Error Code P0022 is defined as Camshaft Position A – Timing Over-Retarded, Bank 2. This indicates a problem on the VVT or VCT (variable valve timing, variable camshaft timing, respectively) components of the vehicle’s PCM (powertrain control module, also known as ECM), which means there’s an over-retarded (over delayed) timing condition on the intake camshaft timing of bank 2.


Error Code P0022 is a generic OBD-II error code, which, as mentioned above, entails a problem in the Bank 2’s intake camshaft timing, and that it’s more retarded (delayed) that what the PCM commands it to be. This condition could result during the advancing or retarding phase of the camshaft timing.  The “A” camshaft refers to either the intake, front, or left camshaft.

Common Symptoms

Obviously, this error code activates the Check Engine light of the vehicle. Apart from that, the common symptoms include:

  • Hard starting
  • Hesitation on acceleration
  • Stalling
  • Poor idle
  • Decrease in fuel mileage/ poor fuel efficiency
  • Emission of black smoke out of the tailpipe
  • Emission of excessive fumes out of the engine

Drive complains may vary, depending on the camshaft timing.

Possible Causes

Error Code P0022 is usually caused by incorrect camshaft timing or a defective (stuck open) VVT oil flow control valve. Other common causes include:

  • Wiring problems (caused by harness or wiring) in intake timing control valve solenoid system, causing the VVT oil flow control valve to continuously receive voltage
  • Continuous oil flow to the VCT position chamber
  • Sticking of VVT oil flow control valve due to varnish buildup or oil contamination
  • Stuck open or retarded cam phaser
  • Broken cam phaser return spring (applicable for helical gear phasers only)

How to Check

For troubleshooting, use the scan tool to check the status of the VVT oil control valve. Usually, it must be On at high engine RPM, and Off at idle. For pulse width modulated control valves, the duty cycle should change with the RPM.

If the commands of the PCM to the VVT oil flow control valve are correct, but the cam phaser is still not changing its cam timing correctly, or returning back to its base timing after delayed (retarded) command, this means the VVT valve is continuously allowing oil flow to the cam phaser, or the latter may be stuck open in a fully delayed position.

Engine off, remove the oil flow control valve and then test the solenoid through application of voltage. If the solenoid still doesn’t move, then that means it’s faulty and needs replacement.

How to Fix

As with many error codes, the fix for this problem will require a road test, and prior to performing the road test, you need to reset the fault code.

Then, replace the engine oil  and the filter, using the right oil viscosity for that particular car and engine. Dirty oil causes the accumulation of grime and dirt, and affects the oil control valve and the phaser.

Check for any fault in the wiring and repair or replace anything that needs fixing in the camshaft OCV (oil control valve).

Replace Bank 2 camshaft oil control valve intake camshaft.

Check the cam phaser for any signs of damage.

Check timing chain alignment.

If the VVT oil flow control valve solenoid is defective, then replace it. If that still doesn’t solve the problem, then your cam phaser may be stuck open and will need replacement.

In the assembly and disassembly of the cam phaser, make sure you read and follow the manufacturer’s instruction manual.

Make sure you verify failures before attempting any repairs.

Lastly, never replace parts unless you’re 100% sure it’s what is causing the problem, or visual testing tells you so.