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spoooolin, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Lexus
Satisfied Customers: 93
Experience:  ASE Master ASE L1 Multiple years of Dealership experience with two manufactures
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Camshaft position sensor issues. Car won't start. Hot

Customer Question

Camshaft position sensor issues. Car won't start. Hot battery. Starter tested. After "Check VSC" light came on, ran diagnostics and codes read Camshaft position sensor malfunction. Will this cause the car to not even turn over?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Lexus
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  spoooolin replied 1 year ago.

Are there any other codes in the system besides camshaft sensor?

This will not prevent the engine from turning over, so there is something else going on here.

What work has been done to this car recently?


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi,No work has been done on the car since I purchased it used two years ago. It has 132K on odometer. I came home for lunch yesterday and leaving the car wouldn't start back up. The systems check indicates normal, press brakes and it makes a whining sound as if starter is engaging but the engine won't turn over, then the indicator flashes check VSC. I pulled the starter and bench tested is at the parts store and its operational. I've tried the gas cap trick and a few other things from researching the forums.Thank you
Expert:  spoooolin replied 1 year ago.

take the oil cap off while someone is inside the car. look at the cam shaft and have someone try to start it. does the camshaft move?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Took the battery to parts store. They said it only had 45% and was bad so I put a new one on. Still having the same issues. No parts can be seen moving when the oil cap is off.
Expert:  spoooolin replied 1 year ago.

If no parts can be see moving, and it sounds like its spinning really fast, that means you have a timing chain that has came apart, generally b.c. of a timing chain tensioner. The timing chain keeps the camshafts and crankshaft all in sync, so when you start the car the crankshaft is spinning but not the cam shafts, the engine computer sees that difference and sets the code.

The only way to determine the root cause of this failure and what exactly happened is to remove the engine, and remove the front cover to see whats going on. I attached a diagram of what it SHOULD look like and also as a visual to my explanation as to what happened. I really hate to be the one to tell you that bad news that its not a simple fix.

Please feel free to ask any other questions you do have and I will be more than happy to answer them.

Also, please do not forget to rate me since that is the only way I get credit for my answer from this website.

Thank you!!