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Replacing Your Engines Knock Sensors
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Replacing Your Engines Knock Sensors

Steve Vernon

Time:

4-8 hours

Tab:

$50 to $140

Talent:

****

Tools:

13mm wrench or socket. Torque wrench

Applicable Models:

VW GTI (2006-09)

Parts Required:

New knock sensors, intake manifold gasket

Hot Tip:

Get ready for a long day

Performance Gain:

Piece of mind on engine knock

Complementary Modification:

New injectors

There are two knock sensors on the GTI MkV and they play an important part of the engine management system. The sensors detect knock or ping in the motor which is pre detonation and can cause serious and expensive damage to the motor. If knock is detected the sensor will tell the management system of the engine to severely retard the ignition. Beside an error code you will notice a lack of power and throttle response, especially when on boost.

The sensors are easy to replace once you get access to them. If you are replacing the right side sensor (green) you can get access to it by removing the alternator and thermostat housing. Please see our articles on these procedures for further assistance. If you are removing the left side sensor you can get access to it by removing the oil cooler and housing. Please see our article on oil cooler removal for further assistance. Unfortunately the easiest and quickest way to replace both sensors is to remove the fuel rail and intake manifold. Please see our articles on how to perform this work. Note; you will need a special torque wrench to properly torque the sensors if you go this route. While some people have claimed to change them without removing the intake system I do not see how that would be possible.

Note: The knock sensors are torque sensitive and over or under torquing them will result in incorrect readings from the sensors and poor performance from the motor. The bolts must be torqued to 15 lbs.

With the intake manifold removed you can see both knock sensors.
Figure 1

With the intake manifold removed you can see both knock sensors. The sensors are located on the front of the motor under the number 2 and 4 intake runners (red arrows). The sensors can only be accessed with a wrench at this point so unless you have a tool that can torque a wrench or craw foot opening you should follow the instructions for removing the alternator and thermostat housing and the oil cooler housing. Please see our articles on those projects for additional help. I have heard of many success stories with people guessing the torque by feel but I recommend using a torque wrench.

Right Side- If you are replacing the right side sensor and remove the alternator and thermostat housing you can get access to the sensor (red arrow) with a standard torque wrench.
Figure 2

Right Side- If you are replacing the right side sensor and remove the alternator and thermostat housing you can get access to the sensor (red arrow) with a standard torque wrench. With the thermostat housing removed use a 13mm socket and remove the sensor.

Right Side- Working from below you can see the sensor connection for the right side sensor (yellow arrow, green sensor) along with the connection for the crankshaft sensor (red arrow).
Figure 3

Right Side- Working from below you can see the sensor connection for the right side sensor (yellow arrow, green sensor) along with the connection for the crankshaft sensor (red arrow).

Right Side- Slip the sensor from the mounting clip and separate the connection (red arrow).
Figure 4

Right Side- Slip the sensor from the mounting clip and separate the connection (red arrow). Installation is the reverse of removal.

Left Side- If you are removing the oil cooler mount to get access to the sensor and have followed the instructions for oil cooler removal all you will need to do from here is remove the four 13mm or 6mm Allen bolts (red arrows, three shown).
Figure 5

Left Side- If you are removing the oil cooler mount to get access to the sensor and have followed the instructions for oil cooler removal all you will need to do from here is remove the four 13mm or 6mm Allen bolts (red arrows, three shown). You will need to replace both oil cooler gasket and mount gasket if you go this route.

Left Side- With the oil filter housing you will have unfettered access to the sensor (red arrow).
Figure 6

Left Side- With the oil filter housing you will have unfettered access to the sensor (red arrow). Remove the sensor with a 13mm socket and follow the wire until it meets at the connection. Separate the brown connection (yellow arrow). Installation is the reverse of removal.

With the intake system off you can see both sensors mounted to the engine block.
Figure 7

With the intake system off you can see both sensors mounted to the engine block. From above you can see the right side sensor (red arrow), the left side sensor (yellow arrow) and the connection for the left side sensor (green arrow).

You can easily remove the right side sensor with a 13mm wrench (red arrow) but we recommend you reattach the new sensor with a torque wrench as the torque of the bolt is integral to the function of the sensor.
Figure 8

You can easily remove the right side sensor with a 13mm wrench (red arrow) but we recommend you reattach the new sensor with a torque wrench as the torque of the bolt is integral to the function of the sensor.

Working from below you can see the sensor connection for the left side sensor (yellow arrow, green sensor) a long with the connection for the crankshaft sensor (red arrow).
Figure 9

Working from below you can see the sensor connection for the left side sensor (yellow arrow, green sensor) a long with the connection for the crankshaft sensor (red arrow).

Slip the sensor from the mounting clip and separate the connection (red arrow).
Figure 10

Slip the sensor from the mounting clip and separate the connection (red arrow).

Working from above you can separate the connection for the left side sensor (red arrow).
Figure 11

Working from above you can separate the connection for the left side sensor (red arrow).

You can easily remove the left sensor with a 13mm wrench (red arrow) but we recommend you reattach the new sensor with a torque wrench as the torque of the bolt is integral to the function of the sensor.
Figure 12

You can easily remove the left sensor with a 13mm wrench (red arrow) but we recommend you reattach the new sensor with a torque wrench as the torque of the bolt is integral to the function of the sensor. Installation of both sensors is the reverse of removal.

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Page last updated: Sat 12/3/2016 02:37:37 AM