by Sam Dillinger (comments: 0)
2007 Toyota Camry 3.5 L V6 With a Misfire
Today we’ll be taking a look at one of my customers who came to me with several problems that all had an underlying cause, as well as one unique thing that is important for everyone to watch out for. So we’ve got a 2007 Toyota Camry with a 3.5 L V6 engine and we’ve got P0031, P0138, P0453, and P0606 for our Pcodes. Let’s take a look under the hood!
First let’s start with a cautionary note, and the unique situation on this customer’s vehicle. This vehicle was recently purchased from a private party, and these issues started showing up almost immediately after the purchase was finalized. The customer didn’t attach any major importance to the “quirks” the vehicle was displaying at first because the check engine light didn’t come on. After the “quirks” became more pronounced the customer visited a local mechanic and found these Pcodes as well as a disappointing surprise. The bulb for the check engine light had been removed from the instrument cluster. Unfortunately there are dishonest people out there that will do things like this. In actuality, the bulb that is responsible for the check engine light illuminating on your dash is not very difficult to remove on most cars. Remove the instrument cluster and you’ll have access to it. Let me be very clear: this is an extremely dishonest practice and I don’t condone it under ANY circumstances. When you first turn the key to the “on” position (just before the crank position, this is when all the vehicle systems are powered up) the instrument cluster will do a self diagnostic check. During this check all the bulbs in the instrument cluster will be lit for a second or two. Do this before you consider buying any car and make sure they all light up. If the check engine light bulb has been disabled or removed, this is a quick way to find out.
Now that we've covered the very unfortunate unique condition about this vehicle, let’s press on. There are two 02 sensor Pcodes, the P0031 and P0138. These mean: P0038 H02S Heater Control Circuit Bank 1 Sensor 2 and P0138 O2 Sensor Circuit Voltage High Bank 1 Sensor 2. There is an evaporative emissions Pcode: P0453 Evaporative Emissions Control System Pressure Sensor Input High. Finally there is a controller malfunction Pcode: P0606 PCM/ECM Processor Fault. When you look at the diagnostics for each of these individually, you'll quickly lose your taste for automotive repair. It gets very involved very quickly. Not so fast though, it may not be as involved as it seems on the surface.
When starting your diagnosis always record your Pcodes for reference, then erase them and go for a ride. Sometimes it may take a while for the Pcodes to return, some of the Pcodes may not return at all, or they may all come back before you get to the end of your street. That all depends on the nature of the failure really. For this customer, he erased the Pcodes and later that day, they all came back. The when reading through the beginning of all the diagnostics for these Pcodes (I don’t mean that literally, it’s quite boring reading unless it’s your car having this problem) you’ll find out that the P0606 Pcode is a PCM, Powertrain Control Module, failure. Anytime the PCM fails, it can set any number of other Pcodes with it. The controller isn’t working correctly any longer and any of the circuits that it monitors could be reported as a failure. In any instance that you have a failure like this, you must always start by replacing the PCM and then a test drive to see if any of the other Pcodes return. In this case, the PCM fixed all the issues at once, and the customer was able to finally drive their new car in peace. If any of the other Pcodes had come back, then you would diagnose them separately. The two 02 sensor Pcodes in this example refer to the same sensor, and would be related (most likely to a failed sensor in this case because of it having more than one reported failure, but proper diagnostics are always important), and the P0453 would be separate.
As always, for my members, if you need any diagnostic help, need any clarification about test results, or just want to swing by and say hi, come see me at www.mycheckenginelight.net
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Meet Sam Dillinger
My name is Sam Dillinger. I've been a professional, dealership technician for 18 and a half years. My first introduction to mechanical repair was when my own vehicle broke down in the fall of 1995. I was 18 and couldn't afford to pay to have it fixed. So I borrowed tools and asked a ton of questions and, eventually, was able to replace the clutch on my truck by myself. During the course of that project, I found that I really enjoyed having a wrench in my hand and figuring out the puzzle of disassembly and reassembly of a motor vehicle.