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All About Oxygen Sensors

Oxygen sensors have been used in automobiles for more than 30 years. The name originated and progressed from single wire non-heated oxygen sensors, to heated oxygen sensors, and wide band oxygen sensors. Proper oxygen sensor usages is very important for fuel economy, engine performance, and vehicle emissions.

The switching oxygen senor (02s) acts like a battery when it gets hot, it is able to generate its own low voltage signal that is sent to the engine control module ( ecm ) to monitor the quality of oxygen in the exhaust. The electronically heated oxygen sensor ( ho2s ) is used to reduce the amount of time it takes for the sending element to become hot and fully active. This allows the fuel control system to reduce emissions location of oxygen sensors most automobiles have at least one oxygen sensor, and many have more than one.

The oxygen sensor is located on the exhaust system before the catalytic converter; in vehicles with more than one sensor, another sensor is mounted after the converter. Worn out oxygen sensors sensors eventually wear out and lose their ability to properly create a current. As a sensor ages, contaminants in the exhaust gases can accumulate on the oxygen sensor’s surface. This interferes with the sesnor’s ability to react to changes in the oxygen levels present in the exhaust gases. The end result is the sesnor becoming slow to respond to changes in oxygen levels, which causes vehicle’s performance to degrade and the exhaust emissions to increase, not to mention a decrease in fuel mileage in automobiles.