Engine problems can be a source of anxiety for vehicle owners. While cars may display certain signs and symptoms, the idea is figuring out what exactly is wrong. Perhaps your engine is running slowly or the MIL light (check engine light) turns on.
Yes, an OBD-II scanner can be of help, revealing error memory in your vehicle’s system in the form of codes. Should you be concerned if your scanner shows the valve pause system stuck off? Keep reading to find out the possible causes and the practical solutions offered in this article.
What Is the Valve Pause System Stuck Off?
The VPS (Valve Pause System) is a major component of the Powertrain Control Module (PCM). The instrument cluster can show up a few signs when the system goes bad. Your Honda comes down with the P3400 code or P3497 code when diagnosed. What do these codes stand for?
The P3400 code can as well be ready as “Cylinder Deactivation System Bank 1” “or VPS Stuck Off Bank 1”. When this happens, fuel and emissions are mostly affected. It often results in high engine emissions while the fuel economy is reduced. Associated symptoms can be engine vibration, engine running slowly, sudden stall, fuel consumption increase, limp mode activation and check engine display light or the MIL (Malfunction Indicator Lamp).
A cylinder deactivation system is a setup that allows an engine to function on less than the installed number of cylinders without any effect on the engine’s power production. Thus, the car’s fuel and gas consumption is reduced since it runs on a few cylinders.
Of course, the appearance of the P3400 shouldn’t stop you from driving your car. On the other hand, if the oil or oil pressure becomes affected, it can lead to high repair costs resulting from severe damage. Your car may begin to experience symptoms like an increase in fuel consumption.
The error code P3497 or “VPS Stuck Off Bank 2” is an indication that the intake valve for the second cylinder is not responding to switches as decided by the PCM. The cylinder deactivation system stops the fuel supply to the deactivated cylinders and closes the valves on them.
In such cases, the PCM will detect a change from the standard set by the manufacturer in the second bank or fails to activate the deactivation system. When this ‘deviation’ happens, the message is quickly passed to the vehicle owner through the ‘check engine’ lights or the MIL. Other signs include an increase in fuel usage, check engine light signal, service engine soon warning and poor engine performance.
Possible Causes of Valve Pause System Stuck Off In Honda
Common causes of the error code P3400 and P3497 in a Honda are:
- Disruption in the passage of oil
- Decrease in oil level
- Damaged throttle position sensor
- Damaged oil pressure sensor
- Bad filters
- Shortage of oil on the lifters
- Faulty oil pressure sensor
- Electrical connection problems especially in the cylinder deactivation solenoid
- Faulty mass airflow sensor
How To Fix The Error Code P3400
- Use a scanner (OBD II) to view Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) in the PCM to figure out where and what exactly is wrong.
- Tackle oil pressure issues first
- Replace the filter and the oil
- Check for any quirky wiring and repair
- Inspect the connectors and clean the corrosion
- Rectify the deactivation of solenoid
- Thoroughly clean the oil passageway to prevent further blockage
- Repair or restore the faulty Engine Control Module (ECM).
- Then clear all trouble codes using the scanner.
- Inspect solenoid 1 and replace it if damaged.
- Check and clean oil passageways down to the lifters
- Inspect solenoid 7. If not functioning, check and clean oil passageways down to the lifters.
- Change the lifters if necessary.
- If the entire engine is full of grime and dirt, you can dismantle the engine parts for a thorough clean-up.
How to Fix The Error Code P3497
- Check the oil gauge and ensure it is not grimy or dirty. Then change the oil if dirty, to prevent oil pressure problems.
- Check the pressure switch sensor and carefully use a deep socket to remove the wire plug.
- You can now remove the sensor itself.
- Install a new one properly to avoid oil leakage.
- Connect your diagnostic scanner to your vehicle to inspect the wiring and other connections.
- Check for associated codes like misfire codes and oil pressure codes.
Can I drive with Code P3400?
My blunt advice is that you should check your vehicle as soon as a sign pops up on the dash. While it is not unsafe to drive with a P3400 code, you’d do better if you have your vehicle checked at the earliest time. The sign of this code doesn’t pose any severe threat or damage to your vehicle.
Yet, how will you feel if you learn that your engine is running on all eight cylinders at the same time? That’s definitely not a good lesson to learn, is it? But as long as the code is active with its symptoms, the eight cylinders will run and you might experience reduced fuel economy and increased exhaust emissions.
The P3400 error code is a signal that the Cylinder Deactivation System in Bank 1 has a problem. This leads to poor engine performance and increased fuel consumption. The P3497 error code indicates a Valve Pause System Stuck Off in Bank 2. Fixing these problems may not require much time, depending on the expertise of your mechanic and the actual issue.
Although these codes may not cause prompt damage to your vehicle, if left unattended, could threaten the efficiency of your car’s engine. A stitch in time saves nine, they say. Therefore, diagnose it as soon as you can. If it seems too technical to handle yourself, get the help of a professional to check the affected part and rectify the problem.