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Pelican Technical Article:

Camshaft Position Sensor Replacement

Jared Fenton

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$65

Talent:

*****

Tools:

Strap wrench, 18mm socket, 6mm hex driver, torque wrench

Applicable Models:

VW Jetta GL (1999-05)
VW Jetta GLS (1999-05)
VW Jetta Wolfsburg (1999)

Parts Required:

Camshaft position sensor

Hot Tip:

Make sure you torque the retaining bolt correctly

Performance Gain:

Better running engine

Complementary Modification:

Replace timing belt

The camshaft position sensor plays an important part in the operation of the fuel injection and ignition systems on the car. It is used to give the vehicle's computer a reference point for the timing of the camshaft. This in turn allows the fuel injection and ignition systems to operate correctly.

A failing cam sensor can cause rough running, poor throttle response and in some cases will prevent the engine from running altogether. When a cam sensor fails, it usually triggers a fault code related to the sensor that isn't working correctly. You'll need to use a diagnostic scanner, such as VAG-COM to read the fault code, determine if it is bad and then determine your next course of action.

Replacing the sensor is a bit of a chore, as it is located behind the camshaft timing gear. This requires you to remove the timing belt. Please see our article on Timing Belt Replacement for more information.

The first step in replacing the cam sensor is to remove the camshaft timing gear.
Figure 1

The first step in replacing the cam sensor is to remove the camshaft timing gear. VW makes a special tool (VW part number 3415) to hold the timing gear stationary while you loosen and remove the 18mm retaining bolt (green arrow). I found that you could also hold the gear in place with a stout strap wrench as shown here. Once the bolt is removed, pull the timing gear off the end of the camshaft. When re-installing the gear, torque the bolt to 100Nm (73 ft/lbs.).

Shown here is the backside of the timing gear.
Figure 2

Shown here is the backside of the timing gear. Note the gaps (green arrows) on the collar. The camshaft position sensor works by detecting these gaps via a magnetic field. It is crucial that you do not bend or damage the collar when removing or installing the gear.

Press the tab on the backside of the electrical connector (green arrow) to the camshaft position sensor and pull it off.
Figure 3

Press the tab on the backside of the electrical connector (green arrow) to the camshaft position sensor and pull it off.

Now remove the 6mm hex bolt (green arrow) and remove the cam position sensor assembly from the cylinder head.
Figure 4

Now remove the 6mm hex bolt (green arrow) and remove the cam position sensor assembly from the cylinder head. It is also a good idea to inspect the camshaft seal (purple arrow) for any leaks. If it is leaking, you should replace it at the same time. Also note the notch on the end of the camshaft. This lines up with a slot on the backside of the timing gear, preventing you from installing it incorrectly.

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Page last updated: Fri 11/17/2017 03:21:50 AM