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P0336 Code – What Does It Mean & How To Fix It

This is one of the most frequent OBD2 trouble codes. Read the full article below to know what it means, how to fix it, and what other codes may show related to it.

Definition

P0336 is an OBD-II Code that refers to Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit Range/Performance

Meaning

A P0336 code is caused by an ECM (Engine Control Module) receiving no proper signal from the crankshaft position sensor and is thereby unable to determine how to make necessary adjustments recorded by the crankshaft to make any necessary adjustments to the fuel injection process and ignition timing. 

Causes

Common causes for this code include:

  • Faulty wiring due to chafing through insulation caused by rubbing against other wires or engine components
  • A crankshaft position sensor connector that is broken or corroded
  • Defective Crankshaft Position Sensor (CKPS) 
  • Defective Powertrain Control Module (PCM) 
  • The reluctor wheel has teeth that have broken, cracked, or worn down.

Symptoms

The symptoms of a P0336 code are:

  • Check Engine Light on.
  • The fuel efficiency will decrease.
  • Slowing down and stalling or hesitation in the engine.
  • The car may not start at all or may begin erratically.
  • One or more cylinders may misfire

Diagnosis

To diagnose a P0336 DTC code, a technician would:

  1. Use an OBD-II scanner to read all of the faults stored by the ECM.
  2. Examine the crankshaft position sensor for obvious damage visually.
  3. Examine the wiring for breaks, burns, or shorts. Check that the sensor wires are not excessively close to the spark plug wires.
  4. Examine the connecting link for corrosion, fractures, or a loose connection.
  5. Inspect the reluctor wheel for any damage as it should not be loose
  6. Make sure there is a sufficient distance between the crankshaft position sensor and the reluctor wheel.
  7. Clear the codes and test to see if any return

Common mistakes

The following are common mistakes when diagnosing the trouble code P0336:

  • Performing a poor visual inspection
  • Expecting the code to be present when there are no symptoms
  • Not checking the reluctor wheel teeth for cracks or breakage
  • Assuming that all of the Crankshaft Position Sensors are bad. Replacing them without checking other sensor components first.

How serious is this?

A P0336 code is classified as a low frequency code. But, if there are other codes present the concern should be treated with greater attention. However, even if this code is all that is stored by the ECM this may not indicate a serious issue as long as the vehicle starts and runs smoothly without any hesitation or stalling.

If this code is present with P0300-P0302-P0316 it would indicate a misfire within multiple cylinders which can cause great damage to a car over a short period of time. 

A P0336 code does not necessarily mean that there is an expensive repair needed immediately but further investigation will need to be done at the first available opportunity to determine what exactly has caused it and how extensive any damage might be.

It should not be ignored if other codes are present as it could indicate a more serious issue with the engine that needs immediate attention.

What repairs can fix the code?

The following are solutions that may fix this problem:

  • Reluctor wheel replacement
  • Replacing the damaged crankshaft position sensor's wiring or circuitry
  • Connector damage or corrosion may be repaired or replaced
  • The wire harness connecting the crankshaft position sensor to the engine will need to be replaced or repaired.
  • Any engine malfunctions that require repair will be addressed.
  • Replacing a bad crankshaft position sensor
  • Changing a faulty camshaft position sensor
  • Changing or reprogramming the ECM

Related codes

A P0336 is related to and may be accompanied by the following codes:

  • P0335 [Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit Malfunction]
  • P0337 [Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit Low Input]
  • P0338 [Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit High Input]
  • P0339 [Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit Intermittent]

How much does it cost to fix the P0336 code?

The repair cost of a P0336 code can range anywhere from $100 for a simple repair up to $700. This is for an independent mechanic, dealership charges much more. Although there may be other factors involved in the overall cost of fixing this code, replacing the crankshaft position sensor would be one of the most expensive parts of the job.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the P0336 code is a low frequency code that usually means that the crankshaft position sensor is faulty and needs to be replaced. However, as long as there are no other codes present it may not be as serious of an issue as those with multiple cylinder misfires accompanied by this code. 

But, if P0336 is all that is stored in memory and the engine is performing well without any issues it does not necessarily mean that there is nothing wrong and can be ignored until further problems arise or if other codes are present. If the car's engine runs rough at idle speeds after starting there could also be another underlying problem unrelated to the code itself which should be addressed immediately.

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