Fault code P0510 – closed throttle position switch malfunction

Fault code P0510 is called “Closed Throttle Position Switch Malfunction” but in different programs it may be called differently. This fault designation applies to all vehicles equipped with OBD-II.

Technical description and explained code P0510

This Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) is a generic powertrain code. Error P0510 is considered a general code because it applies to all makes and models of vehicles. Although the specific repair steps may vary slightly from model to model.

Fault code P0510 – closed throttle position switch malfunction

Some vehicles may have a switch on the throttle body or lever mechanism. This tells the PCM control module that the throttle is in the fully closed position.

When the throttle is closed, the switch must also be in the closed position.

The PCM uses this switch in conjunction with the idle control valve. This is necessary to keep the engine running at idle as well as to reduce fuel consumption during coasting.

Some vehicles may also have a wide open throttle position switch. If the wide open or closed throttle position switch is not engaged. The PCM will assume that the throttle is partially open, affecting the vehicle’s air/fuel ratio.

Error code P0510 usually appears on vehicles with a throttle system that does not use a gas pedal cable. If the actual throttle position differs from the desired position within a certain time, the code will be stored and the Check Engine light will illuminate.

Symptoms of vehicle malfunctions

The main signal that an error P0510 has occurred is the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) is also known as the CheckEngine Light.

It can also be warning signs such as:

  1. Check engine control lamp on the control panel will light up (the code will be recorded in the memory as a malfunction).
  2. The engine stalls or starts poorly.
  3. The engine idle speed is low.
  4. The engine cannot be accelerated, throttle response is unresponsive.
  5. Bad acceleration.
  6. Engine stalls on releasing the accelerator pedal.

Error P0510 is quite serious, as it can cause problems with throttle control. It is advisable to correct the fault as soon as possible to avoid more serious consequences.

Factors that can cause this error code

The error code P0510 can mean that one or more of the following problems have occurred:

  • Throttle closed position switch malfunction.
  • Break in wiring harness or poor electrical connection.
  • Damaged connector or contacts.
  • Throttle body idle stroke adjustment screw is damaged.
  • Throttle choke return spring is jammed.
  • Engine control module (ECM) is defective.

How to fix or reset OBD-2 code P0510

Some suggested steps for troubleshooting and fix the error code P0510:

  1. Read all stored data and error codes with an OBD-II scan tool. To find out when and under what circumstances error P0510 appeared.
  2. Clear the error codes from the computer memory and test-drive the vehicle to find out if the malfunction appears again.
  3. Visually inspect the electrical wires and connections for looseness and damage.
  4. Check the throttle closed position switch.
  5. Check the return spring as well as the adjusting screw for proper operation.
  6. Clear the error code from the computer memory again, and test drive the vehicle to see if the problem is resolved.

Diagnose and repair of problems

Carefully check the throttle closed position switch, connector, and wiring for breaks, etc. Repair or replace if necessary to clear error P0510.

Check the voltage at the switch, it should be between 0.45 and 0.17 volts (some vehicles may have different values). If the voltage is too low or too high, this indicates a problem. Replace the switch if necessary.

If the throttle body lever mechanism does not touch the switch or closes completely. The idle speed set screw may not have been adjusted correctly. Adjust the idle speed set screw to the specifications.

If there are no symptoms, the problem may be intermittent, and clearing code P0510 may temporarily solve the problem. If this is the case, you should definitely check the wiring again to make sure it’s not chafing or frayed anywhere.

Some throttle bodies do not come with serviceable sensors, this means that the entire unit must be replaced if the problem occurs.

On which vehicles does this problem occur most frequently

Fault code P0510 can occur on different vehicles but there are statistics on which brands this occurs most often. Here is a list of some of them:

  • Chevrolet (Aveo, Lacetti, Optra, Rezzo, Spark)
  • Daewoo (Matiz)
  • Fiat (Doblo, Punto)
  • Hyundai (Santa Fe)
  • Kia (Sedona, Sorento)
  • Mazda (Millenia)
  • Mitsubishi (Montero)
  • Nissan
  • Toyota (Tacoma)
  • Volkswagen (Beetle, Jetta)

Fault code P0510 can sometimes be found with other errors. The most common are the following: P0122, P0133, P0134, P0172, P0175, P0302, P0455, P2125.


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