mass air flow sensor


Asked by Jul 24, 2008 at 04:27 PM about the 1999 Pontiac Grand Prix

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 1999 grand prix gt.  My service engine light came on and i went to auto store and used the computer.  It indicates the mass air flow sensor is problem.   So I tried some cleaner and reset the light. all was well but then the engine started a little rough one morning and it came back on. the engine runs great after that initial start, idles fine etc...  I would like to just replace the mass air flow sensor but want to make sure its not something else.    The car has about 110k miles.   On a 150 mile trip the light actually went off but when i restarted car after a bathroom stop, it came back on.    What do you think.   I have taken readings at the auto store several times.  always   mass airflow sensor.

24 Answers


oh yeah , its 3.8l

12 out of 12 people think this is helpful.

what did the exact code read? There are several different codes related to the mass airflow sensor.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

i will go get a reading tonight again.


What did you use to clean it? Try brake clean or carb clean. Take a Q tip and lightly run it over the wire that runs across the diameter of the sensor and try that. If that still doesn't get rid of the code, replace the the sensor.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

ok, i went and got the read again. it says 7 of 8 readiness then i go to look at code and it only says " Mass or Volume Air Flow Circuit Low Input" no other codes. I asked if it should have some more codes and dude said you may not be getting additional codes cause its a new problem.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

The sensor itself is going out, cleaning it will not help. Replacing it is your option. FYI, use of any spray cleaner on the mass airflow sensor is NOT reccommended. In general, cleaning of any kind on most mass airflow sensors are NOT reccommended.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

replace the mass air flow sensor you should see a increase in fuel economy

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

ASE certified tech, and I've done this my whole career. A small piece of dust or dirt on a mass air flow sensor does not warranty replacing it. Cleaning it does not hurt it.

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

Thanks. Sounds like it for sure my mass air flow. I don't feel to bad about going out and buying one.


Then Jeff, you should know that a small piece of dirt would not effect it. A large piece of dirt would (and could be removed by hand.) I am also ASE, not a hard test if you know what you are doing.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I replaced the mass airflow sensor and all is well. I am also the proud owner of a new socket set that I will probably get very little if any use out of haha. thanks

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Yes it will affect it. Look, I'm not going to get into an argument with you about it. I've had engines with MAFs run like crap, and cleaning the MAF took care of the issue. Using something like brake clean or carb clean which is not oil and completely evaporates does not harm it.

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

Thus why I said don't use oil to clean it, where are you getting that from?


just change it cause it's gonna getr worse


the mass air flow sensor doesn't change the way the car runs for the most part. My lights been on for almost a year but I couldn't find an upgraded sensor. My car also was rough off the start but then runs fine after a minute sometimes it would die out right after I started it, the problem turned out to be the fuel pump resistor but I went through three mechanics who told me it MAS

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

Well I put a new MAF sensor in and it took care of the idol issue i was having when i start the car. Runs perfect again. So I lucked out without going to the shop. Yay for me, and thanks everyone.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

If you are going to clean the sensor that is fine - just use electronics cleaner DO NOT USE brake cleaner or wd40 or PBblaster or etc. such as

Jeff,where were you ASE certifed,Wal-Mart,you never spray anything in a MAFF.


My maf is cracked on top and engine code says maf is bad. When I excellerate or go uphill the engine sounds like a lawn sprinkler. Is that the maf?


Replace it with a new one and keep it moving...


Went to replace it and found out quick that my manifold was replaced before with a 98 engine because the maf had a square hole and the hole was round. It fixed the engine light but I still have the sputter


You definitely can clean the MAF sensor. They make spray that is specifically designed for this that leaves no residue. Obviously if the sensor is bad cleaning it will not help but if it's just dirty cleaning it should suffice. I'd try a $8 fix over paying $100 or more for a new sensor any day. I had a CEL for 'mass air flow sensor performance.' I took it out, cleaned it with the spray, put in a new air filter and voila. No more CEL and car is running great again.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have a 1995 grand prix its running really rich every time I start it all I can smell is gas don't know what the problem is

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I have 2001 grand prix. The RPM jumps back and forth and the battery light indicator come on and dies sometimes. Cleaned the MAF sensor did not fix it. I am going to replace it hoping that fixes it. Any other ideas

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