Getting stranded in the middle of nowhere with a car that’s low on gas is no fun. This is precisely what might happen to you if you let Code P0463 go untreated.
If your “Check Engine” light has popped up and Code P0463 is being displayed, it’s best to get it sorted out as soon as possible to avoid bigger problems down the line.
DTCs, or diagnostic trouble codes, are the way your car’s onboard computer diagnoses different issues. If your onboard computer signals by lighting the “Check Engine” light and the code P0463 displays, chances are that your fuel level sensor is malfunctioning.
What Does Code P0463 Mean?
The Powertrain Control Module, or PCM, is in charge of receiving signals from the fuel level sensor. That information goes back to the dashboard where the fuel gauge accurately displays the fuel level in the gas tank and informs us when we need to stop for gas.
Code P0463 occurs when the fuel level sensor is sending fuel levels to the PCM that are higher than the actual gas levels in the tank. This triggers the Code P0463 and the “Check Engine” light on the dashboard.
Alternatively, the fuel gauge on the dashboard might display inaccurate or fluctuating fuel levels during this error.
The precise definition of Code P0463 is “Fuel Level Sensor Circuit High Input”. The fuel level sensor consists of a float located in the gas tank and an arm attached to it.
The arm has grounding through the fuel tank and, as its resistance changes, the voltage varies to indicate a fuel level. All fuel level sensors have a circuit threshold, which will trigger the Code P0463 if reached.
Symptoms of Code P0463
There are not many symptoms associated with Code P0463, but the most obvious ones are:
- The “Check Engine” light – Whenever a Code P0463 is triggered, the “Check Engine” light will flash on the dashboard.
- The “Low Fuel” light – Quite often, as inaccurate readings from the fuel level sensor reaches the PCM, the fuel light on the dashboard will flash.
- Fluctuating and inaccurate fuel gauge readings – The malfunctioning fuel level sensor can display false information, including full and empty gas tank readings.
Causes of Code P0463
Although there are very few symptoms of Code P0463, there are quite a few potential causes. It can be quite challenging to locate the cause of the Code P0463 reading, but these are some of the most common ones:
- Faulty fuel level sensor
- Faulty or malfunctioning float in the fuel level sensor causing inaccurate fuel readings
- Faulty fuel level pump – Some car models have a fuel level sensor as the part of a fuel level pump
- Fuel level sensor circuit is open or has a short
- The ground circuit is either open or has high resistance
- The damage to the fuel tank
- Corrosion in the fuel tank
- Faulty PCM
Is Code P0463 Serious?
Code P0463 is classified as a low priority issue, as it will not affect the performance of your car or the driving experience. However, it might be a cause of serious inconvenience, such as unexpectedly running out of as on the road.
Therefore, we recommend that you take care of the issue as soon as Code P0463 shows up, along with the “Check Engine” light.
How to Fix
The diagnostic and repair process for Code P0463 is quite straightforward and easy to follow. Yet, there are some areas of the process that need special attention, to minimize the potential cost of repairs/replacements.
These are the steps you or a repair technician will need to take:
- Hook up your favorite OBD2 scan tool to check whether additional codes are present in the system. Use the tool to clear the Code P0463 from the system, along with the Check Engine light.
- Go through the freeze frame data and the fuel gauge to locate the issue. Pay special attention to whether the reported fuel levels are too low or too high.
- Add additional fuel into the tank to test the fuel gauge reading. Make sure to note whether the fuel gauge accurately indicated the fuel level after addition.
- A common mistake is to stop the diagnostics and start repairs before checking the wiring and connections around the fuel level sensor and harness. The sensor might be fully-functional, and the issue connected to the wiring.
- If, after all the checks and repairs, the Code P0463 is still showing, it might be time to replace the fuel level sensor, or in some models, the whole fuel pump.