What Are the Different Types of Automobile Sensors?

Most cars have a throttle position sensor, manifold pressure sensor, engine coolant temperature sensor, mass air flow sensor, camshaft and crankshaft position sensors and a oxygen sensor. Automobiles also have detonation sensors, EGR sensors and intake air temperature sensors.

Each automobile sensor has a unique function to ensure safety:

  • The throttle position sensor (TPS) is used to control the shifting in an automatic transmission.
  • The manifold pressure sensor tells the engine control module how much power the engine is putting out.
  • The coolant temperature sensor calculates proper fuel delivery and ignition timing.
  • The measurement of outside air entering the engine is regulated by the mass air flow sensor.
  • The crankshaft positions sensor calculates the cylinder position and the engine speed.
  • The detonation sensor is used by the control module to regulate the ignition timing.
  • The oxygen sensor works to produce voltage based on the amount of oxygen in the engine’s exhaust.
  • The intake air temperature sensor uses information about temperature to control a vehicle’s fuel delivery.
  • EGR sensors adjust fuel delivery and control and help to provide diagnostic information to the control module.

If any of these sensors are malfunctioning, the “Check Engine” light may come on inside the car, or the engine may run roughly. Mechanics can pull codes for many of these sensors to help solve the problem.