How Long Does a Throttle/Accelerator Pedal Position Sensor Last? | YourMechanic Advice

How Long Does a Throttle/Accelerator Pedal Position Sensor Last?

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The throttle/accelerator pedal position sensor detects the position of the accelerator pedal. This information is then transmitted to the vehicle’s computer - the engine control module (ECM). From there, the data is then sent from the computer to the throttle blade - a valve is opened to allow more air in the intake. This tells the engine that you are accelerating. The pedal position sensor is only in vehicles with an Electronic Throttle Control (ETC).

The accelerator pedal position sensor works by using a Hall Effect sensor that determines the location of the pedal by a magnetic field. It produces a change in the charge based on a change in the position of the pedal. The information is relayed to the ECM to let it know how hard you are pushing on the gas pedal.

Over time, the accelerator pedal position sensor can fail due a malfunction within the electronic system of the sensor, or a wiring issue in the sensor or other parts the sensor is connected to, such as the pedal itself. Since you use the sensor every day, these problems can eventually build up, or they can happen all at once. If the sensor fails, the ECM will not have the correct information about how much you are pressing on the pedal. This can lead to stalling, or your vehicle may have a hard time accelerating.

Once the sensor completely fails, your vehicle will go into a limp mode. Limp mode means the engine will barely be able to move and only run at very low RPMs. This is so you can make it home safely, without destroying your vehicle.

Given that the accelerator pedal position sensor can go bad and fail over time. Here are a few symptoms you should be aware of so you can be prepared:

  • The Check Engine Light comes on
  • The vehicle will not go very fast and will run at low RPMs
  • Your vehicle continuously stalls
  • You have problems accelerating
  • The vehicle goes into limp mode

Don’t delay in replacing this part because your vehicle may become inoperable. Have a certified mechanic replace the failing throttle/accelerator pedal position sensor to eliminate any further problems with your vehicle.


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Chris

21 years of experience
1861 reviews
Chris
21 years of experience
Mini Cooper Clubman - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Silverado, California
He arrived early, went straight to work, and it should have been quoted higher as it’s a Mini which takes longer than the average break job. He didn’t try to get more than the quoted amount. He even set out to replace a running light for me when he was finished. I thought there would hard sales telling me I needed more work but there wasn’t. Because he didn’t try to sell me more work, I will use him again. When I hired a mechanic I don’t want a salesman. 
Land Rover Range Rover Sport - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Irvine, California
Chris again has provided great Service. Everything was great. I was very happy with the work and will definitely have him return for any other work.

Bryant

11 years of experience
408 reviews
Bryant
11 years of experience
Ford Fusion - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Indianapolis, Indiana
Bryant has done great work on my car before, the latest work is no exception. He's very flexible, and goes the extra mile to get you back on the road.
Scion iA - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Carmel, Indiana
This is my first time using this service. I am very happy with it. Bryant was very knowledgeable and did quality work. I will use this service more regularly.

Edmar

21 years of experience
184 reviews
Edmar
21 years of experience
Chrysler 200 - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Euless, Texas
Edmar always does a very good job. He's done a few different things on my car the last two years. Each job was performed very fast and top quality. Thank you once again.

Mazyar

7 years of experience
255 reviews
Mazyar
7 years of experience
Jaguar XF - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Lawrenceville, Georgia
He was early, courtesy and actually helped me save some money since i didn't need all the work that i thought i needed done. Honest guy. Very knowledgeable. Great attitude.

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