99 Intrigue crank sensor code

Hello group, I have a 99 Olds Intrigue, 3.5 L double OH cam engine. About 1 in 3 starts, I have to crank the starter for several seconds before the engine starts. The other times, it starts normally. When it is hard to
start, it sometimes hesitates when accelerating and then is OK until the next 2nd or 3rd start. A "crank sensor" code comes up after a few hard starts. Would a crank sensor be intermittent as described above? Would replacing it solve the problem? Any help appreciated. Thanks, Gary
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Crank sensor's have magnets inside. The magnets over time can get weak. You might also check the wiring circut for the crank sensor. Charles
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dogdayyesterday wrote:

I would think that, in general, it is more likely that the connection is intermittant. Try cleaning that first. (I don't know, off the top of my head where it is on that engine.) GW
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It's behind the starter motor, close to the exhaust manifold, behind the engine. It can only be reached from under the car.
The senor can only be found in dealers for about $120. Because the car still goes without it, though not optimally, I'd advise you to wait two weeks for the part (#10456594) buying it at http://gmpartsdirect.com for about $60, including S&H.
HTH
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Every 3.5 Intrigue I've worked on with this symptom (many) needed the crank sensor.
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Any tips on replacing it to a weekend mechanic?
TIA
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You'll have to do it from under the car. Putting the car on ramps may be good enough. Disconnect the battery. Remove the plastic splash shield. Unbolt the starter and let it hang down. You'll probably need a long screwdriver or some such to get the connector off the sensor. There's one 10mm bolt holding the sensor in. You'll need a swivel 10mm socket to get on it. Unscrew the bolt and pull the sensor out of the block. (This procedure is definitely more difficult than it sounds here, and there will be little room to work).
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And a possibly hot exhaust manifold inches from it... Yeah, it does sound worth a mechanic's hour rate.
FWIW, when I had to have it replaced, it cost me about $200 at a dealer (a private garage wanted to charge an extra hour for diagnosis), but had I purchased the sensor on-line, it would have cost me about $150. Nothing that would bankrupt me, but $50 are $50...
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