P0344 Code: Camshaft Position Sensor – Intermittent
What does the P0344 code mean?
The P0344 trouble code is indicating that the engine control unit was/is getting a faulty signal from the camshaft position sensor. The code is telling is that the problem was intermittent and it may not still be there. A trouble code can be stored in the engine control unit for a long time. The p0344 is an OBD2 Generic trouble code which applies to all car models and makes from year around 2000.
You may find other camshaft related trouble codes with the P0344 code. Some examples are P0341, P0342, P0343. The codes are very similar, the difference is what kind of faulty signal the engine control unit has detected.
Some engines do have several camshaft sensors but do normally just have one. Sometimes you get bank information from your trouble code if you are having a V-engine. If you get that information, the bank 1 is located at the cylinders 1-3-5-7-9 and the bank 2 sensor is located at the cylinder 2-4-6-8-10 and so on.
4-stroke engines crankshaft do rotate two turns per cycle and the camshaft sensor is rotating one turn per cycle. A lot of older vehicles do only have a crankshaft sensor. Because of that, the engine control module will not know which of the turns the engine is at. Because of that, the engine control unit is firing the ignition coils two times per turn, called “Wasted spark”. With a use of a camshaft sensor, the engine control unit does only have to fire the injectors and ignition one time per turn.
Because the p0344 code is telling us that the problem is intermittent. You will most likely only have a check engine like as a symptom. But there could be some other symptoms if the problem is permanent.
- Hard starting condition / Long cranking time
- Check Engine light / Service engine soon light
- Loss of power in the engine
- Rough idle
- Engine dies suddenly
The most common cause is a faulty camshaft position sensor, but you should always check the wirings and the connector before replacing the sensor. The problem could also occur to a low-battery voltage in some cases. A common misdiagnosing is to start checking the camshaft timing. This code is telling is that there is a problem in the electrical circuit and not a problem of the camshaft timing.
- Faulty Camshaft position sensor ( Most common )
- Faulty Wirings to camshaft position sensor
- Corrosion / Bad connection in the camshaft position sensor connector plug
- Low battery voltage
- Faulty Engine control unit (Rare)
If you have noticed that your car had low voltage before at some point. Charge your battery and erase the P0344 trouble code to check if it’s coming back. Sometimes it can be that easy.
- Replace Camshaft position sensor
- Repair Wirings
- Clean the camshaft position sensor connector plug
- Charge your car battery
- Replace engine control unit (Rare)
How to diagnose the P0344 code
This is a guide to how a skilled automotive technician would diagnose this trouble code. It may require some car electrician skills and require some tools. Because the trouble code is intermittent, you fault may not occur when you are diagnosing it. But it’s always good to check it.
Connect a car battery charger
Always connect a Charge your battery to your vehicle before starting doing any troubleshooting. I do recommend to get a charger that is charging over 4 amperes. If you are troubleshooting with the ignition ON a lot, it may drain your battery if it is not giving enough power.
Connect an OBD2 scanner
Connect an OBD2 scanner to your car. Verify the P0344 code. At this moment you have two options, either erase the trouble code and charge your battery and hope that it is not coming back. But I do recommend that you diagnose it properly to see if you can find any problems.
Locate your camshaft sensor
Locate your camshaft sensor. It is located anywhere near one of the camshafts. You can see an example picture of a camshaft sensor at the top of the article. You have to identify if you have an hall sensor or VR sensor for the next tasks. Hall sensor = 3 pins/wires and VR sensor = 2 pins/wires.
Check for damages/corrosion
Check in the camshaft position sensor connector plug to see if you can see any damages or bad connection. If you find any green coloured metal, there have probably been water infiltration and caused bad connection at the pins. To clean it up you can use an Electric Cleaner. Check for any oil leaks around the camshaft sensor and clean it up if it’s a lot of oil around it.
Diagnose of Hall sensor
The hall sensor uses three wires. One 5 volt power supply, one ground and one signal wire.
To diagnose the hall sensor:
Check if you get 5-volt power with a Digital multimeter.
Check if you get 5-volt on the signal wire with the ignition on and the connector unplugged.
Check if you have ground on the ground wire.
If you have all these, your camshaft position sensor may be damaged.
Diagnose of VR sensor
The VR sensor uses two wires. One signal wire and one return wire.
The easiest way to check this sensor is to measure the ohms between the two pins on the sensor with the connector unplugged.
You should get a value around 500-2000 ohms. If you are getting a value of 0 or nothing, there may be an open circuit in the sensor and the sensor should be replaced
Unplug the Engine control connector and find out which two pins are going to the sensor. Do the same procedure with the connector plugged in. You should get the same ohm’s here, maybe a bit higher due to the length of the wires. If you are getting 0 or nothing here, there might be a problem with your wirings.
Recommended Tools to Fix P0344
- Read the DTC code memory: FOXWELL NT301 Scan Tool. For advanced troubleshooting, you may need a more advanced code reader.
- Car Battery charger: NOCO Genius G3500 6V/12V Smart Battery Charger
- To measure the wirings: Digital multimeter
- Contact cleaner to clean connector plugs: Electric Cleaner
- Advanced diagnosing: oscilloscope
If you have any other questions about the P0344 code, comment down below and I will answer you as fast as possible. If you have any other car questions you are welcome to ask us at our homepage.