How to Replace a Crankshaft Position Sensor
So, you have finished testing your current crankshaft position sensor, and you have determined that it has indeed failed. Now, you need to replace it. Having your crankshaft position sensor replaced by a mechanic can get pretty expensive. How much it will cost exactly for both parts and labor can vary greatly from one model to another, and from one mechanic to another. The same holds true for a dealership. The cost of the crank sensor itself and the labor it will require to replace it will vary, and there are some crank sensors that cannot be replaced outside of the dealer because special tools are needed to program them. If your vehicle's crankshaft sensor doesn't fall into this category, this is a repair that you can do yourself!
While the crankshaft position sensor is a pretty sophisticated piece of equipment, and you might be intimidated by the idea of replacing it yourself, you probably shouldn't be. With a good set of instructions, the right tools, and some effort, you can replace your crankshaft sensor yourself. The cost of replacing the crank sensor will be much less if you do it yourself rather than take it elsewhere for someone else to do the repair, as you'll only be paying for the cost of parts, and not labor. In addition, 1A Auto carries a large selection of high quality, replacement crankshaft position sensors for many makes and models, and at a great price, to help you save even more money with this repair.
Sensors do vary from one vehicle to another, so you should track down a set of instructions specific to your model. That being said, many elements of replacing a crankshaft sensor remain the same. What follows are some general instructions that will give you a pretty good idea of how the process works.
First of all, the crankshaft position sensor is an electrical part. For safety's sake, you should disconnect the negative battery cable before beginning this job. The next step will be to locate and access the crankshaft position sensor.In many cases, the sensor is mounted into the timing cover on the front of the engine.Sometimes it is mounted to the transmission bell cover, and sometimes it is mounted to the side of the engine. You may have to remove some other parts before you can reach the sensor. If the sensor is mounted at the front of the engine, you might have to remove the serpentine belt and the crankshaft pulley.If it is mounted to the transmission, you'll have to remove the starter motor. In short, take out anything that's getting in between you and the sensor.
Most crankshaft position sensors have three wires: an input, an output, and a ground.The sensor won't work if these aren't connected correctly, so you'll want to make a note of which wire goes where before you disconnect them. You might want to take a photo, draw yourself a diagram, or use tape and a marker to label the wires. Then, you can disconnect them.
The sensor is held in place with one or two bolts. Remove them and you can pull the sensor off. If the sensor doesn't slide out easily you may have to pry it out. Be very careful when doing so, since scratching the engine block might result in a bad fit when you put the new sensor into place. A door panel clip removal tool can actually be helpful here.
At this point, you're ready to install the new sensor. Connect the wires in the same order as the corresponding wires of the old sensor. Then put the new sensor into place and install the mounting bolt. Then, you just need to replace any parts you removed to access the sensor. If, after replacement, you find that your engine still won't start, then double check that the sensor is wired correctly.
Again, the procedure for replacing a crankshaft position sensor varies from one car to another, but these tips should give you a general idea of how the job is done.