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P0103 Mass Air Flow MAF Circuit High

Technical Description

Mass or Volume Air Flow Circuit High

What does that mean?

This diagnostic trouble code (DTC) is a generic powertrain code, which means that it applies to OBD-II equipped vehicles that have a mass airflow sensor. Brands include but are not limited to Toyota, Infiniti, Nissan, Jaguar, Audi, Mercedes, Dodge, Hyundai, Chevy, Ford, etc. Although generic, the specific repair steps may vary depending on make/model.

The MAF (mass air flow) sensor is a sensor mounted in a vehicle's engine air intake tract downstream from the air filter, and is used to measure the volume and density of air being drawn into the engine. The MAF sensor itself only measures a portion of the air entering and that value is used to calculate the total volume and density of air being ingested.

The powertrain control module (PCM) uses that reading along with other sensor parameters to ensure proper fuel delivery at any given time for optimum power and fuel efficiency.

This P0103 diagnostic trouble code (DTC) means that there is a high condition detected in the Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor or circuit. The PCM detects that the actual MAF sensor frequency signal is not performing within the normal expected range of the calculated MAF value.

Note: Some MAF sensors also incorporate an air temperature sensor, which is another value used by the PCM for optimal engine operation.

Closely related MAF circuit trouble codes include P0100, P0101, P0102, and P0104.

Photo of a MAF sensor:
MAF Sensor Mass Air Flow

What are some possible symptoms?

Symptoms of a P0103 code may include:

What are some potential causes?

Potential causes for this trouble code may include:

Note that other codes may be present if you have a P0103. You may have misfire codes or O2 sensor codes, so it's important to take a "big picture" look at how the systems work together and effect each other when doing a diagnosis.

What can I do to diagnose and repair a P0103 engine code?

If you do need to replace the MAF sensor, we recommend using an original equipment OEM one from the manufacturer rather than buying an aftermarket part.

Note: The use of a reusable oiled air filter could be a cause of this code, if it is over-oiled. Oil can transfer to the fine wire or film inside the MAF sensor and contaminate it. Use something such as MAF cleaner spray to clean the MAF in such situations. We do not recommend the use of oiled air filters.

Related P0103 DTC Discussions

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