Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

P0015 OBD-II Trouble Code: Camshaft Position B - Timing Over-Retarded (Bank 1)

Check Engine Light

P0015 code definition

Camshaft Position “B” - Timing Over-Retarded (Bank 1)

What the P0015 code means

P0015 is the OBD-II generic code indicating the engine control module (ECM) has determined that the exhaust camshaft timing for bank 1 is more retarded than what the ECM has commanded it to be. The over-retarded timing condition can be during the advancing or retarding phase.

What causes the P0015 code?

  • The variable camshaft timing (VCT) oil control valve (OCV) is stuck in the open position.

  • The camshaft phaser is stuck in the retarded position due to damage or clogged oil passages.

  • Oil flow problems to the VCT piston and phaser from incorrect oil viscosity.

  • The OCV has an open circuit or the ECM has an open circuit.

What are the symptoms of the P0015 code?

  • The Check Engine Light comes on if the timing is commanded to move, but it stays retarded.

  • The engine will have a hard start and low power condition due to the retarded timing position.

  • The engine fuel mileage will go down.

  • The engine may stall, hesitate, and run rougher than normal.

Note: The camshaft position will cause erratic drive complaints depending on the camshaft failed position.

How does a mechanic diagnose the P0015 code?

  • Does a visual check for problems with the connections or wiring of the OCV

  • Checks the engine oil to see if it is full of clean correct viscosity oil

  • Scans and documents engine codes and views the freeze frame data to see when the code was set

  • Resets the Check Engine Light and road tests again to see if the code returns

  • Commands the OCV on and off with the scan tool to see if the camshaft timing changes

  • Performs the manufacturer’s tests for the P0015 code

Note: The manufacturer's recommended pinpoint test is used to narrow down the problem. Possible engine internal damage may be done if tests are not performed in accordance with a correct procedure.

Common mistakes when diagnosing the P0015 code?

Follow these simple guidelines to prevent mistakes:

  • Verify the failure and codes before attempting any repairs.

  • Do a visual check for any problems with the wiring or connections to the components.

  • Do all pinpoint test steps to help prevent misdiagnosis of good components.

  • Replace parts only as directed by the pinpoint test or after a visual check indicates a problem.

How serious is the P0015 code?

  • Erratic engine running conditions like stalling and rough running may occur.

  • Excessive fuel consumption and hesitation of the engine will follow with carbon fouling of some valve and piston engine components.

  • Driving the vehicle for a prolonged time with the camshafts retarded may cause additional internal engine problems depending on the failed part.

What repairs can fix the P0015 code?

  • Resetting the fault codes and performing a road test
  • Replacing camshaft phasers on both camshaft banks
  • Repairing the wiring or connection to the camshaft OCV
  • Replacing the camshaft OCV for bank 1 exhaust camshaft
  • Replacing timing chain and guides

Additional comments for consideration regarding the P0015 code

The camshaft phaser controls the timing advance and retard function through oil pressure and oil. If the camshaft phaser is leaking oil or the phaser is broken internally then both phasers should be replaced on both banks of the cams.

Need help with a P0015 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.

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

P0121 OBD-II Trouble Code: TPS "A" Circuit Range Performance Problem
P0121 code definition Throttle Pedal Position Sensor/Switch (TPS) A Circuit Range Performance Problem...
P0222 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input
P0222 code definition Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input What the P0222...
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...


Related questions

Q: I need help with diagnostic trouble codes that suddenly appeared making vehicle almost undriveable.

Firstly, you should have the battery disconnected and the PCM disconnected. Check their connectors for any problems and apply dielectric lube to the connectors so the connection is clean from corrosion. If the problem continues then replace the PCM. All...

Q: My Check Engine Light turns on and off, and the Service Traction Light is on

There are several components that can cause these types of symptoms. Issues that cause poor performance and shaking can be fuel, air, spark, electronic, or mechanical problems. The good news is that the Check Engine Light has come on. This...

Q: The codes p0012 and p0015 was shown on the scanner when I had my car checked.

Hi there. The codes P0012 and P0015 are related to the camshaft position sensor. Check the sensor out and make sure that its plugged in. Also, check for power to the sensor. The camshaft sensor keeps the ignition correct at...