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Summary
  • A P0322 trouble code may be set when the powertrain control module (PCM) is unable to receive signals from the crankshaft or camshaft position sensor.
  • An engine that cranks but refuses to start, misfiring, stalling, and poor fuel economy are some telltale signs that point to a logged P0322 code.
  • Unlike other trouble codes, this code doesn’t appear on most vehicle platforms.

Got a code P0322 on your OBD scan tool? This article will discuss what this trouble code means, including technical background information that can help you understand it better. Read on if you want to know more about the issue and what you can do about it.

What Does the P0322 Code Mean?

The P0322 Code is defined as “Ignition/Distributor Engine Speed Input Circuit No Signal.” The code may be set when the PCM does not detect a signal from the engine speed sensor (either the camshaft position sensor or crankshaft position sensor). However, the code isn’t really meant to signify a failure in either of the sensors. This code is only meant to signify that there’s something wrong with one of these circuits.

Note that P0322 is a rare code that doesn’t appear on most vehicle platforms. You may be wondering why the definition corresponds to engine speed when the faulty part is actually one of the sensor circuits. It’s because the PCM uses the sensors to determine engine RPM, hence the code definition “engine speed input circuit no signal.”

camshaft position sensor image
The code P0322 may be set when the PCM does not detect a signal from either the camshaft position sensor or crankshaft position sensor.

Note: The definition of the P0322 code may be different depending on the vehicle manufacturer. The P0322 code applies but isn’t limited to Audi, Mazda, Mercedes, and Volkswagen vehicles. Consult the appropriate repair manual or repair database for the exact code definition.

What are the Possible Causes of the P0322 Code?

What are the Common Symptoms of the P0322 Code?

The lack of signal from the CKP and CMP affects the PCM’s function to make the engine run efficiently, so the symptoms of the P0322 code are engine-related. These symptoms include the following:

How to Diagnose the P0322 Code

Check engine lights, misfires, and stalling are common issues for any vehicle. However, determining which component is faulty can be difficult since it could be many different parts. If you want an accurate diagnosis, you should leave the task to a professional.

Check out the online resources below to learn more about the troubleshooting process.

How to Fix the P0322 Code

The first step towards fixing any OBD-II code is accurately identifying the cause of the issue. But once you’ve identified the cause, there’s no magic bullet because solutions can vary. The first step towards a possible fix is consulting a repair manual or online repair database.

All vehicles are different. You’ll need to make sure you’ve gathered all the repair information you need before you troubleshoot and repair the underlying issues behind diagnostic trouble codes.

Crank and Cam Sensors and How They Can Produce Trouble Codes like P0322

Crank sensor input is as old as on-board engine computers. Some Fords had crankshaft sensors beginning in 1979 but the crank sensor disappeared in favor of a “profile ignition pickup” Hall Effect stator in the distributor beginning in 1984.

But in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, crank sensors had returned to some Ford platforms along with coil pack ignition.

Crank and Cam Sensor Configurations

The crank sensor is typically one of the more important inputs and is required for the engine to run. But in some cases (like on a few Asian make SUVs), a crank sensor will only be used for misfire detection. Units with this configuration will typically have a distributor with integral speed and position sensors rather than coil pack or COP ignition.

crankshaft position sensor configuration
The crank sensor is typically one of the more important inputs and is required for the engine to run.

On the Jeep 4.0L beginning in 1987, a crank sensor was used for ignition triggering and a 50% duty cycle cam sensor was used in the distributor until coil rail ignition replaced the distributor. At that point, the cam sensor was in a small “synchronizer” that looked like a distributor without a bowl. And if that cam sensor becomes maladjusted, it can cause very strange misfires and ignition related codes that make no sense on companion cylinders.

The camshaft sensor will read directly from the camshaft if there is no cam sensor in the distributor. The ECM/PCM is always watching for crank and cam sensor correlation and will throw various different codes depending on the manufacturer.

Cam sensor input has become vastly more important on modern engines with variable cam timing and is most often a critical piece of information when it comes to troubleshooting.

When the Crank and Cam Sensors Malfunction

Some vehicles will continue to run even if the crank sensor signal is lost while driving (like on a 2010 Chevy Cobalt), but the engine will always fail to start on the next attempt if there is no crank sensor signal.

The cam sensor may or may not cause a no-start condition depending on the platform, but both signals are necessary for proper control of fuel injection, timing, and other emission-related engine functions.

A Nissan V6 may have a long crank, hard if one of the 2 cam sensor signals is lost. Four cylinder Nissan Altimas from the 2000s decade may start one time and then not start the next time if the cam sensor signal isn’t present.

If the cam sensor signal is lost on some vehicles, they will either start hard or they may bank-fire the injectors rather than firing them sequentially, and that will cause a dreadful loss of fuel economy.

Cam and Crank Patterns

Here are some cam/crank patterns from 2006. Notice some are analog (wave) and some are square wave Hall Effect type signals. Some have one of each. The ECM/PCM is always watching these signals on just about every platform and will set various different codes, including P0322, if the signals indicate the shafts are out of time.

2006 ford escape cam and crank pattern
2006 Escape 3.0L. Red is crank, green is cam. Tan is coil ramping. | Image Source: Richard McCuistian
2006 hyundai sonata cam and crank patterns
2006 Sonata 3.0L. Blue is crank, red and green are camshafts. | Image Source: Richard McCuistian
2006 dodge cam and crank patterns
2006 Dodge 5.7L. Blue is crank, red is cam. | Image Source: Richard McCuistian

Getting Replacement Parts to Resolve DTC P0322

As mentioned previously, one of the issues that can trigger code P0322 is a bad crankshaft position sensor. To prevent it from causing engine-related problems and making driving a hassle, don’t put off replacing it. Fortunately, you can find a replacement with just a few clicks at CarParts.com.

Our selection of crankshaft position sensors includes accurate and detailed fitment information, so you’re sure to find exactly what you need to restore your ride’s performance. Use our vehicle selector to check out compatible parts, then funnel the catalog results according to your preferences using the search filters.

We only source our sensors from the most reliable names in the industry, each vetted by professionals to give you choices that are built to last. These sensors are also available at affordable prices to give you the best value for your money.

Check out our catalog and take advantage of the best deals today!

About The Author
Written By Automotive and Tech Writers

The CarParts.com Research Team is composed of experienced automotive and tech writers working with (ASE)-certified automobile technicians and automotive journalists to bring up-to-date, helpful information to car owners in the US. Guided by CarParts.com's thorough editorial process, our team strives to produce guides and resources DIYers and casual car owners can trust.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic. The accuracy and timeliness of the information may change from the time of publication.

File Under : OBD-II Trouble Codes
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