P0696 Cooling Fan 3 Relay Control Circuit High

Description and meaning of DTC p0696

This is a generic powertrain diagnostic trouble code (DTC) applicable to most 1996-newer vehicles. Specific repair steps can vary from make/model. The fans that are used to cool the engines radiator are run by electric motors. These motors are turned on and off by the powertrain control module (PCM) according to the readings from the engine coolant temperature sensor (ECT). In other words when the ECT reaches a predetermined temperature the PCM turns the fans on. Then when the ECT cools to a predetermined temperature the PCM turns the fans off. The PCM controls the cooling fans by sending a ground signal to the cooling fan relay. The voltage on the signal circuit is high, around battery voltage, when not commanded on (not grounded). The opposite is true when commanded on (grounded), the voltage is somewhere near zero. DTC P0696 is set when the PCM senses that the voltage remains high when the cooling fan 3 is commanded on.

p0696 diagnostic trouble code symptoms

Symptoms of a P0696 code may include: Engine overheating Check engine light on The possibility of the engine overheating due to non-operational cooling fans is very probable so caution should be used if driving the vehicle when the conditions to set this DTC are present. It should be repaired as soon as possible.

DTC p0696 - possible causes

Potential causes for this code to set are: Faulty cooling fan 3 relay Blown cooling fan 3 fuse Faulty PCM (rarely)

How to fix OBD-II diagnostic trouble code p0696

In my experience a faulty cooling fan relay is the most common cause of this DTC. A simple way of checking the relay is locate it and visually check for other relays that are identical to it, and then switch the two relays. Clear the codes and run the vehicle. If the code does not return then replace the relay. If it does return then suspect a possible PCM issue. Note: Be absolutely sure that the relay you are switching is identical in every way. Installing the incorrect relay could do damage to the PCM. Nissan in particular has relays the appear to be the same other than color and will plug into the same socket but are different and will damage the PCM

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