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Home> How To> Repair Throttle Position Sensor> What is a Throttle Position Sensor?

What is a Throttle Postion Sensor?





The throttle position sensor in your vehicle serves as a potentiometer (a three-terminal resistor with a sliding contact that forms an adjustable voltage divider used for measuring electric potential) that sends variable voltage signals to your cars computer to tell it just how much the throttle plates have been opened up. The purpose for your throttle position sensor is to provide the engine with the data necessary to calculate the proper mix of fuel and air needed by the engine at a particular moment for optimal performance. The throttle position sensor in your vehicle sends a low voltage signal—generally less than 1 volt—to indicate a throttle that is completely closed. Voltage is added as the throttle is opened up. The maximum amount of volts is generally 5, which tells your main computer that the throttle is completely open.


If your car is experiencing acceleration problems, it could be due to a faulty throttle position sensor. If the sensor is sending the incorrect information about the throttle position to the engine, the engine will not create the necessary air and fuel mixture. Any miscommunication between the sensor and the engine can cause your car to hesitate during acceleration, creating a lurching feeling when you drive. A worn down sensor will often have “dead spots”. These “dead spots” create miscommunication each time the potentiometer passes them, creating uneven and turbulent acceleration. The most common “dead spot” is just above the normal idling position, which is why cars often lurch forward when you first press on the gas pedal. If you are looking for a replacement throttle position sensor, Buy Auto Parts has a full inventory of sensors for all makes and models. Just visit our online store, to search for the correct throttle position sensor for your vehicle.



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