P0496 Code: EVAP Flow During a Non-Purge Condition

The evaporative emissions control (EVAP) system is a major part of the vehicle. This part of your vehicle helps to control the emission of the exhausts. It also assists to improve the engine performance.  The powertrain control module (PCM) continuously observes the EVAP system performance. When your EVAP system experiences an issue with the purge flow, the PCM triggers the P0496 code. This article mainly explains the P0496 code symptoms, its causes, and how to fix it.  

P0496 Code Definition

The P0496 code stands for “EVAP Flow During a Non-Purge Condition.”

What does P0496 Code Mean?

The P0496 code indicates that the powertrain control module (PCM) of your vehicle detects your evaporative emission (EVAP) system is experiencing an issue with purge flow.

P0496 code

The evaporative emission control (EVAP) system of your vehicle helps to seal the vehicle’s fuel system to stop the escaping of the fuel vapors from the fuel system and fuel tank to the environment.

The fuel vapors contain various hydrocarbons. When fuel vapors go into the atmosphere, hydrocarbons of the vapors generate smog after reacting with sunlight and air.

The purge flow is the amount of fuel vapor that enters the engine through the tubes. The fuel vapors generally depend on the amount of air entering the evaporative emission system from the intake vacuum.

The intake vacuum of your vehicle transfers the fuel vapors from the charcoal canister to the engine. When the fuel vapors enter the engine, they are combusted in the combustion chamber.

The PCM of your vehicle regulates the intake vacuum flow to the EVAP system. A canister is one of the major parts of the EVAP system that also collects fuel vapors from the gasoline tank. An intake vacuum normally directs air into the canister and allows fuel vapors to move via the purge valve when it opens. 

Your PCM only triggers the P0496 trouble code when it detects high purge flow in the EVAP system. It indicates that more air enters the charcoal canister, which increases the delivery of fuel vapors to the engine.

Symptoms of the P0496 Code

  • In most cases, the check engine light illumination may be the only symptom of the code P0496.
  • Your vehicle may also have rough running and other engine performance issues if fuel vapors are purged at the wrong time.
  • Hard to start the vehicle. The accumulation of fuel vapors in the engine compartment may cause problems starting the car.
  • Poor fuel economy (rare).

Causes of P0496 Code

  • Clogged charcoal canister
  • Missing or damaged gas cap
  • Clogged vapor canister
  • Bad purge valve
  • Bad EVAP pressure sensor
  • A leakage in the EVAP system hose
  • Plugged EVAP canister
  • Damaged or bad vent solenoid
  • A leak in the fuel tank
  • Damaged or corroded wiring to the EVAP system
  • Loose connections to the EVAP system
  • Clogged purge control valve
  • Leaking charcoal canister

How to Diagnose the P0496 Code

  • Use an OBD-II scanner to confirm the existence of the P0496 code.
  • Collect the freeze data and analyze it to find the root cause of the problem. Clear the codes and perform a test drive.
  • Check the electrical connections and wires of the EVAP system for damage or corrosion.
  • Properly inspect the purge volume control valve for a stuck open condition.
  • Check the fuel cap of your fuel tank for damage or leak.
  • Inspect the fuel tank for a leak or damage.
  • Inspect the EVAP pressure sensor for damage.
  • Inspect the vapor purge valve system for damage.
  • Inspect the purge control valve for damage.
  • Inspect the EVAP system for leaks. To check a leak, use an EVAP smoke machine leak checker to pressurize the EVAP system. If you observe a smoke leak from the EVAP system seals or hose, immediately repair the leaks.

Common P0496 Code Diagnosis Mistakes

  • Not properly inspecting all the parts of the evaporative emission system.
  • Replacing the purge control valve before inspecting the system for a leak.
  • Replacing the EVAP pressure sensor or purge control valve before inspecting the electrical connections and wiring.

What repairs can fix the P0496 Code?

  • Replacing the leaked or faulty fuel cap
  • Tightening the fuel cap if it is loose
  • Fixing the fuel tank leaks
  • Fixing the vacuum hose leaks
  • Replacing the faulty EVAP pressure sensor
  • Replacing the bad purge control valve
  • Cleaning the clogged purge valve
  • Repairing the damaged wirings to the EVAP system
  • Fixing the leaky charcoal canister
  • Replacing the bad charcoal canister
  • Replacing the bad PCM

P0496 Code Repair Cost

To fix the P0496 code, you need one or more of the below-given repairs: 

PartsCost
EVAP lines repair$20 to $110
Gas cap replacement$20 to $70
Fuel gauge sender replacement$240 to $410
Purge valve replacement$140 to $320
PCM replacement$240 to $3000

FAQ Section

Can I drive with the P0496 Code?

Yes, you can drive with the P0496 code. This code doesn’t generate severe drivability issues. Mostly, your check engine light starts illuminating when PCM detects the P0496 code. This code indicates a problem with your EVAP system. Therefore, you should fix the issue as soon as possible. Your car may fail the emission test when your EVAP system goes bad.

How serious is the P0496 Code?

The P0496 code is not a serious trouble code. This code indicates a leak in the EVAP system. This code doesn’t generate much drivability issues. The only thing that could happen is the check engine light flashing. The existence of this code may increase exhaust emissions.

How to fix the P0496 Ford?

To fix the P0496 ford, you need to fix one or more below-given parts:

  • Replacing the leaked or faulty fuel cap
  • Replacing the bad charcoal canister
  • Tightening the fuel cap if it is loose
  • Fixing the fuel tank leaks
  • Fixing the vacuum hose leaks
  • Fixing the leaky charcoal canister
  • Replacing the faulty EVAP pressure sensor
  • Replacing the bad purge control valve
  • Clogged purge valve cleaning
  • Repairing the damaged wirings to the EVAP system
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