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P0071 is a diagnostic trouble code (DTC) for "Ambient Air Temperature Sensor Range/Performance". This can happen for multiple reasons and a mechanic needs to diagnose the specific cause for this code to be triggered in your situation. Our certified mobile mechanics can come to your home or office to perform the Check Engine Light diagnostic for $114.99 . Once we are able to diagnose the problem, you will be provided with an upfront quote for the recommended fix and receive $20.0 off as a credit towards the repair. All our repairs are backed by our 12-month / 12,000-mile warranty.
Ambient Air Temperature Sensor Range/Performance Issue
Depending on the type of vehicle these are some related OBD-II Diagnostic Trouble Codes:
The ambient air temperature sensor provides the Power Control Module (PCM) with information that is necessary to monitor the ambient air temperature and intake air temperature. When the ambient air temperature to intake air temperature ratio is abnormal, this triggers the P0071 trouble code, causing the Check Engine Light to come on.
The following are known causes for the P0071 trouble code:
A Check Engine Light is the most common symptom of the P0071 trouble code. It is also possible that the climate control system (heat and/or air condition controls) will stop working as it should, indicating that there is a fault in the ambient air temperature sensor.
Recording the freeze frame data and diagnostic trouble codes present is the first step in diagnosing the P0071 trouble code. This can be done by using an OBD-II scanner.
After receiving the P0071 trouble code from the OBD-II scanner, the wiring and connectors going to the ambient air temperature sensor should be inspected for shorts, breaks, and corrosion in the circuitry and/or connector. It is also a good idea to make sure that there isn’t anything covering the sensor, which could cause the P0071 code to be triggered.
After inspecting these components and repairing and/or replacing as needed, the trouble code should be cleared and the vehicle test driven. This part of the diagnostic process will ensure that the ambient air temperature sensor issue has been resolved and that there are no other problems attributing to the P0071 trouble code.
The ambient air temperature sensor will need to be replaced if the P0071 diagnostic trouble code quickly returns during the test drive. If the P0071 diagnostic trouble code returns, but the return is not immediate, an intermittent problem has been indicated and further diagnosis of the voltage going to the PCM would be required.
In very rare instances, when all of the above diagnostic measures do not resolve the ambient air temperature sensor issue, this could indicate that there is a problem with the Power Control Module (PCM). This is unusual, but is still a possibility.
It is important to check the ambient air temperature sensor wiring and connector before replacing the sensor itself. Too often, the ambient air temperature sensor is replaced when a defect in the wiring and/or connector could have resolved the P0071 trouble code.
The ambient air temperature sensor could affect the climate control system (heat and/or air condition controls), which could cause uncomfortable driving conditions. The P0071 trouble code would not be classified as a serious one because it does not interfere with the vehicle's drivability function or prevent the car from running properly.
Although the most common solution to resolving the P0071 diagnostic trouble code will be to replace the ambient air temperature sensor, the wiring, connector, and harness need to first be excluded as the problem.
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