Vehicles that are launched in the past few years are equipped with an array of sensors to enhance the overall performance and ride comfort in cars. The oxygen sensor is one such part that plays the most important role in the emission-control setup of the vehicle. It is one of the earliest technologies that was followed to make other sensor systems in modern vehicles including those which can have the capacity to control the engine as well.
The Role it Plays
At the Chrysler dealer Portage, we were explained that in the latest cars, the engine control is done with the help of a computer that measures the composition ratio of the exhaust gases that is required for the process of fuel metering, delivery, and timing.
You will find the O2 sensor placed within the exhaust stream itself. The oxygen sensor is made to measure the oxygen content existent in the exhaust gases while comparing it to the oxygen proportion prevalent in the ambient air. After collecting this information on the gases it sends it to the engine computer. Most of the latest vehicles today have a heated element fo the O2 sensor to make it work when the engine is cold so that it doesn’t need to put that extra fuel into the cylinders till it reaches the required degree of temperature.
Symptoms of O2 Sensor Failure
O2 sensors do rupture with use over because of the carbon and soot deposits. Otherwise too, the element can simply erode off or wear down because of the silicone from grease or lubricants making their way to the exhaust stream. They can also become fouled if any coolant passes through the combustion chambers. If the oxygen sensor is worn out badly, it will show a lag during the time of response or can simply stop working altogether.
When the sensor sends some readings of voltage that are unusual, the computer will instantly register a code for trouble and start illuminating the Check Engine light (CEL). At this stage, a technician, however, will be able to connect a scanner to the diagnostic port of the vehicle and get access to the trouble code.
When to Know It is Time to Change the O2 Sensor
If your car is moving with poor fuel economy, showing a loss of power, and you can see black smoke exhausting from the tailpipe and your car fails in the test of emission, you can be sure to a great extent that your O2 sensor is at fault.
With a failed O2 sensor your car will also have a rough idling time and hesitate to stall.
Replacement of the O2 Sensor
The experts at the Chrysler Portage, say that replacement of the O2 sensor isn’t a difficult task whatsoever, although some models keep the O2 sensor in an inaccessible place that may require removal of other parts. Sometimes it becomes necessary to heat up the base of the sensor with the help of a heat gun or a torch in order to expand the metal part to make the procedure of removal easier.