MAF Sensor Failure in Porsches

Posted on: February 4, 2019

Porsche vehicles are well known for having exceptional performance and comfortable design. However, even a Porsche will have car problems from time to time. Most of these problems can be offset by regular maintenance, but every so often, certain models fall victim to common malfunctions.

This is the case with the Cayenne and Boxster Porsche models in particular, where issues sometimes arise with components like the mass airflow sensor. This sensor works with the other parts of your car to keep things running smoothly, and even the beginning of failure can cause problems with other parts in the car, which can compound until something very bad happens.

The MAF Sensor

The mass airflow sensor works in tandem with your engine. A Porsche cannot run without a fully functioning mass airflow sensor, or MAF. This component is responsible for determining how much air goes into your engine. This works in conjunction with the electronic control unit by measuring the rate of airflow into your engine and relaying this information to the electronic control unit which subsequently determines the amount of fuel necessary for ideal combustion. If your MAF sensor stops working properly, it can cause problems with the electronic control unit and the fuel system.


There are different symptoms of MAF sensor failure which manifest in different subsequent problems. You might notice issues with your fuel. There are two fuel related symptoms that could arise. The first is called running rich. The second is called running lean.

Running rich means that the engine is using too much fuel and not enough oxygen. Running lean means that the engine is using too much oxygen and not enough fuel.

Either situation can cause damage to many components in your Porsche. If you notice that your car has a reduced fuel economy, is stalling, idling, or running rough, these are all symptoms indicative of MAF sensor failure. The sooner you get the issue resolved, the less likely it is to cause problems in other areas of the car.

Fixing Failures

If you notice a potential MAF sensor failure, our expert Porsche technicians can take a look. If the part can be repaired or cleaned, we will do just that. But if it can’t, then we will recommend you remove it and replace it. In some cases, a simple removal of the sensor and quick cleaning is all it takes. However, it takes special tools and skills to safely remove a MAF sensor, which vary from one Porsche model to the next. For that reason, it is not recommended that you try to do it yourself, even if you think the culprit is nothing but build up that needs to be cleaned off.

One of the biggest causes of MAF sensor failure is debris. As soon as motor oil, dirt, and other debris begins to build up, it can clog the sensor and damage it. When you get regular oil changes, and when you go the extra mile—figuratively—to remove dirt and debris from your motor oil, it can go a long way toward preventing problems with your sensor. Taking your car in for regular inspections and tune ups will also help you to catch an issue with sensor failure early, before it gets worse.

Porsche Cayenne

Ask Our Professionals

Our team of professional service technicians at European Auto Service Center Inc. are trained on Porsche vehicles with years of training and Porsche expertise from each. Issues with mechanical components are a headache, but issues with electrical components can be even worse. That is why it is important to turn to a professional as soon as you notice a problem. We can help you to diagnose a problem with your MAF sensor and rectify the issue immediately. Remember that these problems require specific tools, and anything to do with your fuel line is best left to professionals. If subsequent damage has taken place, we know where to find it and how to fix it.

We have Aventura/Miami, Boca Raton East, and Boca Raton West locations, all dedicated to getting your car back on the road in no time. Whether you think your Porsche has a problem with the MAF sensor or you just need regular maintenance, let us help.

* Porsche Cayenne image credit goes to: typhoonski.

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