The internal combustion engine requires the proper amount of air and fuel to be mixed in its chambers before ignition. The amount of air that goes into the engine is measured by the mass airflow sensor. Once the sensor calculates this amount, it relays the information back to the engine control module. This information is used by the module to determine how much fuel to send to the chambers of the engine before combustion takes place. It also helps the module time the ignition properly.
The engine control module expects a certain level of output from the mass air flow sensor. If the output level is out of range or acting irregular, then it can cause a whole series of problems. Some of which include the Check Engine light coming on, weak acceleration, engine misfiring, engine idling, weak fuel economy, and black smoke emitting from the tailpipe.
If you experience these symptoms and see trouble code P0101 after running a diagnostic scan, then it means you have a mass air flow sensor circuit problem. The most obvious cause of this problem is a faulty mass air flow sensor. But there could also be wiring issues, vacuum leaks, faulty intake manifold gaskets, bad intake air boot, bad barometric pressure sensor, dirty mass air flow wire, or outdated software for the engine control module.
You can get away with driving under these conditions for a little while. Your car won’t immediately fail, but it’ll still consume more fuel and drive rather roughly. This could make it unsafe to drive on the road and cause you to spend more money than usual at the gas pump. If you continue to let this problem go unfixed, then your internal combustion engine could become permanently damaged and fail altogether. Then you’ll be forced to either replace the engine or the entire car itself.
- P0700: Transmission Control System Malfunction
- P0430: Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 2)
It is so much easier and cheaper to replace the mass air flow sensor early on or whichever component has caused the problem. Just let your local mechanic investigate the problem, and they’ll give you a price estimate on how much it will cost to fix or replace the component.