Mazda 6 Cam Sensor Problems – The camshaft sensor (also called the variable camshaft timing sensor or the VCT sensor) for the Mazda 6 is located near the intake manifold of the engine, at one of the four corners.
The camshaft sensor’s job is to monitor and control the variable camshaft timing or VCT, which in turn controls the opening and closing of the intake and exhaust valves on your Mazda 6’s engine.
Just like any other part of your vehicle, the Mazda 6 cam sensor can malfunction and cause your vehicle to misbehave.
Whether you’re having engine performance issues, or your car simply won’t start, there are several things you can do to troubleshoot and repair this problem.
Here’s everything you need to know about fixing Mazda 6 cam sensor problems yourself.
What is a Camshaft Sensor?
A camshaft sensor is a sensor that monitors the position of the camshaft. This part is linked to the engine control unit (ECU) and monitors how fast the engine is running, where it’s idling, and what gear it’s in.
The ECU uses this information to make adjustments so everything runs smoothly. When a camshaft sensor breaks down, there are a number of symptoms: your Mazda 6 parking sensors not working, your Mazda 6 blind spot monitoring system not working.
Or if you notice that your car just doesn’t run right anymore and you’re having trouble turning on the ignition or shifting gears.
If any of these symptoms show up after replacing a faulty sensor or installing a new one, then you might have an issue with the wiring.
Why is my car sensor not working?
The camshaft sensor is one of the most common reasons for people wondering why their car sensor not working.
The camshaft sensor tells the vehicle computer when it’s time to switch from opening a valve at low RPMs and closing it at high RPMs.
When this valve is broken, a number of things can happen including poor fuel mileage, an engine misfire, or stalling in stop-and-go traffic.
The best thing you can do if you’re wondering why your car sensor not working is to have your mechanic replace the camshaft position (CMP) or Crankshaft Position (CKP) sensors.
These sensors will help with whatever your current issues are with misfires, idle problems, or engine lights on.
What are the symptoms of a bad camshaft sensor?
As you drive your Mazda, it is going to have a certain cadence of engine speeds. A good cam sensor will respond and change the timing for this cycle, but when the sensor breaks down, it will stop firing and the ignition cycle can stall.
This can cause the car’s engine light to come on due to misfires and if your check engine light is on already, there is a high chance that a bad cam sensor may be at fault. So what are the symptoms of a bad cam sensor?
Well, a number of things can lead up to something as catastrophic as this failure including grime and oil in your engine causing the connector pins within the wiring harness for your dashboard control module or elsewhere within your vehicles such as near an intake manifold or exhaust pipe.
Read also: Mazda 6 Key FOB Battery Problems
Can I drive with a bad cam sensor?
While there are many reasons your camshaft sensor might break down, the most common is overheating.
So, you’ll know if this is your problem if you notice a lack of heat in the car, or feel a very hot engine. Can I drive with a bad cam sensor? Yes, but only for an hour or so.
This would be to get the car off the road and into a shop as soon as possible. In other words, this will give you a little bit of time before everything goes kaput.
Keep in mind that driving with a broken camshaft sensor will cause engine damage because oil pressure is interrupted by the broken sensor that usually regulates it.
What Happens When Your Cam Sensor Fails?
In the case of a bad cam sensor, you will likely notice that your car is experiencing problems starting, the engine light may be on, or it may not accelerate.
So what can you do if you notice these symptoms? The first step is to have your mechanic check the problem out.
They will then need to diagnose what type of sensor failure it is and let you know if they have any parts in stock.
If they don’t have the right one in stock, then they will order it for you and let you know when it arrives.
Signs That Your Car Needs a New Camshaft Sensor
There are a number of reasons that your camshaft sensor might break down. These include grime and oil in the engine, water damage, bad wiring, and overheating.
You can identify when your camshaft sensor is going bad by noticing any of these symptoms: rough running engine, slow acceleration, hesitation, or stalling at intersections or on hills.
If you have any of these problems with your car then you should check for a new camshaft sensor as soon as possible.
The Symptoms of Bad Connections or Wiring
What are the symptoms of a bad cam sensor? The most common sign that your camshaft sensor is going bad is an engine code P0302, which indicates that the car’s computer has detected a problem with the crankshaft position sensor.
Another symptom of a bad cam sensor is if the engine suddenly shuts off while you’re driving. If this happens, it’s important to stop the car as soon as possible and contact a mechanic right away.
Replacing the Camshaft Sensor Yourself
If you’re driving with a bad cam sensor and the symptoms are severe, then it is best to get it replaced by a professional. If not, take these steps:
First off, remove the old sensor from your car by unscrewing it. Make sure that you have an oil-free rag handy so you can wipe away any leftover grime or oil residue.
Next, clean the area of your engine where you will be installing the new sensor with a waterless degreaser.
You want this area to be completely free of any grease or dirt because this will help increase the lifespan of your new sensor.
Replacing the Ignition Coils
Ignition coils are known to fail, and when they do the car will lose power. Replacing these coils is a simple task that can be done by anyone with little know-how.
The first step is to remove the old ignition coil from the engine bay by disconnecting the connectors on each end of it, followed by removing the coil from the bracket.
Then all you need to do is install your new ignition coil and make sure that it’s tight in its bracket before reconnecting both ends of the connector.
If you have any questions about installing ignition coils then contact your local auto parts store for more information.
Read also: New Car Maintenance Tips
Camshaft sensor problems can be a pain, but they’re not impossible to fix. They tend to happen because of water damage.
So keep your car well-maintained and try not to go driving through deep puddles or get your engine wet.
If you do happen to get the sensor wet, then it’s best to replace it as soon as possible you don’t want it to get any dirtier.
Mazda 6 cam sensor problems are caused by either a wiring problem or an overheated engine, in these cases, all you need is some tightening with wrenches and adjusting of wires respectively.
You might also consider checking the oil and grime levels, if they’re high, then that could be causing the camshaft sensor issues too.