2001 Kia Sephia engine codes and problems


#1

I have a 2001 Kia Sephia that quit running as I was driving down the road. The car has a little over 150,000 miles on it and was running fine prior to the incident. The car was responding fine and then suddenly acted as if it lost power and shut down as I was driving. I put a code scanner on the car and retrieved the following codes: 342, 460, and 713, which I understand are the camshaft sensor circuit low input, fuel level circuit malfunction, and transmission temperature circuit high input. Is this a computer that has failed or just all the sensors at once failing? If it is the computer, which one(s)? I was trying to do research and if I saw right, there are more than one ecm’s now on cars. Thanks in advance for any help.


#2

Do you mean:
P0342, P0460, and P0713? I’ll assume so by your descriptions.

These three things are three completely different issues. Was your check engine light on before this? I.e. is it possible that any of these codes were already present before this happened?

If not, then I would start combing the wire looms for any obvious damage. Having all three of these things go wrong at once would be really - odd.

The computer is a possibility, but you’d want to find out the cause of that so that if you replace it you don’t cook a new one.

Of the three codes, the one most likely to stall the car and leave it dead is the cam sensor problem (P0342). Note that like most every code it is a circuit code, not a part code.


#3

The engine lot was not on prior to this happening, and yes you are correct with the P0 codes. With the cam sensor issue, if you are saying it is a circuit code, then replacing the sensor itself would not resolve the issue then? How would you check the circuit? I can work on the older cars and replace parts, but these computer components are above my knowledge, I just haven’t ever dealt with them.


#4

My sister-in-law also had the engine die and the same code was in the ECU. Turns out the timing belt broke. You may want to check your timing belt before replacing that sensor.


#5

Concur that the cam sensor is the first problem here to figure out. A broken timing belt wouldn’t be that unusual at 150 K if it is the original belt. I’d assume it is a broken timing belt until that was disproved by visual inspection, so best to not attempt to start the car as doing so may damage the engine further.


#6

How many miles are on the timing belt? The fuel level sensor and transmission fluid temp codes are probably not related to the stalling. Those codes may have been there for some time, they will not turn on the check engine light.

How does the engine sound when you try to start it? If in fact the timing belt broke it’s going to be an expensive repair.


#7

Come to think of it, I think the car has given me the transmission code and the fuel level sensor code in the past. The camshaft sensor is a new one though.


#8

The timing belt was replaced at around 60000 miles. The engine spins and doesn’t sound like it has any compression when I try to crank it.


#9

Your last sentence makes me think it’s the timing belt. I don’t know for sure what the replacement interval is, but if it was replaced at 60,000 miles, then wasn’t it due again at 120,000 miles? Unfortunately, this is an interference engine, so you’re probably going to be spending a lot of money unnecessarily for an engine repair or replacement if that guess is right.


#10

“The timing belt was replaced at around 60000 miles. The engine spins and doesn’t sound like it has any compression when I try to crank it.”

90,000 miles on a timing belt that’s scheduled to be replaced every 60,000 and sounds like no compression. If I were a betting man (and I certainly am) I would guess that the timing belt broke. I don’t think I’ve seen a Kia engine break a timing belt that didn’t result in engine damage.


#11

The OP can count me as one more person who is pretty sure that the timing belt snapped.
Going 30k miles past the specified interval for changing a timing belt is not a good idea, especially when the engine is of the interference design.

If we are correct about the timing belt having snapped, I think that it would be a good idea to replace the car, as the amount of money necessary for major engine repairs (in addition to the cost of timing belt replacement) could very possibly be more than the book value of this 13 year old car.


#12

This also sounds like a broken timing belt problem to me based on the cranking while appearing to have no compression statement.

This should be an interference fit engine so codes, sensors, and whatnot are out of the loop at this point as the engine likely has severe damage.


#13

Thanks everyone for the help. I have found that it was a broken timing belt. I have found parts on the internet, and a friend who does machine work, and can get the car fixed for around $350 with new valves/seats, timing belt/tensioner, gasket set, and new head bolts. My problem I have seen now is earlier in the cars life, about 2 or more years ago, I tried a high mileage oil in the car, not knowing it was synthetic, and then went back to a regular oil on the next change. The oil gummed up inside and came out as a black tar substance on the next oil change, so after some engine cleaner that I ran through it, I got the gunk out and cleaned the engine with a couple of oil changes after a few hundred miles there after. There is a residue of gunk left on the top of the cylinder head now. Can I take the head to the car wash after removing it to clean this gunk off, or will this hurt the cams/cam bearings that are still attached? I don’t want to do any further damage if I can avoid it. Again, thanks in advance for the help.


#14

Odds are a car wash won’t clean this as thoroughly as it needs to be cleaned. That usually requires vatting it out at an auto machine. A car wash certainly won’t hurt it though as long as ferrous metal parts are not allowed to develop rust.

Based on the description I would also doubt that the inside of that engine is as clean as it is perceived to be. Gunk like this is also rough on crankshaft journals and crankshaft bearings.
There’s no way of knowing the condition of the crank journals/bearings unless abnormally low oil pressure shows up once it’s running again or the oil pan is dropped; followed by bearing cap removal and physical inspection.