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If you’re having trouble figuring out what code P0356 means, you’ve come to the right place.

What Does the P0356 Code Mean?

Diagnostic trouble code (DTC) P0356 stands for “Ignition Coil F Primary/Secondary Circuit Malfunction.” If the PCM perceives a possible problem in one of the ignition coils or if it loses control of the circuit, it logs error code P0356.

To understand how this code is set, you can read our technical discussion about the primary and secondary windings of ignition coils here.

Since the ECM/PCM is triggering the primary of each ignition coil or each pair of coils, it has the ability to watch the voltage spike created by the primary winding each time it triggers the secondary winding, and if the ECM/PCM doesn’t see the primary voltage spike, it knows there is a problem of some kind with the primary and possibly the secondary elements of the coil or coil pack.

car engine with four ignition coils aligned
If the PCM perceives a possible problem in one of the ignition coils or if it loses control of the circuit, it logs error code P0356.

If the secondary part of the ignition coil is shorted out, the primary spike will be weak as a result. That’s when it typically sets the P0356 code if the fault is on cylinder #6.

Note: The definition of code P0356 may be different depending on the vehicle manufacturer. Consult the appropriate repair manual or repair database for the exact code definition.

What are the Possible Causes of the P0356 Code?

P0356 is a generic code, so it can have several triggers. Here are the most common:

  • Defective ignition coil
  • Wiring issue
  • Poor connection
  • Faulty PCM

What are the Common Symptoms of the P0356 Code?

You may notice the following symptoms if your vehicle has logged the code P0356:

How to Diagnose the P0356 Code

Prevent further complications by addressing an engine code P0356 right away. However, obtaining an accurate diagnosis can prove difficult as the code shares common triggers and symptoms with other DTCs. All vehicles are built differently, so the diagnostic steps will also vary depending on their manufacturer.

mechanic checking manual using tablet
For the appropriate steps, always consult your vehicle’s repair manual.

For instance, the procedure for diagnosing a P0356 on a Toyota may be different from testing for the same code on a Ford. For the appropriate steps, always consult your vehicle’s repair manual. If you decide that DIY auto repair is not for you, you can always seek the help of a mechanic.

How to Fix the P0356 Code

Code P0356 may be logged in vehicles of varying makes and models, so you should always refer to repair information specific to your vehicle for the appropriate repair steps. If you aren’t confident in your automotive know-how, it may be best to leave the job to a mechanic.

However, if you’re set on resolving this code on your own, make sure your automotive knowledge is up to date. Refer to a repair manual or an online repair database to learn how to resolve code P0356.

Any information provided on this Website is for informational purposes only and is not intended to replace consultation with a professional mechanic.

File Under : OBD-II Trouble Codes Tagged With :
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