Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor: A Complete Guide

Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor

Crankshaft position sensor or CPS functions to transfer the spark timing data to the CPU of Jeep Cherokee. But, a faulty CPS will disturb the accurate ignition system. Hence, it is mandatory to replace the faulty CPS to ensure the better performance of your vehicle.

But how to Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor? First, you have to identify the bad CPS. Then, locate the place of the CPS, and detach it from the jeep by removing the screws and cables. Next, you must install a new CPS following the same steps in reverse sequence.

In this article, we will discuss when you have to replace the CPS. You will also learn why CPS fails and the procedures for replacing faulty CPS. Without further ado, let’s dive into the article.

Crankshaft Position Sensor

What Causes A Bad Crankshaft Position Sensor?

Before you replace the bad CPS of your vehicle, you should know the reasons behind this issue. Here are several reasons for a bad crankshaft position sensor:

1.     Magnetic Issues

Magnets of the CPS are capable of attracting metal shaving onto the wheel or the sensor. This creates a connection between these two parts and hampers the distance calculation. As a result, the CPS system will fail.

2.     Faulty Wiring Circuit

Due to unforeseen reasons, the wires that connect the ECU and the sensor may get damaged. These damaged or worn-out cables won’t be able to transfer signals from the sensor to the engine.

3.     Damaged Pin And Wheel

The CPS gets the signal of pulses from the pins and wheel. If the wheel or pins get cracked, damaged, or worn out, the CPS will not get an accurate pulse reading. As a result, the CPS will malfunction.

When To Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor?

You should know when to change the CPS to protect your car’s engine from further damage. There are several symptoms of malfunctioning CPS that will notify you about a faulty CPS. Those are:

1.     Flashing Of Check Engine Light

A faulty CPS won’t be able to measure the rotation speed of the crankshaft. Thus, the engine sensor will not also function correctly. As a result, the dashboard of your jeep might keep flashing the check engine light.

2.     Issues While Starting

Malfunctioning CPS disturbs the signal of sending fuel to the jeep’s injectors. As a result, the engine doesn’t get adequate fuel for starting and faces troubles while starting.

In some cases, when the CPS fails, the engine will not get fuel at all. Hence, it will not start regardless of how many times you try.

3.     Sudden Stop Of Engine

If the CPS is damaged, your car will malfunction more at low speed than at high speed. Sometimes, faulty CPS can cut off the fuel transmission while the car is at low speed. As a result, the vehicle will come to a complete stop.

4.     Poor Fuel Economy

A faulty CPS is unable to send the signal of accurate ignition timing. As efficient fuel injection operations will be hampered, the engine will end up using more fuel than ever.

5.     Ignition Problems

As the bad CPS fails to send accurate notification of spark time to the ECU, you will face an ignition issue. The engine will not get adequate fuel for the ignition due to the lack of proper timing.

As a result, several cylinders may misfire. You will also hear the shuttering noises coming from the engine.

6.     Slow Acceleration

At low speeds, the jeep will require a low amount of fuel which increases with increasing speed. Thus, the adjustment of fuel injection is mandatory for successful acceleration.

But, a faulty CPS will disturb the adjustment in this fuel injection. This will result in a slow acceleration of your Jeep Cherokee.

How To Test The Bad Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor?

Though you will encounter a few issues and signs of faulty CPS, you still need proper confirmation about the faulty CPS. There are some techniques to confirm faulty CPS.

In this process, you will need a power probe, digital multimeter, and diagnostic scanning tools. Now, those techniques are:

1.     Checking The Connection Wires

If you are facing the signs that we mentioned before, you should check the connection wires of the CPS first. Check if there is any damage and wear in the connections. Sometimes, a loose connection of cables with the CPS can also cause the issues we mentioned before.

2.     Checking DTC

This is the simplest way to detect the failure of CPS. There are several diagnostic trouble codes (DTC) in the computer of your Jeep Cherokee. If your car’s CPS fails for any reason, the scanning tool will show those trouble codes.

  • P0315
  • P0335 to P0339
  • P0385 to P0389

3.     Reading The RPM

You can also check the condition of CPS through its revolution per minute. Use a scanning tool for this. When scanning a perfectly well CPS, it will show reading around 100 rpm to 500 rpm.

But, if your Jeep’s CPS reading is less than 100rpm, you have a faulty CPS. However, if you find out that the reading is zero, you need to replace the CPS as soon as possible.

4.     Checking With Digital Multimeter

You can also use a digital multimeter to test your Jeep’s CPS. You have to take the reading from both the low and high-voltage sides.

Generally, the low voltage side will have 0.2 volts, and the high side will have a value of around 1.5 volts. If you don’t get this expected voltage value, that will mean that the CPS is already damaged.

How to Replace Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor?

You can replace the faulty CPS yourself or with professional help. If you call a mechanic to replace the CPS, you need to pay a high labor cost. That’s why you should try to replace it yourself, as the procedure is relatively straightforward.

In this case, you will need these tools

  • Screwdriver
  • Ratchet
  • Wrench
  • The socket of different sizes, etc.

Here are the processes for replacing the CPS:

1.     Disconnecting The Battery

For disconnecting, inspect the battery, and you will find a black wire. This black color cable connects with the negative terminal of a battery.

Now, you have to pull out the black color wire from the battery.  Make sure the wire doesn’t touch the battery accidentally during the following steps.

2.     Locate The CPS

As the position of CPS differs with the car models, you need to locate the position of CPS in your car. In jeep Cherokee, it locates in the bell housing. Normally, you will find it near the driver’s side, almost halfway down.

The CPS has a cable that keeps it connected to the engine. Also, it has two screws of 7/16 inches to keep it in position.

3.     Pulling Out The Screws

Once you locate the position of the CPU, you need to pull out the screws from the CPS.  You can use a wrench to pull out these screws to remove the CPS from its position.

4.     Disconnecting The Cable

Now, you have to disconnect the cables that connect the CPS to the engine. A clip above 6-8 inches of the cable attaches the bell housing and the cable. First, you have to pull out the cable from the clip.

Another end of the cable connects with the main circuit through a connector. You also need to disconnect the cable end from the connector.

5.     Remove The Faulty CPS

You will disconnect the CPS from the Jeep by disconnecting both ends of the cable and pulling out the screws. Now, remove the disconnected cable and damaged CPS from your jeep.

6.     Install The New CPS

The installation process of the newly bought CPS is the same as the removal process but in a reverse sequence. You have to install the 7/16-inch screws with a screwdriver.

After that, you need to attach the cable with the bell housing clips and the main circuit’s connector. Make sure that any connections of the sensor are not loose.


In this FAQ section, we will answer some questions about the replacement of the Crankshaft sensor position in the Jeep Cherokee.

Is Replacing Jeep Cherokee Crankshaft Position Sensor Costly?

If you can replace the CPS yourself, it will be less costly because the new CPS will only cost around $70 to $120. However, the mechanic cost can be higher at $220 to $290. Thus, CPS replacement will be costly for you if you seek help from a mechanic.

Is It Safe To Drive The Jeep Cherokee With A Faulty CPU?

If your car’s engine keeps functioning despite a faulty CPS, you can drive it. But, if you notice that the engine is misfiring, backfiring, or flashing a check engine light, you shouldn’t keep driving the jeep Cherokee.


The crankshaft position sensor of the Jeep Cherokee ensures accuracy in spark time, calculating the rotation speed of the crankshaft. But, due to continuous operation, failure in CPS may occur with time. This failure will result in various problems that may damage the engine soon.

If you have been here from the start, you already know when to replace Jeep Cherokee crankshaft position sensor. We also discussed the replacement procedure of CPS. Therefore, you must follow those steps to replace the CPS yourself. Otherwise, you have to pay a mechanic for this CPS

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