What Does Code P0216 Mean on Dodge Cummins? (How to Fix It)

Diagnostic Trouble Codes or DTCs are cryptic error signals used by modern vehicles to help quickly identify and diagnose malfunctions. Likewise, when your Dodge Cummins displays these codes, it paves the way to communicate between your vehicle and the computer, telling what’s going on with the engine.

Code P0216 is one such DTC that frequently pops up on Dodge Cummins. The error code P0216 on Dodge Cummins denotes a problem with the injection pump’s timing. Several factors are responsible for this, but most often, it’s caused by fuel delivery issues within the Cummins engine.

Continue reading to find out more about the P0216 code on Dodge Cummins. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about this code, including the problem it indicates, its symptoms, causes, fixes, and associated costs.

What Does P0216 Code Mean on Dodge Cummins?

Code P0216 on Dodge Cummins is defined as Injection Pump Timing Sensor Circuit Malfunction. This code is triggered when the computer detects that the timing of the injection pump is not within your vehicle’s specification or is not in line with your ECM.

The timing sensor is responsible for monitoring the position of the injection pump. When this sensor malfunctions, it can cause the engine to run erratically or fail to start altogether.

Here’s a breakdown of what the code has to do with this problem.

  • P = Powertrain, the system of components that propels your car forward
  • 0 = a generic number derived from the SAE standard
  • 2 = Fuel and air metering (Injector circuit malfunctions)
  • 16 = Specific fault index (In our case, this denotes injection pump timing sensor circuit)

How Serious Is P0216 Code on Dodge Cummins?

The severity level of P0216 can vary. In some cases, it may just cause your engine to run rough. However, it can cause the engine to stall or fail to start in other cases.

It’s important to have this code diagnosed and repaired as soon as possible. If left unchecked, it can render the injection pump inoperable and cause extensive engine damage.

What Are the Symptoms of the P0216 Code on Dodge Cummins?

The symptoms of the P0216 code on Dodge Cummins can vary depending on the severity of the problem. In some cases, there may be no symptoms at all. However, in other cases, you may experience one or more of the following:

  • Engine runs rough
  • Decrease in power
  • Hesitation upon acceleration
  • Trouble starting after crank
  • Rough idling
  • Engine starts, then stalls
  • Hard time exceeding a certain speed, say, 25 mph

What Causes P0216 Code on Dodge Cummins?

The P0216 code on Dodge Cummins can be caused by many things. However, the most common cause is fuel delivery issues within the engine. This can be caused by-

  • A clogged fuel filter
  • The air within the fuel
  • An in-tank blockage
  • A faulty transfer (lift) pump
  • An out-of-time injection pump

Other causes include-

  • Camshaft position sensor malfunction
  • Crankshaft position sensor malfunction
  • A faulty powertrain control module
  • Broken fuel injection circuit wiring

How to Fix P0216 Code on Dodge Cummins?

The best way to fix the P0216 code is to take your truck to a certified mechanic or dealership. They will have the tools and expertise to diagnose and repair the problem properly. Yet, if you want to try and diagnose the problem yourself, here are the steps you’ll want to take-

Step 1: Check for Injection Pump Timing Adjustability

The simple thing you should do first is check the injection pump timing to see whether it’s adjustable. If it is, you can try to adjust it and see if that fixes the problem.

Step 2: Inspect the Fuel Lines and Filters

If the injection pump timing is not adjustable, the next step is to inspect the fuel lines and filters. Start by checking the fuel filter for any clogs or debris. Check the fuel lines for leaks or blockages upon finding the filter clean.

Step 3: Check for Air in the Fuel

Another common cause of the P0216 code is air in the fuel. This can be checked by bleeding the fuel system. Simply open the bleeder valve and see if air bubbles come out. The problem is most likely due to a faulty transfer (lift) pump if you see air bubbles. And that means your Dodge Cummins has a fuel delivery problem.

Step 4: Inspect the Lift Pump Operation

During 25 seconds of operation, the lift pump on the Dodge Cummins engine should produce around 45 oz of diesel.

To ensure this, disconnect the injection pump’s fuel hose and pump the fuel into a proper container. Then, turn the key, but do not turn the ignition on. Let the lift pump run for 25 seconds. Repair the fuel line if the fuel is still aerated.

Step 5: Check the Fuel Pressure

With the fuel hose connected, you should have a fuel pressure of 10 psi in your Dodge Cummins. If the pressure is below this number, you likely have a faulty lift pump, which needs a replacement.

Step 6: Check for Defects in the Injection Pump

If the fuel pressure is adequate, the next step is to check for any defects in the injection pump. A simple way to check this is to remove the timing cover and see if the drive gear is stripped. If it is, you will need to replace the entire injection pump.

Although less likely, it’s recommended you also check for broken circuit wiring, camshaft position sensor malfunction, and crankshaft position sensor malfunction, besides the above steps for a proper diagnosis of the P0216 code.

How Much Does it Cost to Fix Dodge Cummins P0216 Code?

The cost to fix the P0216 code on Dodge Cummins can vary depending on the problem. For example, if the problem is simply a dirty fuel filter, the fix will be relatively cheap. You can expect to pay around $80 for parts and labor.

However, if the problem is caused by a faulty lift pump, the cost will be much higher. A new lift pump can cost anywhere from $400 to $700.

Additionally, the cost will increase if you need to replace the entire injection pump. This can cost upwards of $1500. The labor cost of these repairs will be anywhere between $100-$200.

Can You Drive Your Dodge Cummins With code P0216?

You shouldn’t drive your Dodge Cummins with the P0216 code. This is because the damage has already been done to the injection pump from lack of lubrication by the time your truck sets this code. Further driving will only exacerbate the damage, leading to a complete failure of the injection pump.

Besides that, you’ll risk voiding your truck’s warranty if you continue to drive with this code and the vehicle has already covered 100k miles overall.

Conclusion

Hopefully, we’ve helped you better understand the P0216 code and what it means for your truck. If you drive a Dodge Cummins, it’s good to familiarize yourself with these DTCs, as they can help diagnose problems quickly while saving you time, money, and plenty of frustration down the road.

While the steps we’ve covered should help you solve the problem, it’s best to consult a qualified mechanic for a more accurate diagnosis. With their experience and expertise, they will be able to correct the problem promptly and efficiently.

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