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M62 8-Cylinder Engine Camshaft Sensor Testing
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

M62 8-Cylinder Engine Camshaft Sensor Testing

Nick Czerula

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$60

Talent:

*****

Tools:

DVOM, backprobes, Sockets, 5mm Allen, 10mm, flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

BMW X5 Sport Utility (2000-06)

Parts Required:

Camshaft sensor, sealing O-ring

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Remedy fault codes

Complementary Modification:

Replace sensors in pairs

The camshaft position sensor is used to synchronize fuel injection and as a feedback device for VANOS (variable camshaft timing) control. When a camshaft sensor fails, the check engine light will illuminate and a fault code will be stored. I have seen faulty sensors cause engine stalling and poor engine drivability. If you have a camshaft sensor fault code and your engine isn't running right, I suggest replacing the sensor before digging too deep.

When you are dealing with camshaft position fault codes, be sure to test the sensor and confirm it is faulty. Other items could also set a camshaft position fault code, for example a dirty or defective VANOS solenoid or unit, faulty camshaft timing or a wiring issue. The camshaft sensors are Hall Effect sensors. This means they create a digital signal depending on the position of the camshaft sprocket, which is equipped with a reluctor wheel. If you have a fault code for one bank of the engine and are unsure if your readings are correct, you can compare your test results to the good sensor on the opposite bank.

Remove the engine covers. See our tech article on engine cover removing.

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with testing the camshaft position sensors on BMW E53 models with an M62 8-cylinder engine.
Figure 1

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with testing the camshaft position sensors on BMW E53 models with an M62 8-cylinder engine. Be sure to work with a cool engine. The intake camshaft sensors are located at the timing cover (green arrows). On M62 TU engines, there is also an exhaust sensor, located in the timing cover, a little lower (yellow arrow). Our subject vehicle only has intake sensors. We will show you how to test them. The procedure for a vehicle with exhaust sensors is similar.

Using a BMW scan tool, read the fault codes to identify which sensor requires testing (green arrow).
Figure 2

Using a BMW scan tool, read the fault codes to identify which sensor requires testing (green arrow). Bank 1 is the right side of the engine, bank 2 is the left side of the engine.

First we have to remove the intake air duct that runs from the throttle housing (yellow arrow) to the mass air flow sensor (green arrow).
Figure 3

First we have to remove the intake air duct that runs from the throttle housing (yellow arrow) to the mass air flow sensor (green arrow).

Working at the fresh air intake, remove the four plastic rivets (green arrows).
Figure 4

Working at the fresh air intake, remove the four plastic rivets (green arrows). Use a pair of pliers (inset) to remove the center rivet, Once all center rivets have been removed, pull the duct up to detach it from the vehicle.

Then lift the duct up on the left side while detaching it from the duct (green arrow) on the right side.
Figure 5

Then lift the duct up on the left side while detaching it from the duct (green arrow) on the right side.

Working at the mass air flow sensor, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).
Figure 6

Working at the mass air flow sensor, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).

Working at the throttle housing duct, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).
Figure 7

Working at the throttle housing duct, loosen the hose clamp using a flathead screwdriver (green arrow).

Next, you will have to rotate the throttle housing duct up toward the left side of the vehicle in the direction of the green arrow.
Figure 8

Next, you will have to rotate the throttle housing duct up toward the left side of the vehicle in the direction of the green arrow. This will detach it from the mass air flow sensor. Once detached from the mass air flow sensor, pull the duct off the throttle housing. There are two small hoses you have to disconnect in the following step. Be careful not to damage them during this step.

Working at the bottom of the intake air duct, detach the plastic line by squeezing the release collar (green arrows) while pulling the line off the duct.
Figure 9

Working at the bottom of the intake air duct, detach the plastic line by squeezing the release collar (green arrows) while pulling the line off the duct. Then pull the vacuum hose (yellow arrow) straight off the duct to remove it.

The sensor is mounted in the timing cover (yellow arrow) and the wiring harness runs up and over the timing cover to the electrical junction box (green arrow).
Figure 10

The sensor is mounted in the timing cover (yellow arrow) and the wiring harness runs up and over the timing cover to the electrical junction box (green arrow).

Locate the camshaft sensor electrical connector (green arrow).
Figure 11

Locate the camshaft sensor electrical connector (green arrow). Peel back the sealing boot to expose the wiring. This will expose the three wires that require testing. Here are the pins on my vehicle: Pin 1: supply battery volts RED wire. Pin 2 - signal 12 volts. GREEN wire. Pin 3: ground 0.1 volts BROWN wire. The wiring colors and DME terminal locations may vary. Check your model against a current wiring diagram.

Turn the Key ON, but do not start the engine.
Figure 12

Turn the Key ON, but do not start the engine. Connect your DVOM black lead to the battery negative and place the DVOM on D/C volts. The red lead will be used to probe the electrical connector. Insert a backprobe into terminal 2, the middle terminal. Then connect the red lead of your DVOM to the backprobe. Rotate the engine clockwise by hand using a 22mm socket and ratchet on the crankshaft pulley bolt. Monitor the DVOM for voltage to fluctuate from 12 volts to zero volts as the engine rotates. If voltage stays at 12 volts or 0 volts while you rotate the engine and does not fluctuate, the sensor is faulty. The sensor voltage should cycle twice per engine revolution ( 0-12 volts, then 0-12 volts again, per full engine rotation).

This photo shows the left side electrical connector (green arrow).
Figure 13

This photo shows the left side electrical connector (green arrow). When disconnected, the terminals from the DME are exposed. The center pin (yellow arrow) is the signal reference voltage. The outside terminals may vary depending on bank of engine.

You can also test the sensor with it removed from the engine.
Figure 14

You can also test the sensor with it removed from the engine. Turn the Key ON, but do not start the engine. Remove the sensor from the engine. See our tech article on camshaft sensor replacing. Remember when removing the camshaft sensor you will have to replace the fastener after you remove it. Connect your DVOM black lead to the battery negative and place the DVOM on D/C volts. The red lead will be used to probe the electrical connector. Insert a backprobe into terminal 2, the middle terminal. Then connect the red lead of your DVOM to the backprobe. Hold the sensor while moving a wrench across the tip. Monitor the DVOM. The voltage should fluctuate just as it should when rotating the engine by hand. In this photo, the wrench (green arrow) is away from the sensor (yellow arrow), so the DVOM reads 12 volts.

In this photo, the wrench (green arrow) is close to the sensor (yellow arrow), so the DVOM reads close to 0 volts.
Figure 15

In this photo, the wrench (green arrow) is close to the sensor (yellow arrow), so the DVOM reads close to 0 volts. If you have a fault code for one bank of the engine and are unsure if your readings are correct, you can compare your test results to the good sensor on the opposite bank.

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Page last updated: Sat 12/3/2016 02:25:01 AM