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'98 Civic DX throwing p0336 code

Hello, first time poster and probably won’t be the last time I’m searching for car help on here… So I’ve got a '98 Civic DX and I typically do a lot of my own maintenance on the car because it’s a fairly easy engine to work on and youtube has a lot of good videos on how to do basic stuff like spark plugs and O2 sensors. Even did the distributor recently.

So yesterday, I hop in and start the engine up and start off on the road and the car is slow and rough to accelerate. That’s when a check engine light pops on. As I’m trying to get it to accelerate, I feel the car trying to shift and it seems to stutter as I hold down the gas so I let off and the car shifts up. So it continues to accelerate roughly and even stalls a few times on the way to work that day while stopped at intersections.

When I’m leaving work for the day, the car starts fine and runs like normal, despite the check engine light being on. So I check the code and it comes up p0336 - Crankshaft Position Sensor ‘A’ Circuit Range. Does this sound like a faulty CKP sensor or could there be some underlying issues here?

Sure could be. If the CPS is faulty, then the computer doesn’t know when to fire the spark plugs or pulse the fuel injectors. While I’d do a check of the sensor’s wire to be sure it’s not grounding out against something metal and intermittently disrupting the signal, I’d suspect it’s entirely possible the sensor itself is failing.

Could certainly be the sensor is getting “iffy”…you might try checking that the connector is clean and tight.

Looking at Haynes. There are 3 sensors in the distributor that could be the issue. Test them by checking for 350-700 ohms resistance at these terminals on the electrical connector at the corner of the dist.:
CKP terminals 2 and 6.
TDC terminals 3 and 7
CYP terminals 4 and 8
Continuity to ground indicates the distributor should be replaced. Ouch.

There is also CKF (Crankshaft Fluctuation Sensor) under the timing belt cover, down near the front end of the crankshaft. Between the two outer terminals of the connector there should be 1.6-3.2 k-ohms resistance.

Good luck!

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The symptoms are consistent with a problematic crank position sensor. Without that function working 100% accurately, the engine computer doesn’t know at what point in the piston phase (as it goes up and down) to fire the spark plugs. How that function works varies by car to car. On older cars it was done mechanically & indirectly, the distributor cam pushing the points open, middle aged cars it was a combo of electronic sensors in the distributor, still an indirect method, and newer cars it is usually done directly, a sensor next to the crankshaft that senses its position.