Throwing a Crankshaft Position Sensor code - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-04-2015, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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Throwing a Crankshaft Position Sensor code

I've just acquired a new to me '96, and it came to me throwing a Crankshaft Position Sensor code.

Needless to say, I need to get this fixed ASAP, and I can't afford to pay someone else to fix it. (nor would I, even if I could afford it)

I need some kind of guide to get me going here. I got rid of my 92 Bronco to get this, and I've always been a Ford kind of guy, but I am THRILLED to have this RAV4 to be my daily driver.

Any help to get this running top notch?

Thanks guys!

-Anafiel
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-06-2015, 02:13 PM
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I would try to find a set of factory shop manuals to start. Including the Electrical book.
Then a Haynes shop manual often helps, they have a different view from Toyota.

Then after reading the manuals for a project I like to go online and see if anyone has posted any tips about this repair.

The factory manuals are good to show how everything fits together; while, the specs, tips and test are often included.
The aftermarket manuals are written more for the amateurs.
While youtube and online can sometimes show real world solutions with a better way of doing a repair.

Good luck and have fun!

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AWD & LSD with Moon Roof. Power Everything, except the manual Leather Seats and Transmission.
Selectable DRL, Inactive ABS, In-dash CB with Wilson roof-mount antenna, Clearance 10'8".
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 11:05 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I got this issue fixed. I found a Toyota official diagnostics flowchart and error code definitions, and found that the AutoZone and Firestone readings of the code were wrong.

My error code was actually a camshaft position sensor code, which according to the Toyota procedures, I needed to swap out the distributor. I got me a used tested unit, got a new cap and rotor, and installed it yesterday.

After pulling the EFI fuse from the fuseblock under the hood, and letting the car sit for 15 min., the CEL went out for good (so far).

Car runs MUCH better now, as the cap and rotor from the old dist looked to be the dang one the car came with new. All four posts has deep groves burnt into them, and the center contact was worn flat.

So, last thing to address is an ignition issue that persists.

Question. The factory specs on the primary coil winding state 0.36 - 0.55 ohms at 10 - 50 deg C. I get .84 when I just tested. Secondary winding tests out just fine at 13.6 K.

Would that suggest a bad coil?

The high-tension wires are also well within specs.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 11:08 AM Thread Starter
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Hey Moderator, if this isn't the right forum to post this in, could you move this thread to the right one? Thanks!
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 02:14 PM
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Hey Moderator, if this isn't the right forum to post this in, could you move this thread to the right one? Thanks!
Moved thread to 4.1 Faults & Fixes.

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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 03:49 PM Thread Starter
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Nope, after the third run cycle, the CEL came back.

I'm wondering ECU at this point?

This car has a new crankshaft position sensor, a new (used) tested dist, new fuel filter, wires tested fine, reportedly a new fuel pump, checked ALL connectors, tested coil.

The coil is still a question for me. Is .84 ohms enough out of spec to be considered a problem component? The main complaint is cruising along fine and them seemingly I lose spark. I bog down for a second or two, and then it catches again. it's worse at times, and other times it runs just fine. When the problem presents, especially under load, I can turn the key off for just s split second, turn it back on and everything runs fine again for a minuet or two. Then it starts acting up again.

Considering that I have to drive 60 miles each day to work and back, this is a ROYAL pain in the backside.

Any ideas?
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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FYI.

When I got the car, I found a fuel filter box under the seat. In it was what appeared to be a used crankshaft position sensor. I verified it was in fact at the parts store. Also in the box was a receipt for a new CPS and fuel filter. I have to assume that the previous owner had installed a new fuel filter (it looks new in the engine bay), and a new crankshaft position sensor.

I think the previous owner was throwing parts at the current CEL and performance issues. Just like I did with the new distributor.

Over the last few days I've come across some awesome RAV4 manuals, and tonight I checked over everything I've done so far, and tested all the sensors/parts I have either in the car, or out of it.

The old crankshaft position tested good at 1450 ohms cold (Resistance Cold 985 - 1600 ohms), pickup coil in the old dist measures 178 ohms cold (Cold: 135 - 220 Ohms), so the dist is/was good. The dist I just installed was tested before installation.

So now I have a spare crankshaft position sensor, and a spare distributor base with a good sensor in it. Wires have been tested and verified to be within factory specs. I plan to change plugs tomorrow, but they should not explain the issues I have above.

I can not account for the CEL, and code P0336.

Is the coil far enough out of spec at 0.84 ohms to be a factor? Am I dealing with a possible bad ECM?

Thanks.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 09:19 PM
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Without having the vehicle in my bay, I am only guessing.


ECUs rarely fail on Toyota, except for the trans shifting issue on certain models.


Sometimes a jumped chain/timing belt will cause a cam sensor code.


I recently read about this exact problem in a trade publication. . The writer did a full tune with a new ignition coil for maintenance reasons. After the work was done, the engine misfired at certain RPMs and set a cam sensor code (not sure of the code). Hours were spent trying to find the problem. The new ignition coil was the problem. An ignition coil generates a magnetic field, and a cam sensor code can be caused by a poor quality ignition coil because they reside so close together. The writer in the magazine said it was a brand new aftermarket coil. He bought an OEM Toyota coil and the cam sensor code and misfire went away. He found this by scoping the cam sensor signal, and saw noise riding along with the cam sensor signal.


But what doesn't make sense is that this is a different ignition coil in a different distributor. For both coils to cause the same issue is not common. Did you perhaps swap the coil from your distributor to the replacement?


If this were my vehicle, I would replace the ignition coil with a DENSO or OEM Toyota part ONLY.

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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 09:49 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you so much for your thoughts on this!

The ignition coil sits on the firewall, center left, with the ignitor. The camshaft sensor pickup is part of the distributor, which is why I had to replace the whole unit. Different sensors, same code.

As I said, the old sensor tested in spec, but all I have to go on is my ohm meter. It's a good one though, Fluke 77III Multimeter. But I'm thinking you feel that the ignition coil might be causing the performance issue anyways?

-Anafiel
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 10:01 PM Thread Starter
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Another thought. When the vehicle runs fine, it does so across the whole RPM range. Low end and high end just the same. It's a pleasure to drive until the loss of spark starts up. I say loss of spark, because that's what it feels like. Fuel starvation would be more of a sputter type thing, but this is a total loss of fire for a couple of seconds.

Like I said, if I flick off the ignition key, even for the tiniest of split second, the cutting out will quit for a little while...usually. It's like rebooting your computer when it starts acting up. It just kinda 'feels' electrically based, not fuel based.

A seat of your pants kind of thing, yeah? LOL!

-Anafiel
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