P0101 OBD-II Trouble Code: Mass Airflow (MAF) Circuit Operating Range or Performance Problem

Our certified mechanics come to you · Get a fair and transparent estimate upfront

Red-stars EXCELLENT RATING ON

Cost of diagnosing the P0101 code

P0101 is a diagnostic trouble code (DTC) for "Mass Airflow (MAF) Circuit Operating Range or Performance Problem". This can happen for multiple reasons and a mechanic needs to diagnose the specific cause for this code to be triggered in your situation. Our certified mobile mechanics can come to your home or office to perform the Check Engine Light diagnostic. Once we are able to diagnose the problem, you will be provided with an upfront quote for the recommended fix and receive $20.00 off as a credit towards the repair. All our repairs are backed by our 12-month / 12,000-mile warranty.

Cars Estimate Credit towards follow-up repair Earliest Availability
Ford$20.00
Toyota$20.00
BMW$20.00
SCHEDULE P0101 DIAGNOSTIC Get a fair and transparent estimate upfront

P0101 code definition

Mass Airflow (MAF) Circuit Operating Range or Performance Problem

  • The P0101 code can often be associated with a P0100, P0102, P0103 and P0104 codes.

What the P0101 code means

P0101 is the general code for a problem with the Mass Airflow Sensor (MAS) operating range and/or an engine performance issue.

What causes the P0101 code?

  • The most common source of the problem is the sensor range of the MAF sensor being outside of the normal operating range. This provides input to the Engine Control Unit (ECU) giving outputs that are beyond the programming for the engine management.

  • The MAF sensor is not operating within the performance range programmed into the ECU related to the data sampling rate. This causes conflicts in the engine management system leading to poor performance and erratic operation.

  • The wiring or MAF sensor may be too close to higher voltage consuming components. This includes alternators, ignition wires, etc. which can cause interference in the output signal to the ECU.

  • A vacuum leak can also cause a fault reading and can lead to other problems that may indicate several codes at the same time.

  • MAF sensors must operate within specific ranges to be able to send correct signals to the ECU. This will make sure it is adjusted correctly for proper engine operation.

What are the symptoms of the P0101 code?

  • P0101 code will be generally preceded by the engine warning light coming on the dashboard display.

  • The engine runs close to normal but it may run slightly erratically, have less power and idle inconsistently along with poor fuel economy.

How does a mechanic diagnose the P0101 code?

  • Retrieves the P0101 code with an OBD- II scanner.

  • Inspects the engine for obvious problems, then resets the OBD- II fault codes and road tests the vehicle to see if the code comes back.

If the P0101 code comes back, the mechanic follows the test procedure prescribed for that code:

  • Inspects the electrical connector to insure it is securely attached.

  • Disconnects it and reinstalls it to insure fresh and clean electrical connection

  • Insures no high voltage sources near the MAF or it's wiring

Common mistakes when diagnosing the P0101 code

  • Buying a MAF sensor without being certain that the sensor output has been confirmed to be out of range.

  • Not cleaning the MAF sensor before buying. Try cleaning it with a specialized spray cleaner made for MAF sensors, like CRC 05110, as these often get considerable carbon build up from the emission system, especially at idle.

  • Not catching vacuum leaks will show the sensor giving a higher than normal flow of air through the MAF sensor due to excessive air coming through the leak.

How serious is the P0101 code?

  • The P0101 code will not prevent the car from driving but it is advisable to check it out as soon as possible.

  • The MAF sensor issue can cause excessive fuel consumption, rough operation and difficulty starting in certain circumstances. Sustained driving can cause internal problems in the engine.

  • If the engine warning light came on immediately at start up, the OBD- II system can be reset and the vehicle will operate normally.

What repairs can fix the P0101 code?

The most common potential repairs to address the P0101 code are as follows:

  • Verify the code with a scanner. Reset the fault codes and perform a road test using a live data scanner.

  • If the P0101 code comes back, then follow the test procedure prescribed for that code.

  • Inspect the electrical connector to insure it is securely attached. Disconnect it and then reinstall to insure fresh and clean electrical connection. Insure no high voltage sources are near the MAF or its wiring.

  • Visually inspect for wiring being frayed or broken on the connector. Repair or replace as necessary.

  • Check for vacuum leaks on the intake, especially on older cars which can have cracks due to age of the materials.

Additional comments for consideration regarding the P0101 code

  • Many vehicles with mileage over 100,000 have momentary sensor problems that usually occur during start up or prolonged stress situations on the drive train.

  • If the engine warning light comes on and the vehicle seems to be operating normally, the OBD-II system can be reset using the scanner and the problem may not reoccur. This is why it is important to verify the fault and reset it before doing any repairs.

Need help with a P0101 code?

YourMechanic offers certified mobile mechanics who will come to your home or office to diagnose and repair your vehicle. Get a quote and book an appointment online or speak to a service advisor at 1-800-701-6230.

trouble codes
P0101
Check Engine Light

No more waiting rooms! Our mechanics will come to you to diagnose and fix the P0101 code.

SCHEDULE P0101 DIAGNOSTIC
Get a $20 credit for the follow-up repair

Recent Check Engine Light is on Inspection reviews

Excellent Rating

(6,114)

Rating Summary
5,655
221
51
35
152
5,655
221
51
35
152

Kevin

24 years of experience
388 reviews
Kevin
24 years of experience
Chevrolet Tracker - Check Engine Light is on - Stone Mountain, Georgia
Kevin was pretty cool! He explained things to me in a way I could understand and was able to offer me some good options to fix my car problems! Very professional and knew his stuff! Excellent experience

JOHNNY

33 years of experience
63 reviews
JOHNNY
33 years of experience
Toyota Camry - Check Engine Light is on - Carmichael, California
Johnny was early, friendly, and thorough! He explained things to me about my car that I had no idea about before! I booked him for a diagnostic appointment and I’m definitely requesting him for a follow-up!

Benji

22 years of experience
184 reviews
Benji
22 years of experience
Jaguar XK - Check Engine Light is on - Phoenix, Arizona
Will absolutely recommend Benjie to all my friends, thorough and knowledgeable. Will have him back fit all future car repairs!

Marco

29 years of experience
124 reviews
Marco
29 years of experience
Kia Soul - Check Engine Light is on - Riverside, California
Marco was great. Cam on time, and explained everything he did. Also gave good recommendation for fixing as the problem has a Kia recall.


Related questions

P0175 p0101

Check the fuel injectors and see if they are leaking and not atomizing properly. The injectors could be working fine but dripping instead of spraying. I recommend performing a injection cleaning on the engine to see if the injectors will...

codes p0101 and p0303 simultaneously

The code P0101 is for a problem with the MAF sensor and code P0303 is for a cylinder number 3 misfire. The first thing to check is to make sure there is no vacuum leaks or leaks between the MAF...

My car goes into limp mode.

Hi there. The code C1130 that was cleared was either for the ECM (computer to the vehicle) or the ABS controller unit having a fault. The code p0101 if for the mass air flow sensor (MAF) is reoccurring for the...

More related articles

P0230 OBD-II Trouble Code: Fuel Pump Primary Circuit Malfunction
P0230 P0230 code definition Fuel Pump Primary Circuit Malfunction What the P0230 code means P0230 is a generic OBD-II code which indicates that the fuel pump primary circuit has a malfunction of the vehicle power to the fuel pump when...
P2425 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Recirculation Cooling Valve Control Circuit Open
P2425 P2425 code definition Exhaust Gas Recirculation Cooling Valve Control Circuit Open What the P2425 code means P2425 is an OBD-II generic code that the engine control module (ECM) detected the engine exhaust gas recirculation cooling bypass valve (EGRCBV) control...
B1971 OBD-II Trouble Code: Passenger Seatback Rearward Switch Circuit Short to Ground
B1971 means there is an error with the seatback rearward switch. This is most likely due to damaged electrical components or a bad switch.

How can we help?

Our service team is available 7 days a week, Monday - Friday from 6 AM to 5 PM PST, Saturday - Sunday 7 AM - 4 PM PST.

1 (855) 347-2779 · hi@yourmechanic.com