Replacing an Oxygen Sensor
courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man
I took my Caravan in for service after the Service Engine Soon light came on. Was told to disconnect the battery and it would reset the computer, then if the light came back on their was probably a problem. Did it. The light went out and stayed off for a couple of weeks.
When it came back on, I took it in and was told that the oxygen sensors needed replacement. I was told at the same time that's it's no big deal and if I didn't do it right away, it might eventually effect my gas mileage. Is that true or false?
What is your scoop on this problem and how difficult is it to change the oxygen sensors? In other words, can I buy one and do myself or should this only be done by a professional?
Who ever told you that it is no big deal should be shot, hung, and burned at the stake! You see, it is the oxygen sensor that tells the computer what is happening so it can adjust the fuel parameters. I bet if you were to take your car in for an emissions test, you would fail miserably. You are polluting my world!
They are easy enough to change, all you need is a large 7/8" wrench or a special oxygen sensor socket wrench. It is also true that your fuel economy is probably a lot worse now that it was before. In addition, depending on how the sensor failed (rich or lean) you could damage other parts of the engine.
Bob, The Auto Answer Man
Have a car care question? Visit our automotive center and see if we've already answered it or a similar question.
Take the Next Step
- For more money-saving auto articles, check out The Dollar Stretcher Auto Section.
- Reduce the cost of your gasoline with a 'gas card'. Compare them now to find the best one for you.
- Are you getting the best auto insurance rate? See how much you could save with one click. Fast, free quotes, online comparisons, and instant access to ID cards!
- Before you buy or sell a vehicle, get all the facts. Edmunds.com will give you what you need to know to make a confident deal.
More Tips & Tools to Help You
Live Better...For Less
- 6 cheap, effective home security solutions
- 5 frugal ways to expand your living space
- Top 10 DIY mistakes made by home 'handymen'
- How to hire an affordable, reliable housesitter
- Helping your adult children with housing
- 10 ways to cut the cost of cleaning
- Installing bathroom in-floor heat
- Natural homemade laundry soap recipes
- How to reduce heating bills this winter
- Find the best mortgage rates in your area
- 3 ways to use a mortgage calculator
- Mortgage calculator: Calculate your payment and more
- Home equity calculator: HELOC vs. line of credit
- Should I borrow from my home equity?
- How much can additional payments save me on my mortgage?
- Who offers the most home insurance discounts?