1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. How Long Does a Speedometer Sensor Last?

How Long Does a Speedometer Sensor Last?

speedometer sensor

While a mechanical speedometer will use a speedometer cable attached to the driveshaft and transmission, that’s not the case with an electronic speedometer, such as is used in most modern vehicles. These use a speedometer sensor. It’s mounted to the transmission, but there is no cable that connects it to the back of the speedometer housing. Instead, it sends a series of pulses to the car’s computer, which interprets those signals, and then displays them as the speed at which you’re traveling.

Each vehicle requires a specific speedometer sensor calibrated for it’s unique specifications. In addition, the speedometer sensor is in use at all times when your car is on the road. If you’re moving, the sensor is sending signals to the computer. The good news is that mechanical failure isn’t a problem (it’s an electronic component). The bad news is that electronic components can still fail early.

Under ideal circumstances, your speedometer sensor should last for decades, if not the life of the car. However, premature failure does happen. Damage to the wiring harness, exposure to caustic fluids, and many other things can cause problems with the sensor. Debris can also build up around the base of the sensor, which actually mounts inside the transmission housing.

If your speedometer sensor fails, your speedometer itself will be unreliable. It might not work at all in a worst-case scenario. Knowing a few common symptoms to watch for can help make this situation easier to deal with. They include:

  • Speedometer doesn’t work
  • Speedometer is inaccurate (reading too high or too low)
  • Speedometer needle bounces, or digital readout changes randomly
  • Check Engine light is on
  • Cruise control doesn’t work

If you’ve noticed any of these symptoms, or believe that there’s a problem with the speedometer or speedometer speed sensor, YourMechanic can help. One of our mobile mechanics can visit your home or office and diagnose the problem, and then replace your speedometer sensor.

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

P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
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...

Related questions

Q: Car won't start or stay in park.

Hi there. The issue could be the shifter cable not adjusted properly or the transmission position sensor could have failed. If the transmission is not shifting into park, then check the shifter cable to see if its loose on the...

Q: Speedometer 5 MPH too slow

Speedometer issues are not very common and sometimes can be caused by things we do. For example replacing the tires. Tires need to be replaced with tires of the exact same size because that is the size that is programmed...

Q: My ESC light comes on and I have to wait 45 minutes before I can start the car

Electronic Stabilization Control detects critical situations at an early stage, and takes action to stop skidding and help bring your car safely back under control. Check the wheel sensors for proper operation. Make sure that the sensors are plugged in...