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P0196 OBD-II Trouble Code: Engine Oil Temperature (EOT) Sensor low

Diagnostic Check Engine Light

P0196 code definition

Engine Oil Temperature (Engine Oil Temperature) Sensor Range/Performance

What the P0196 code means

This code means the there is a problem with the circuits of the EOT system

What causes the P0196 code?

The P0196 code is set when the PCM/ECM sees values in the electrical circuits that is outside of the predefined values.

Many times, it is how an owner uses a vehicle that can contribute to high oil temperatures. Possible reasons for the oil to have high temperatures include: driving under race conditions, higher than normal load conditions from climbing steep hills, or hauling heavy loads.

What are the symptoms of the P0196 code?

The only symptom is the Check Engine Light. However, there may be other problems with the vehicle that will exhibit symptoms that a driver may notice. This includes overheating or a lack of heat from the vents due to a stuck open thermostat.

How does a mechanic diagnose the P0196 code?

  • A technician should begin by checking the overall condition of the motor.

  • They will look for any signs of overheating from the cooling system and whether the engine oil show signs of excessive heat.

  • If the engine oil appears clean and in good condition and the cooling system is working properly, then they will need to take a closer look at the EOT system itself.

Common mistakes when diagnosing the P0196 code

This code is rare to be set by itself. If it is the lone code, it is usually due to the failure of the EOT system itself. Failure to recognize other problems with the vehicle that have created conditions to set this code can be quite easy.

Outside of other systems causing this code to be set, a technician may be tempted to simply change the EOT sensor without checking wiring harnesses and signals from the PCM. The system should be thoroughly inspected before making any repairs.

How serious is the P0196 code?

A malfunction of the EOT system will not damage a motor or make a tow truck necessary. However, this system is in place to alert the driver about conditions that could severely damage the motor. If this system is not working properly and one of the conditions occurs, severe engine damage is possible.

What repairs can fix the P0196 code?

  • Replacing the EOT sensor
  • Replacing the EOT sensor electrical connector
  • Repairing damaged wiring
  • Repairing other systems that can contribute to this code being set

Additional comments for consideration regarding the P0196 code

The P0196 code is very similar to the P0195 code and the P0196 code is more commonly utilized by manufactures. There are some very subtle differences between them that lead to some ambiguity. The diagnosing of either code is almost literally the same. It is left up to the individual manufacturers to decide how they want to manage their respective EOT systems.

Need help with a P0196 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
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