the car engine. As there is no spark from the ignition, your car will not be able to work properly.

Stalling midway

When the ECM wrongly calculates the amount of fuel necessary to fill the combustion chamber, the cylinders will not have enough energy to run on. Imagine you are on the highway, and suddenly your car stops altogether. That is an obvious indication of the marred camshaft sensor.

“Check Engine” light is on

If something is wrong with your car, the “Check Engine” light on the dashboard will light up. However, various factors can illuminate the “Check Engine,” so you might want to double-check everything else besides the camshaft sensor to make sure your car is in good condition.

Reminder: Since the “Check Engine” light can be translated into many different scenarios, many drivers attribute the light to some minor issue and assure themselves that it will turn off eventually. It might be true sometimes, but in other cases, there are serious problems going on with your engine. Therefore, do not shy away from examining it on your own or bring it to a garage for an overall checkup. 

Further watching: Most common reasons why the “Check Engine” light comes on.

Uncontrolled fuel consumption

As the camshaft sensor does not transfer accurate data to the ECM, the fuel injectors may end up filling more fuel than needed into the combustion chamber. Not only does it cost you more expense on gas stations, but it also subjects your car to internal damages when fuel accumulates.

Sudden car movements 

Have you ever felt your car surge forward out of nowhere or noticed some jerkings when driving? Most of these movements result directly from the under/overfilled cylinders and could be tracked all the way back to a failing camshaft sensor.

Slower acceleration

Another warning sign drivers need to pay attention to is the car’s acceleration. However hard you press on the gas pedal, your car cannot seem to speed up at all. Once again, this is due to the fuel available.

Shifting problems

Sometimes, a marred camshaft sensor locks the gear lever in a single gear and prevents drivers from shifting the transmission. The only way out of this dilemma is to shut down the car and restart it, which is not always possible.

Read more: How To Reset Camshaft Position Sensor No Start (5 Detailed Steps)


1. Can a car run with no camshaft sensor?

No. Lacking a camshaft sensor means there is no data transfer between the camshaft and the ECM, leaving the car’s computer completely without signals.

2. Is it bad to drive with a bad camshaft sensor?

Technically, you can still drive a car even if its camshaft sensor is having problems. Nevertheless, you might have to go through many issues on the road. Anything from failure to start to car stalling can happen. In worse cases, you have to drive at a fixed speed or experience sudden jerks. All of these can compromise the safety of not only yourself but also other people.

3. How much does it cost to replace a camshaft sensor?

A camshaft sensor per se is relatively cheap since you can get one for no more than $100. If you can install it yourself, all you have to pay for is the gadget itself. But if you need help from a mechanic, expect a total bill from $50 to $200 depending on your car model.

4. How many camshaft sensors are there in a car?

Ideally, you should have four camshaft sensors to support all four camshafts inside your vehicle. If you do not know which one is a camshaft sensor, check out this article on how to identify unknown camshaft.


Now that you have finished our guidelines, we hope you know what to do after replacing camshaft sensor. Remember to check on it regularly to make sure your car is functioning properly and save it from any accident in the future. 

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