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Old 06-12-2009, 04:00 AM   #1
jlb0305
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2003 VUE 3.0L
Default Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Hi,

I've been having some problems with my 2003 Staurn Vue AWD 3.0 V6.

Initially it was having trouble starting and would throw codes P0341 OR P0343 i forget which and a P166X code dealing with the security system. Those went away after a day on their own. But I still had the starting problem. The other day it while my wife was driving to work the engine shut off and it started throwing codes P0341, P0343 and P0335. I replaced the Crankshaft Pos sensor and ordered a cam pos sensor (backordered up to 4-6 weeks). I took it for a test drive and it seemed fine at first but then the engine died again and began throwing P0341, P0335, and P0421.

When it dies the engine shuts off but i can still steer and brake normally, just lack of acceleration and decrease inspeed until i stop completely. its fine if i turn of the car and turn it back on. Until it dies again that is, which can be as short as a few seconds or as long as hours. The engine will only die after restarting it when i press the gas, not just idling.

Having just replaced the Crank sensor (p0335) is there something else I should be looking at? Do these seem related?

Should i just call it quits for at home analysis and just take it to a mechanic?

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Old 06-12-2009, 04:20 AM   #2
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

DTC P0335 CKP Sensor A Circuit Performance

DTC P0341 Camshaft Position (CMP) Sensor Performance

DTC P0343 Camshaft Position Sensor Circuit High Input

DTC P0421 Warm Up Catalyst Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 1)

When you say the engine dies, are you describing "reduced power mode"? The engine doesn't die but enters into low power mode and no matter how far the gas pedal is pressed, there's barely any power - what's also called "limp home mode".

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Old 06-12-2009, 07:31 AM   #3
jlb0305
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

No it stops moving entirely and has the battery and oil lights illuminate along with the service engine soon light.


also the initial codes were P1626 and P0343 a few weeks ago not P0341 and P166X.

Since I replaced the Crankshaft Pos Sensor yesterday and it still threw P0341, P0335, and P0421 after that should I continue with trying to replace the cam sensor (if I can get one sooner than a few weeks) or just take it to a professional?

Could P0335 be being thrown still because of the cam sensor and not the crank?

With the new crank sensor it didn't have trouble starting at all. Also I drove it for like 10 miles before it died after changing the sensor.

Also could P0421 be being thrown because I just reset the codes after changing the sensor?

Last edited by jlb0305; 06-12-2009 at 07:42 AM.. Reason: changing troubleshooting

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Old 06-12-2009, 08:14 AM   #4
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Could it be the ECM failing?

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Old 06-12-2009, 09:19 AM   #5
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2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Ok, don't go into panic mode yet. I think its safe to say that the ECM never fails (at least on our L-series so far) but the BCM is a whole 'nother story. I know cps failures from the L200(?) without the V6 engine and the S-series. They all follow the same pattern; most fail after the engine is warmed up, randomly drop dead until the engine cools off to allow the faulty cps to work again until engine heat kills it again. The few dead ones are outright failures; engine cranks over but never fires up. Our V6 engines uses the cam position sensor (CMP) along with the crank position sensor (CPS/CKP). This makes it somewhat unusual when one fails and the other serves as back-up to allow engine running.

The P0421 is the least of your worries right now because the engine won't run right as its downstream (converter) from the engine error codes. The easiest to do was to reset the codes and see which ones, if any, come back so P0421 only came back because of poor engine running.

What's unusual is that we may be the only vehicles to have the cps error code pop up. The S-series never sees the cps error code and have to refer to this site for the cause and effect posts to figure out cps faults. Our cars uses an extra sensor, the cam sensor, that complicates ECM operation. I'm still not clear of the division of duties between the cmp and cps. You may be the first to find out that the cam sensor is needed unless there's something else causing these errors. Something like loose connections, more corrosion in connections than normal, off the wall stuff.

Uhhh, have you passed 100,000 miles and not replaced the timing belt?

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Old 06-12-2009, 10:31 AM   #6
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Still in mid 90's right now. Planned on changing belt later this year.

Do you think that the bad CMP Sensor would be throwing the Crank code still?

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Old 06-12-2009, 11:12 AM   #7
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

I don't think one affects the other as it wouldn't make sense to begin with. The cps is the electronic equivalent of a heartbeat so if it fails the fuel pump stops, no ignition/spark or injector pulses occurs. The cam sensor provides additional timing signals for ___________ (I don't have my FSM's in front of me). I can only guess that the cam sensor failing is causing miscommunication/errors. When you replaced the cps did you make sure it was seated all the way into its hole before tightening the mounting bolt? Others have replaced theirs but haphazardly didn't seat it, resulting in more intermittent engine die-offs.

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Old 06-12-2009, 11:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

fdryer- Thanks for all your help so far.


Is it normal for there to be oil on the old crank pos sensor? The old one had a coating of motor oil on it when I pulled it out.

I will check the sensor and make sure its seated all the way and I will order the cam sensor too. I cancelled the old 4-6 week order and found one that is will ship today, would get it mon or tues.

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Old 06-12-2009, 02:02 PM   #9
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Yes, there will be oil on the cps as its exposed inside the lower crankcase; the crankshaft 'teeth' swing by the cps in order for the cps to generate precise timing signals for the ECM to turn on and run the EFI system. The O-ring on the cps is to keep oil from seeping out and soiling the engine bottom and dripping all over the place. Oil won't affect performance, gaps will from incorrect replacement causes poor pick-up of the notches on the crankshaft. The cps is basically a proximity switch that detects the presence of metal so placing gaps on the perimeter of a pie-shaped disc forms the 'teeth', each gap corresponding to top dead center for each cylinder. The mechanical placement of the cps in close proximity of this toothed wheel on the crankshaft forms the basic electronic timing signals generated to tell the ECM where each piston is. Since oil is always being flung around the the bottom of the crankcase, the hole with the protruding cps becomes bathed in oil.

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Old 06-12-2009, 05:07 PM   #10
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

'I think its safe to say that the ECM never fails'

Ours did, on my wife's '03. Fortunately, it's still covered under the 8/80 extended emissions warranty. After running normally the day before, it wouldn't start for her the following morning. I got it to start, but it would only run at high RPM. There were also some backfires through the intake tract. We had it trucked in, and it was the ECM - a $900 part IIRC. Recently, the exhaust header on the rear bank cracked at the flange, and this was also covered because that one-piece assembly has the small cat converters in it. I don't even know what the part alone cost, but $1200 wouldn't surprise me. As far as my '03, the only major thing has been the BCM, which of course does not affect the engine.
The OP's troubles don't sound like ECM failure to me, although obviously they can have different symptoms when they go.

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Old 06-19-2009, 08:45 PM   #11
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Sorry took so long to get back to this, I was on travel.

Re-seated the new crank sensor and it cleared the code. The new cam sensor finally came in and replaced that. Went for a test drive and for the 20 mins it was fine. No error codes nothing. Then after my second highway trip i was getting close to my house and I checked the codes at a light. P0421 and P0431. Any thoughts? SES light hasn't come on. I was running the A/C during my tests.

Maybe this is from reseting the codes and having the previous problem?

Or something else?

I plan on replacing the spark plugs soon, assuming I can figure out where they go. From what I heard that may be part of it.

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Old 06-19-2009, 09:34 PM   #12
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlb0305 View Post
Sorry took so long to get back to this, I was on travel.

Re-seated the new crank sensor and it cleared the code. The new cam sensor finally came in and replaced that. Went for a test drive and for the 20 mins it was fine. No error codes nothing. Then after my second highway trip i was getting close to my house and I checked the codes at a light. P0421 and P0431. Any thoughts? SES light hasn't come on. I was running the A/C during my tests.

Maybe this is from reseting the codes and having the previous problem?

Or something else?

I plan on replacing the spark plugs soon, assuming I can figure out where they go. From what I heard that may be part of it.
I've attached extract from service manual ... pertaining to P0421 and P0431.

The description points toward cat ... among other suspects ... read if interested and get in touch if you'd like more information.

Good luck!
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 3.0 DTC's P0421-P0431.pdf (45.9 KB, 91 views)

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Old 06-20-2009, 12:32 AM   #13
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

DTC P0421 Warm Up Catalyst Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 1)

DTC P0431 Warm Up Catalyst Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 2)

Both pre-converters are either shot ($$$$) OR you were running too long with misfiring issues, fouling both. Hopefully, a few days running will burn off excess fuel that never burned during the cmp/cps episode. If the engine never runs normally and dies while running, went into reduced power mode or misfires with a flashing SES indicator, the pre-catalytic converter(s) can become damaged from excess fuel not burned; the cooler pre-catcons from misfiring allows fuel to stay in the pre-cats until repairs allows the engine to run right where the normal engine exhaust will heat up the pre-catcons and now lead to cooking them from the fuel still there. The engine needs to run up to operating temperatures and if repairs went well these codes will clear on their own. Hopefully this will clear on its own with time otherwise it will be expensive for replacements.

DTC P0341 Camshaft Position (CMP) Sensor Performance

This is used with the cps to determine cylinder #1 top dead center for timing purposes to synchronize the ignition, fuel, and knock control. This error clearly indicates a faulty camshaft position sensor (CMP). What this does not do is tell you if the timing belt is worn, allowing mistiming and/or skipped timing. It seems unusual that both cps and cmp are faulty and may point to timing issues - the timing belt.

You haven't posted car mileage and whether or not 100,000 miles have accrued or surpassed to warrant timing belt replacement. This can be a very serious issue if not attended to.

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Old 06-25-2009, 09:42 AM   #14
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

It has 97000. Plan on replacing the timing belt, water pump, and fuel filter soon.

Initial problem was P0341, which occurred while on vacation. Car was having trouble starting. Got home ordered sensor (a few weeks back order). Continued driving it (still problems starting). Three weeks later the car died on the turnpike. Pulled P0335 and P0421 in addition to P0341.
Replaced Crank sensor, while I was still waiting for Cam sensor. Initial test, at start up engine misfired then adjusted itself but still had P0335 and P0341 with some misfire codes. (still problem starting)
Reseated Cranks sensor, which cleared the P0335 code and misfire codes. (still problem starting)
Replaced Cam sensor, which cleared all codes but P0421 and new P0431. Also replaced air filter. (starts fine now)

Noticed that the engine is not getting past 1/4 warm mark on the gauge (normally sits at about 1/2)... possible defective thermostat. I read this could be causing the P0421/P0431... is this true?

Also where/ how do I change the spark plugs on the 3.0L V6 AWD Vue? They are not obvious on top of the engine like most cars.

Last edited by jlb0305; 06-25-2009 at 09:47 AM..

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Old 06-25-2009, 08:59 PM   #15
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

There must be a correlation between the temperature reading too low (excellent observation making online help easier) and the two remaining codes but unfortunately the thermostat is buried in the "V" portion of the engine requiring removal of the intake manifold to access it. This won't be an easy replacement as its just as difficult as the timing belt replacement.

The spark plugs are hidden by the coil packs, eliminating plug wires, so they're under them requiring removal of the intake runners on both sides of the engine to access the coil packs before exposing the plugs for replacement. All posted here by others with some adding pictures. You can look up ignition coil packs from rockauto.com, then locate them by their epoxy excapsulated rectangular appearance under the intake runners. Directly underneath the coil packs resides the plugs.

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Old 08-10-2009, 01:52 PM   #16
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Finally got the chance to swap the thermostat and spark plugs and do a coolant flush...

There was a lot of oil on the plugs. For the 1-3-5 bank 1 and 3 had oil on the boot and top of plug, and the 5 chamber was 1/2 full of oil. As for 2-4-6, 2 was clean, 4 had a little oil and 6 had some. Looks like probable valve gaskets. unfortunately an order item from any store so will be a couple days. Am I right in assuming that P0431 and P0421 are being caused by the excessive amount of oil leaking to the plugs? or should I now focus elsewhere for the root of that problem?

I still need to do timing belt and serp belt. I also may need to end up replacing the coolant temperature sensor as the new thermostat does not appear to have changed my low temperature reading. (Although this is only after a short trip so I am not sure)

...
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Old 10-13-2009, 02:17 PM   #17
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Default Re: Car trouble P0341, P0335, P0421

Update:

I have given up home trouble shooting this issue. After replacing the Thermostat and Temperature sending Unit I again have a low coolant temperature reading and still have the P0431 and P0421. I have taken it to the mechanic to let them fix and replace timing belt, serp belt and water pump. I will update when I get it back.

...
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