How to fix the P0013 Code

Diagnostic trouble code (DTC) P0013 stands for “Exhaust “B” Camshaft Position Actuator Circuit/Open (Bank 1). It’s a generic OBD-II code that relates to the variable valve timing (VVT) also known as variable camshaft timing components. It’s not a very common problem but still happens amongst vehicles.

As a vehicle owner, it is always safe to know as much as you can about your vehicle.

You won’t just be saving your car from severe damage; you might just be also saving your life and that of your passengers. Here is an in-depth review of the P0013 Code.

What Does P0013 Code Mean?

In a traditional engine, valve timing is fixed. But in an engine with VVT, the camshaft position can be adjusted, thereby altering valve timing. The result is improved performance, increased fuel economy, or both.

The primary components within the VVT system are the camshaft actuators (also known as phasers) and the VVT solenoids (also known as camshaft position actuator solenoid valves).

The camshaft position actuator solenoid valve controls the oil flow to the actuator, which in turn, advances or retards the camshaft.

Solenoid operation is controlled by the car’s primary computer, also known as the powertrain control module or PCM. The P0013 code gets logged if it perceives a problem with the camshaft actuator solenoid or its circuit.

What are the Causes of the POO13 Code?

Manufacturers may have different names for the P0013 code, and the possible causes may differ depending on the make and model of your car. Here are the most common causes of an exhaust camshaft position actuator solenoid valve control circuit problem or code P0013:

Bad camshaft position actuator solenoid

The first and most obvious cause for a P0013 code is a faulty actuator solenoid, also known as a VVT solenoid. This is the case when the solenoid has failed all of a sudden and stopped working.

This could be attributed to age and miles. Also, less frequent oil changes and sludgy oil can greatly ruin the performance of this sensor and basically ruin the component.

This is why frequent oil changes and also using the right oil type for your car are essential when it comes to this type of component and preserving them and making them last for the years to come.

Problems with wiring harness and connectors

Another probable cause for a P0013 code can be a problem with the wiring harness. The wiring harness can fail and cause a code like this. Wires are constantly exposed to the elements And the heat that is created inside of the engine bay. So, the rubber coating on the wires can fail and cause them to short.

Whenever you have a short in the wiring you might have a situation with open-circuit all of the time.

That’s why it is often advised that you check the connector for possible rust build-up. As well as if you get a proper signal from the PCM to the solenoid.

You can do this with a multimeter tool. There are a ton of resources that you could use to find a solution for this problem and ways to measure the values and hopefully sort the P0013 camshaft position actuator code.

Bad timing components

Bad timing components can also be a cause for the P0013 code. But which are these timing components? Well, these include the parts that are in charge of the engine timing. It can be called the timing belt or chain depending much on the car that we are talking about.

In addition to this, the camshaft pulley and the actuator itself can be faulty in some cases and can attribute to a problem like this with the code P0013. So, beware of this.

Symptoms of Code P0013

Decreased Engine Performance

One possible sign of code P0013 is decreased engine performance. If your car is running slowly, or if it’s harder to speed it up, this could be a sign that something is wrong.

It’s important to remember that there are many possible causes of decreased engine performance. So, if you’re worried that this is happening to you, it’s best to take your car to a professional.

Engine Has Hard Time Starting

If your engine is having a hard time starting, it could be a sign of code P0013. This code indicates that there is an issue with the camshaft position sensor.

The camshaft position sensor monitors the position of the camshaft and sends signals to the engine control unit. If this sensor isn’t working properly, it can cause the engine to have a hard time starting.

Increased Fuel Consumption

One of the most common symptoms of code P0013 is an increase in fuel consumption.

This can be caused by a number of factors, but the most common is a problem with the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system. When the EGR system is not working properly, it can cause the engine to run rich, which will lead to an increase in fuel consumption.

How much will it Cost to fix the P0013 Code?

If it’s only the exhaust solenoid that needs replacing, expect to pay $20 to $60 for the part, depending on the make and model of your car.

It should take a skilled mechanic no more than an hour to diagnose the problem. Since labor rates vary by location and vehicle make and model, expect a cost of $75 to $150 per hour.

In total, expect a bill of $95 to $210 or a little bit more, depending on the exact nature of the problem and the time it takes to replace the part in question.

Final Thoughts

It is important to properly diagnose and repair problems associated with the P0013 code as soon as possible. If left untreated, the engine in the vehicle could stall and leave the driver stranded.

Applying the proper diagnosis and repairs can prevent a driver from being stuck on the side of the road with an inoperable vehicle.

Also, hiring a professional mechanic is a great way to ensure that the proper diagnosis and repairs will be performed.