Maintenance Useful tips

Car Oxygen Sensor Troubleshooting Tips

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When you notice the check engine light come on, there’s no need to stress as its probably a problem with the oxygen sensors of your vehicle. You’re probably surprised, but yes we are referring to oxygen sensors of a vehicle. This device is more of a mystery to vehicle owners, but it is the most common reason for activation of the check engine light. Until a few years ago, a loose gas cap was the reason for the check engine light coming on. With recent innovations such as capless gas tanks and drivers educated on fixing the problem themselves, you don’t hear of loose gas tanks a lot. Good news is that changing your cars oxygen sensor is not an expensive repair job, and will also help you save on gas costs.

It is hard to tell if you have a faulty oxygen sensor, but one of indictors is your vehicles recent petrol consumption and the engine failing to start regularly. this problem may cause a major setback in petrol consumption as much as burning 50% more petrol than your car is supposed to. Manufactured in the early 1980’s, your vehicles oxygen sensor is a significant component of an emission system , and is the similar size of a spark plug. It is placed in the exhaust stream of the car and it determines the level of air in the exhaust. This helps the engine to use only the fuel needed for the engine to run at efficient levels.

Oxygen sensors in older vehicles tend to have a higher level of failure than newer vehicles for many reasons. one of the most significant reasons is the oil is dirtier in older engines than newer ones and they have used for longer periods. In newer vehicles, car experts claim that cars oxygen sensors should last up to 150,000 Kilometers and this only in good driving conditions. In most cases, when a vehicle owner notices the car engine light come on especially when the car is still under warranty, the first they do is rush to an authorized car dealership. This is a good practice as you are covered and should always leave it to the experts, but if you’re a budgeted driver, then you may want to fix the problem yourself.

In order to diagnose car oxygen sensor problems, you will need an engine code reader and some sort of skill level to comprehend its readings. Modern vehicles are fitted with more than two and less than four oxygen sensors. For example, most V6 engines will have one oxygen sensor in each exhaust fold and one located after the catalytic converter. Although these sensors are fairly easy to locate, the tough part is getting to them especially for beginners. Moreover, since the oxygen sensors are subject to direct heat from the exhaust, they may freeze, making them harder to remove. it is much easier to remove new oxygen sensors as they come with anti-freeze compound that should be applied to the threads carefully without touching the sensors.

It is important to note that even if the code reader indicates that the problem is faulty oxygen sensors, there may be other problems that may trigger the same code. The first thing to do is check under the hood for any disconnected wires or hoses. There may some wires that are connected to the oxygen sensors that may have been damaged and may trigger the engine light to come on. If everything is okay with the wires, then it is time to take your vehicle into a reputable garage. Fact is that many car owners simply ignore the car engine light, but the paragraphs above prove why that may be a very bad practice.

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