How to Install a Camshaft Position Sensor

Lead Image
  • 2-4 hours
  • Advanced
  • 150-300
What You'll Need
Camshaft position sensor
Breaker bar and socket

A camshaft position sensor is often situated near or around the crankshaft. This small component is an important part in the engine largely because it sends information to the on-board computer that is used to determine the speed and position of the camshaft. This, in turn, sends the necessary data to make adjustments that will increase or decrease the speed of the vehicle until the engine has reached its optimum level of performance.

Step 1 - Locating the Camshaft Position Sensor

Before you can actually install a camshaft position sensor, you will first need to know where to locate it within the engine. Fortunately, the camshaft position sensor can easily be found. Generally, the sensor is located directly next to or near the area of the camshaft. It is often situated near the top of the engine casing, which can be found near the intake or exhaust camshaft.

Since the camshaft position sensor is easily accessible without having to remove other parts of the engine, installing one will not be that difficult for a skilled DIYer.

Step 2 - Removing the Bolts and Plugs

Once you have located the old, busted camshaft position sensor, you can begin to remove it. The sensor has small bolts that hold it in place. The sensor is also connected to the fuel injection system via a plug that has two wires.

With the socket wrench, remove the bolts that are holding the camshaft position sensor in place. Make sure that you do not misplace these bolts, as you would need it to bolt the new one into place once installed. After removing the bolts, remove the plugs that connect the sensor to the car computer system. You can now remove the sensor from the casing.

Step 3 - Testing the Camshaft Position Sensor

Before you install the camshaft position sensor, make sure it works properly. To test it, connect the sensor to a multimeter and set it to the diode test function or a low-resistance setting. You then need to pass a magnet in front of the sensor. Make sure you do this several times to be sure. The reading should make significant changes to determine that the sensor is working properly.

Step 4 - Locating the Cylinder Head

Once tested, you can now start installing the sensor. Locate the cylinder head. This is where you will install the camshaft position sensor.

Step 5 - Installing the "O" Ring

You then need to place a new "O" ring on the camshaft position sensor. It is important that you lightly coat the ring with engine oil. Once you have oiled it, place it in the casing and tighten the bolts.

Step 6 - Placing the Camshaft Position Sensor

You can now attach the sensor to the electrical connector. The connector should lock in place when you plug it in. To remove it, just press the release tab.

Step 7 - Re-install the Bolts

After placing the sensor, connect it to the computer system again. Bolt the camshaft position sensor and then put the engine casing back.