How To Test a Nissan 350Z Camshaft Sensor

How To Test a Nissan 350Z Camshaft Sensor


The 350Z camshaft sensor in your Nissan is also known as the CMP or camshaft position or angle sensor. This part allows your engine computer to quickly recognize and determine engine speed as well as camshaft position. If this part starts going out you will see several Nissan 350Z problems that can even include your 350Z not starting.

Your three pin camshaft angle sensor is a hall effect style, with a power, ground and signal wire. This phase sensor picks up on the retraction of the intake camshaft identify a particular cylinder. The 350Z camshaft sensor picks up on the high and low parts of the teeth on the intake camshaft.

The change in the gap creates a specific magnetic gap that changes the voltage from the sensor. Through this information your camshaft position sensor can determine piston position. Today I will be showing you how to test your 350Z camshaft sensor in a 2005 Nissan with the 3.5 liter VQ35DE engine in it.

Nissan 350Z Camshaft Sensor 2

In order to test your 350Z camshaft sensor you will need to use a digital multimeter. Your 350Z camshaft sensor is located on the driver side of the engine, near the back of your cylinder head underneath your throttle body. While removal of the throttle body or intake manifold is not needed it’s recommended if you want the job to be easier.

Nissan 350Z problems from a bad Cam Sensor

Because this is a crucial engine sensor, chances are you will know right away when the cam angle sensor goes out. Here are some of the other common Nissan 350Z issues when this CMP sensor is bad.

  • Bad gas mileage
  • Engine misfire
  • Pinging or engine pre-detonation
  • Nissan 350Z won’t start
  • Check Engine Light ON

When you need to fix your Nissan 350Z check engine light, you must use an OBDII scan tool. This device allows you to read the stored Diagnostic Trouble Code as well as clear your service light. To begin our VQ35 camshaft testing guide, we’ll begin with the power wire.

Testing the 350Z Camshaft Sensor for Power

Reach behind your throttle body and disconnect the three pin connector. With the connector facing towards you, check PIN 3 or the left most wire for power. Make sure that your 350Z ignition is turned to the “ON” position before testing this wire.

How To Test a Nissan 350Z Camshaft Sensor 3

With the key turned to “ON” PIN 3 should return a switched voltage. If you have power here at this pin, the next wire to check for is the ground circuit.

The wire you want to check on the Nissan 350Z is shown as PIN 1 on the wiring diagram. If there’s a ground circuit present here, then your camshaft sensor is getting the power and ground it needs to operate.

The last part of our test involves measuring the internal resistance of this sensor to check for an open condition. To do this you will more than likely need to remove the throttle body if not the upper intake manifold to your VQ35 engine.

How To Test a Nissan 350Z Camshaft Sensor 4Turn the dial on your multimeter to measure resistance Ω. You will be probing pairs of pins on your 350Z camshaft position sensor to ensure there’s still an internal resistance.

You are making sure there is not an open or ∞ value between these camshaft sensor pins.

How To Test a Nissan 350Z Camshaft SensorThe pin combination to check first is terminal A and terminal B. The second combination is between PIN A and PIN C.

The last combination to check is PIN B and PIN C. Remember that you are checking for the internal resistance.

As long as your digital multimeter does not return a 0 or ∞ value, your 350Z camshaft sensor is okay.

If your 350Z camshaft sensor does not respond as this How To guide specifies, remove the 10mm bolt and take out the faulty sensor. Install a replacement camshaft angle sensor and then you can use your OBDII scan tool to clear any stored DTC codes you may have.

Have any questions about this camshaft position sensor testing guide? Leave us a comment below and let us know!