Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How to Buy a Good Quality Speedometer Sensor

Good Quality speedometer sensor

Modern vehicles are great: they offer so many advanced features to help keep you safe on the road. The speedometer sensor is one of those great inventions – created to help you keep to a safe speed and not speed up more than you expected to while you’re daydreaming (you know it happens!) and to keep you out of the eye of interested policemen everywhere.

Your speedometer sensor is located at the back of the output shaft of the transmission - it tracks the rotation of the wheels and the crankshaft in order to monitor your vehicle’s speed. It supports the cruise control mechanism by sending a pulse rate to it that let the cruise control know whether to speed you up or slow you down. It’s important to also support an ABS (anti-lock braking system) because it keeps wheels rotating at the same speed. Having a damaged speed sensor can make for dangerous driving, because you could be going much faster than you realize and get up to dangerous speeds quickly.

A few things to keep in mind about speed sensors:

  • Location type: There are two main types of speedometer sensors: engine speed sensor and wheel speed sensors. Both do essentially the same job, as they calculate your overall speed and deliver that information to other areas of the vehicle as well as to the driver via the speedometer, but the type of sensor you need to replace will vary based on the problem you’re finding with you vehicle.

  • Optical vs. magnet: There are two key types of sensors: optical speed sensor versus a permanent magnet.

    • Optical: Conventional speed sensors use an optical VSS made up of a photo cell, two-blade mirror reflector, and an LED. The reflector generates an electrical signal which is used to monitor speed. While the optical speed sensor is widely used, due to the number of moving parts it is much more likely to fail than a permanent magnet.
    • Magnet: Permanent magnet sensors can provide much more accurate information about direction, speed, and position and the fact that it doesn’t have many moving parts helps it last longer, too.
  • Aftermarket vs OEM: Aftermarket sensors are likely to be of about the same standards as OEM parts for these sensors, just be sure you’re getting the best quality sensors that you can afford for a longer life.

Note: The size of your tires can affect your sensor’s accuracy, so recalibrate if your tire size has changed.

YourMechanic supplies top-quality speedometer sensors to our certified mobile technicians. We can also install a speedometer sensor that you've purchased. Click here to get a quote and more information on speedometer sensor replacement.

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

Insurance Requirements for Car Registration in Kentucky
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet requires that all drivers in Kentucky carry liability automotive insurance, or “financial responsibility” in order to operate a vehicle legally and maintain vehicle...
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: Will a bad crankshaft position sensor cause my car to turn off while at a stop light?

Hi there. The issue could be one of the following. Check The fuel pressure could be low or dropping when the engine is stalling out - possible fuel pump failure The crankshaft position sensor could be shorting out or...

Q: My cars speedometer just now started wiggling and going back and forth and sometimes to 0 mph.

I would recommend changing the speedometer. I recommend this because the speedometer on older vehicles from the 90s have a manual gear that turns the it. It seems as if the gear has broken and only contacts the needle some...

Q: Where is camshaft sensor located and how difficult to change?

Depending on the engine configuration most camshaft sensors will be installed at one end of the camshaft cover. Some sensors are mounted inline with the camshaft and other sensors are mounted on the side of the camshaft housing. Either way...