How To Test a Chevy Cavalier MAP Sensor

How To Test a Chevy Cavalier MAP Sensor


The Chevy Cavalier MAP Sensor is a barometric pressure sensor that’s designed to deliver information about the air coming into your engine. This MAP sensor is otherwise known as the Manifold Absolute Pressure sensor, and it reads the pressure in your intake manifold. Your Cavalier Powertrain Control Unit (PCM) uses this information to deliver the right amount of fuel to your 2.2 liter engine.

Today I will be showing you how to replace the Cavalier MAP sensor in a 2000 Chevy. This 4 cylinder 2.2 liter engine is currently running lean because the MAP sensor is delivering low voltage signals to the PCM. This MAP sensor is connected by way of a three pin weatherproof connector, and I’ll be showing you how to test the sensor to see if it’s any good.

chevy cavalier map sensor

Because this Manifold Absolute Pressure sensor is responsible for measuring pressure in your intake manifold, you will need to use a multimeter. If you aren’t sure how a multimeter works, or even what it is check out our guide here.

How To Test your Cavalier MAP sensor for Power

To begin our how to guide you will need to open your Chevy hood and locate the MAP sensor. In order to test the MAP sensor for power and ground, you need to insert your Cavalier ignition key and turn it to the “ON” position. This delivers power to your engine sensors, and you can now test your MAP sensor using this guide.

chevy cavalier map sensor 2

To test for power and ground you will need to connect the black lead of your multimeter to the negative terminal of your battery. Now you will be disconnecting the three pin MAP sensor connector, and gently probing the front of PIN A connector.

chevy cavalier map sensor 4

This is the power wire to PIN A, and you should see 5 volts of power here. If you have power at this wire, the next wire you will need to check is PIN C. This is the low reference ground signal wire, and it’s required for your MAP sensor to power up. If you don’t have ground here double check your engine grounds and the straps from your engine to your chassis.

How To Test your Cavalier MAP sensor for Signal

The last leg of our How To guide will require you to use a backpin or paperclip that you can push through the signal wire. Because the MAP sensor requires power and ground in order to operate, you will need to reconnect the harness. At this point you can insert your backpin, or the unbent paper clip through PIN B or the middle wire.


Now comes the dangerous part of our guide, because you will need to start your engine. Keep your hair and clothing free of the drive belts and any part of your engine. Start the engine and carefully measure the voltage coming out of the middle wire.

Make sure the transmission is in neutral and your parking brake is engaged. Rev the engine and monitor the voltage coming out of the sensor. The voltage from this pin should range from .9-4.9 volts depending on the pressure at the sensor.

Your MAP sensor should read between these ranges and you should not have any missing sections or spikes in voltage. If the MAP sensor is not responding in a positive manner, or the voltage falls outside these ranges, you must replace your Cavalier MAP Sensor immediately.

Have any questions about our Cavalier MAP Sensor how to guide? Leave us a comment below and let us know!