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Can You Drive With A Bad Mass Air Flow

Can You Drive With A Bad Mass Air Flow: How To Fix It?

In driving a car or truck, there will be many factors that affect its performance. For a vehicle to work effectively and promote its inherent potential, it is necessary to have a good amount of working gas.

But if you drive the car with bad air, will the car move? It is probably a big question for many users.

Therefore, the information below will answer your questions about whether driving with insufficient air volume is possible.

Mass Flow Sensor Classification

Mass Flow Sensor Classification

On the market today, most manufacturers equip hot-wire MAF sensors, and others are less common. However, this article will give you the full range of sensors. Typically, MAF sensors will come in four types.

#Hot wire MAF

One wire is responsible for heating, and the other is for keeping the temperature. For this type, the amount of PCM gas is calculated based on the amount of current gas to ensure that the temperature of the hot wire at 200°F~93.33°C is more desirable than the cold wire.

The MAF can quickly increase or decrease the current going to the heater wire, causing less or more air to enter the vehicle from the temperature difference. Its primary purpose is to balance the ratio of fuel and air.

#Propeller airflow sensor

It is to include a voltage converter or a transformer. As air enters, this pressure gauge measures the volume of air.

#Cold Wire Sensor (MAF Cold Wire)

Its mechanism of action is to use a thin metal strip that vibrates when air passes through. Then, the vibration frequency values are sent to the EMC (engine control module) through the signal to calculate the air volume.

#Karmen Votrex MAF

This sensor also performs the same task as the other three. But in it, there is a difference between a mirror and a photocoupler creating a vortex.

Can You Drive With A Bad Mass Air Flow?

Can You Drive With A Bad Mass Air Flow

With a bad mass airflow sensor, you can still drive usually. However, it would help if you remembered to only operate for short periods. It will not interfere with the user’s driving process, but we will notice that the engine is slow, the conversion process in the device takes place inefficiently.

If the condition of the airflow sensor has insufficient mass for a long time, your engine may be damaged. And the most dangerous thing is that during driving, you will encounter unnecessary accidents caused by this sensor because you’re making it run while the air turns into fuel.

When a sensor (MAF) fails, the system will not transmit information to the PCM. Therefore, the PCM cannot regulate the fuel that the MAF sends and causes the vehicle equipment to work poorly or possibly not work at all.

It is necessary to repair or use a mass air flow sensor cleaner alternative 102 in such a bad condition. That costs about $200. But if leaving the low-mass airflow sensor for too long leads to engine failure, the repair cost can reach $7,500. Therefore, we need to carefully check whether the sensor is working correctly and fix it in time.

About A Bad Mass Air Flow

About A Bad Mass Air Flow


  • Maybe due to long-term running, the car has many layers of dirt, oil, and tiny objects. These factors contaminate the MAF and lead to misoperation and damage to the sensor.
  • And sometimes, users don’t pay attention to the signs of sensor problems. Gradually, it will deteriorate over time. Users will have to spend a lot of money to repair it.

#Common Sign

  • Engine stalls or jerks during solid acceleration.
  • The engine makes strange engine noises.
  • Noise when turning steering wheel while stationary 100
  • Compared to normal, the device is much more challenging to boot. And if it is already on, it will shut down immediately.
  • white smoke from exhaust when accelerating 88

#How To Fix It?

  • Check if the tip of the sensor collides with the joint
  • Please take a close look at its measuring components
  • Check the connection between the power supply and the spark plugs
  • Monitor the output voltage to see if it behaves strangely
  • Test plug controller with transmitter sensor
  • Use automatic control electronics to test MAF

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ’s)

Is it possible to drive without the check engine light?

You can still drive generally if there is no check light when the air mass sensor is bad. According to the instructions, the lost test light may be because you have permanently turned it off.

In such cases, you should go to the experts to see if the device has a light or because it is inherently not. If the light is lost, we should immediately equip it and fix the poor air mass sensor so that the engine can work properly again and prolong its life.

How to check MAF air mass flow?

The user can unplug and test drive the car to test the air mass flow to see if it runs properly. If true, the MAF is faulty. Then we need to clean or go to the car repair shop to repair it in time.

How to clean the MAF?

The way to clean the MAF is also quite simple. You need to find and buy a CRC spray bottle. When air is injected, the sensor is cleaner and easier to control. And the cost to buy a spray bottle is not too expensive, so you can rest assured about the price.


The article has provided some essential information to help you answer whether it is possible to drive with a bad mass airflow sensor.

Although still driving usually, we should check the sensor to ensure safe use and improve the quality of the engine. I hope the above article will help you to gain more knowledge.

Thank you for reading!

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