Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How Long Does a Speed Sensor Last?

speed sesnsors

Today’s cars are equipped with a very wide range of sensors. Yours has a mass airflow sensor, at least one oxygen sensor, and many others. The vehicle speed sensor (VSS) is usually located on the transmission’s output shaft (although it can be located in other areas). It’s responsible for sending a signal to the car’s computer that tells it how fast the vehicle is traveling.

The speed sensor is also tied into the car’s anti-lock braking system and helps provide information that is used in determining when ABS should be activated and when it shouldn’t be.

The speed sensor is in use any time your car is in motion. Thus, it’s exposed to a lot of wear and tear. The sensor’s location at the end of the transmission also means that it’s exposed to high levels of heat, and it can also be contaminated or even damaged by water, dirt and debris from the road, although this is rare. Other problems stem from conductive inner surface wear, dirt contamination in the lubrication grease and other issues.

In terms of lifespan, there is no way to predict how long your car’s speed sensor will last. In theory, it can last the life of the vehicle, but that doesn’t always happen. Premature failure isn’t unheard of.

If your car’s speed sensor begins to fail, you’ll notice a very wide range of possible symptoms. These include:

  • Inconsistent speedometer readings (the needle does not maintain a reading even though you’re driving at a steady speed)

  • Check Engine light is on

  • The transmission sounds like it is revving very high before shifting

  • The speedometer doesn’t work

  • The overdrive light flashes

  • The transmission struggles to shift into the highest gear

  • The ABS light is on in the dash

If you notice these or any other symptoms that seem to point to the vehicle speed sensor, YourMechanic can help. One of our mobile mechanics can visit your home or office, inspect the vehicle speed sensor, wiring and other potential causes, and repair the problem.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P2422 OBD-II Trouble Code: Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP) Vent Valve Stuck Closed
Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC): P2422 P2422 code definition Evaporative Emissions Control System (EVAP)...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...


Related questions

Q: What does trouble code P0325 mean?

Hi there - P0325 is a Knock Sensor Malfunction. Knock sensors provide a significant function in a modern engine. A failure of the engine knock sensor is a somewhat risky issue. Modern engine have fairly high compression ratios, all in...

Q: overheating no cooling fans

The relays are turned on by the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) by grounding the control wire of the relays. The PCM needs input from the engine coolant sensor above the water pump to sense whether the engine is overheating before...

Q: My engine is surging at 2500 rpm's.

Hi there. First check the ECM for any codes that are present. If the codes are logged for the camshaft position sensor, then check harness to the camshaft position sensor and make sure that there is a reference voltage. If...