OBD2 Code P0011: What It Means

Figuring out why your Check Engine Light is on means deciphering OBD-II (or “OBD2”) codes, and that can be kind … Continued

Figuring out why your Check Engine Light is on means deciphering OBD-II (or “OBD2”) codes, and that can be kind of annoying. That’s why Car Bibles did it for you! You’re welcome, now let’s get into solving your issue.

OBD2 P0011: What It Means

Many modern engines have Variable Valve Timing (VVT), which lets the computer adjust the timing in which valves stay open, creating better economy and performance.

Code P0011, or “Camshaft ‘A’ Timing Over-Advanced (Bank 1),” says that your car’s computer has noticed the intake cam on bank 1 is too advanced.

In short, your computer expects the camshaft angle to be one thing, letting the valves stay open, but in reality it is too far ahead of where it should be. Camshaft A refers to the intake cam. If this is a “V” or “Flat” engine, bank 1 refers to the bank of odd-numbered cylinders, starting with cylinder 1.

Likely Symptoms 

  • Hard starting, poor idle, stalling. Modern VVT engines are constantly adjusting fuel/air to provide optimal performance and economy. If a VVT sensor is out of spec, the computer will have a hard time compensating.
  • Check Engine Light. P0011 will cause a CEL.
  • Poor fuel economy. A too-advanced camshaft means the fuel to air ratio is out of whack, and your engine is not operating efficiently. 

Probable Causes

  • Dirty or incorrectly spec’ed oil. Dirty or sludgy oil may be clogging a VVT sensor or solenoid, rendering inoperative.
  • Low oil. VVT sensors rely on oil pressure to run, if oil pressure is too low it may not function.
  • Incorrect engine timing. A timing belt or chain that is “out of time” could cause the code to appear.
  • Failed sensor or electrical wiring – a broken sensor or no power to the sensor may render it inoperative.

What Part Is Potentially Affected?

Aside from the drivability issues, an engine running in improper time could damage other parts such as the valves, camshafts, and other pieces. If the code is caused by low oil, engine part degradation could be occurring due to lack of proper lubrication of engine parts.

Possible Fixes

  • Change oil and oil filter. Fresh, in-spec oil may cause VVT sensors to start correctly functioning.
  • Replace and repair the VVT oil sender/solenoid(s).
  • Check and readjust engine timing. Rarely the whole engine may be out of time.

Finding The Parts You Need

Now that you’ve figured out what’s wrong with your hooptie, let’s talk about where you’re gonna find that part’s replacement.

There are plenty of places you can buy auto parts from, but Car Bibles gets paid if you click this Advance Auto link so that’s the one we’re serving up. Advance Auto Parts also has delivery, curbside pickup, and a host of helpful diagrams to aid your repair!

Kevin Williams

Kevin WilliamsKevin's been into cars his entire life, anything from the tiny kei cars in Japan, to the maybe not-so-good American barges of the 1980s. He's flipped more than 25 cars, only lost money twice, and has known how to make his dollar stretch as far as it can. If he ain't talking about cars, he's probably snacking on something sweet and cakey. Contact the author here.