Throttle Position Sensor

Throttle-position-sensor

It’s a beautiful Sunday morning and you're getting ready to take a drive down to your favorite spot for breakfast. You turn on the car and pull off the driveway when suddenly your car starts jerking like a wild mechanical bull! You notice that your vehicle is lacking power and struggles to stay on. If you’re wondering what is causing those issues, the throttle positioning system is a good place to start.


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Smoking carIf your throttle position sensor is giving you issues, then you may have the following questions

  • What is a Throttle position sensor?

  • What are signs of a bad throttle position sensor?

  • Is it expensive to fix a throttle position sensor?

  • Is it worth the repair?

In this article, we will go over these questions and more.

Did you know?

A bad throttle position sensor can cause other issues on your car if left unattended. That's right! If the sensor is faulty, it will cause your car to shake heavily. Eventually, if this issue is left unattended it will put major stress on your motor and transmission mounts to the point where they will give out and will need replacement.

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What is a Throttle Position Sensor

A throttle position sensor is similar to the motor cortex in the human brain, it controls one of the most important components of the car that keeps your engine running like a throttle body. Picture a little module in the car that reads how far down you have pressed the gas pedal. It gathers that information and relates it to the mass airflow sensor and the engine's RPM to make sure that the correct amount of air/fuel ratio is going into your engine properly.

What is a throttle body?

What is a throttle body?An engine needs two things to stay running which is air and fuel. Normally a car will pick up air through the intake and passes it through the Mass Airflow Sensor. The air will travel up the intake and it will reach your throttle body. The throttle body is a circular valve that’s located in between your air filter and Intake Manifold. In the old days, there was a wire attached to the gas pedal of your car and it would move accordingly to how you pressed it. Nowadays there is an electric system that's far more efficient than the old ways but it can still have issues.

What happens when my throttle position sensor goes bad

When a TPS goes bad, then the car's throttle body won't function properly. It could either stay shut or it won't close properly which is a severe issue. If it stays shut then your engine is not going receive air and it won't start. When the throttle gets stuck in an open position than your vehicle will receive too much air and cause it to have a high or fluctuating idle.

What are signs of a bad Throttle Position Sensor?

What are signs of a bad Throttle Position Sensor?
  1. Acceleration issues: A bad TPS may cause all sorts of power issues. Your engine may start up but it will have little to no power and it causes it to shut off. On the other hand, it can also cause your car to have spontaneous accelerations even if you didn't step on the gas.

  2. Unstable Engine Idle: Faulty position sensors can cause sporadic idle conditions due to fluctuating airflow. If you see your car misfiring, Idling rough, or stalling out while you drive then you definitely want to have a professional check out that sensor.

  3. Unusual fuel consumption: The TPS works alongside other sensors to ensure that your ride is driving smoothly and efficiently. When these sensors start to go bad then other modules might start working differently to compensate for lack or abundance of airflow. In most cases when your sensor goes bad, you will see the vehicle consuming more fuel than usual

  4. Warning lights: The check engine light is designed to warn you when any sensor goes bad. If the check engine light turned on in your car, then it's important to check it out before the issue gets worse.

Is it expensive to fix a throttle position sensor?

Is it expensive to fix a throttle position sensor?A throttle sensor is no motor swap but it could still get tricky. Depending on what type of vehicle you have this job could get expensive. If your vehicle has the throttle out in the open in a visible and accessible area then the job shouldn't be too hard and it could cost you under $500 fix with parts and labor. Now some cars can get complicated as the throttle is inaccessible at first and will require tons of disassembling like taking off the intake manifold and air filter box. The price could easily double and get close to $1000.00 just for one small sensor.

Is It Worth The Repair?

Some issues are worth fixing while others aren’t. In the case of a bad TPS if your car is relatively new with low miles then it has a long road ahead of it and maybe it is worth your while. Now if your vehicle has existing damages, high mileage, and now mechanical issues then it's best to sell that AS IS to avoid throwing away your hard earned cash into that money pit.

Sell your car to CarBrain! We’re the smart way to sell your car. We’ll buy your vehicle with a bad TPS and more. Our dedicated team of buyers is ready to help you. Simply submit your vehicle through our interactive price engine and in just 90 seconds you could have a fair online offer. If you agree to our offer we’ll deliver the payment and tow your car at no cost to you! All this in just 24 to 48 hours.

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