P0496 – Meaning, Causes, Symptoms, & Fixes

Code P0496 Definition

EVAP Flow During a Non-Purge Condition

What Does P0496 Mean?

The Evaporative Emission Control (EVAP) System seals the fuel system of the vehicle in order to prevent fuel vapors from the fuel tank and fuel system from escaping into the atmosphere. This is important because fuel vapors contain a variety of hydrocarbons. Hydrocarbons form smog when they react with air and sunlight. Gasoline evaporates very quickly, so if the fuel system is open to the atmosphere a vehicle can pollute 24 hours per day without even being turned on. These uncontrolled evaporative emissions account for as much as 20% of the pollution produced by a vehicle! When trouble code P0496 is set, it means that there is an issue with the purge flow in the EVAP system.

P0496 Symptoms

There may not be any noticeable driving issues with your vehicle but your engine could be running rich which could cause internal damage to your engine. There may also be a rough start when cranking the ignition.

P0496 Causes

  • Faulty purge or vent solenoid/valve
  • Faulty EVAP/fuel pressure sensor
  • Blocked vapor canister
  • Leaking evap system hose
  • Blocked vapor canister
  • Poor electrical connections

Code P0496 Severity – Low   

Although there are no apparent driving issues with this trouble code, it should still be addressed as soon as possible so that there may be no further internal damage to the engine.

Code P0496 Common Diagnosis Mistakes

Many mechanics may replace the EVAP canister whenever there may be a perfectly fine EVAP canister. Before making any repairs, make sure that the problem is pinpointed. There may just be a vacuum leak which could be a loose gas cap.

P0496 Diagnosis

Difficulty of Diagnosis and Repair – (3-6)

  1. Reset the Check Engine Light to see if the Check Engine Light returns in the future.
  2. If the code returns, grab your digital multimeter, turn off your engine, with the ignition on and seal your EVAP system using the Seal/Purge function. Using your multimeter, watch the fuel tank pressure sensor with the sealed EVAP system. If the value is higher than normal, then it may be time to replace the EVAP canister purge solenoid valve.
  3. If the purge valve checks out as good, then there may be an intermittent fuel tank pressure sensor or some internal electrical issues and you may need to take your vehicle to a mechanic.
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Comments 7

john smith

July 20, 2018

It was just my gas cap

James Price

July 27, 2018

Yes it was my purge valve solenoid sensor valve $32 bucks thank God for my FIXD tool

FIXD Marketing

July 30, 2018

Hi James!

That’s great to hear, I’m glad you’re happy with your FIXD sensor! Don’t forget to come back to the FIXD blog for any additional information about your Diagnostic Trouble Codes.

The FIXD Team

David Carey

September 9, 2018

Hi James
Was the purge solenoid senser valve difficult
To repair, and where is it located

Alisha P

October 19, 2018

Easy! YouTube it. I did. Mines 25 bucks… 3 clips and top of engine towards the back on my chevy cruze

James Reid

September 24, 2018

Checked purge solenoid,, was not the problem. Replaced with new solenoid and nothing changed,,, Could old solenoid have issue although testing it was same as new solenoid?
Sending car to shop to have checked.


October 19, 2018

Its easy normally as the top of the engine. YouTube it. I did in my Cruze.. 3 clips. Fixing it tomo for 25 bucks!