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Old 07-05-2019, 07:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default O2 sensor helps...for about a mile

(In the Subject, I meant to type "O2 sensor extender")

Happily for me, living in New Mexico has meant that even when my 2001 Insight 5M sprouted the Check Engine light with the code pointing to the second O2 sensor...and even living (for a time) in a metro area that required emissions testing...hybrids get pass anyway. So there's never been any regulatory pressure to get this seen to.

However, I've had the oxygen sensor extension/fitting for awhile and, just today, in conjunction with getting new front rotors and pads, I had it installed.

I started the car and drove from the shop to the nearby Subway. I was very pleased to see the Check Engine light off (clearing the code had been requested). Went inside to get my sandwich, came out to restart and resume the trip home. Typical of all of the warm restart stumbles that I had experienced ever since that light first came on (reporting this code), on light throttle acceleration the car bucked once...then carried on...to the familiar glow of the Check Engine light, showing that apparently nothing has changed, no successful fooling of the computer, no cure of that stumble.

So.....do I just continue to live with it? I'm out only a few bucks.

Last edited by xqqqme; 07-05-2019 at 07:43 PM. Reason: incorrect terminology
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Old 07-05-2019, 08:21 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Contact me for a set of o2 sensors,,both shipped for 100
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Old 07-05-2019, 08:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the quick reply. There's much I don't know about all this so, bear with me here. All this time I'd been under the impression from discussions here that this Check Engine code pointing to the O2 sensor was a) common and b) easily fixed with the extension. Your reply seems to indicate that while both of those points could well be true, I might be experiencing something more complicated, involving not just the location of the 2nd sensor in relation to the exhaust stream but the two sensors themselves. Correct?
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Old 07-05-2019, 09:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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The whole reason you have the check engine light on is because there is a fault in one or both of the sensors you canít add an extension to the sensor and hope the light goes out you have to fix or diagnose the problem first start with what codes you have and go from there


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Old 07-05-2019, 09:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Well, the spacer under the #2 sensor has fixed a bunch oh them for me. I can't remember any that haven't worked. I even fixed my Miata this way the other day.

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Old 07-05-2019, 10:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default O2 sensor helps...for about a mile

Regardless of what they're called, what they do is to move the O2 sensor physically farther away from the main exhaust flow in hopes of tricking the ECU into not throwing the P0420 DTC when you A HFC, or a trackpipe. While on some cars they do actually prevent the P0420 DTC from being thrown, they cause fueling problems on all cars 2001 and newer. The ECU uses the input from the rear O2 sensor to affect fueling in addition to simply monitoring the cat (as in 2000 and older cars). If you remove the rear O2 sensor entirely, mount it somewhere that isn't in the exhaust at all (don't laugh, I've seen it done), or even just move it out of the main exhaust flow, you'll develop strange fueling errors as the ECU tries to make the rear O2 see what it's programmed to achieve. The result of this is slightly worse fuel economy, a worse idle, and generally increased difficulty in getting the car tuned or other check engine light codes


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Old 07-06-2019, 01:20 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Xspeedracer,

In your initial post you did not explain what check engine light code you had. You stated that you just had a spacer/anti-fouler installed.

If you are sure you had a P0420, about 90% of the time a spacer will help cure this code. The spacer has to be on the second sensor. You indicated you had it installed by someone else, please be sure it is on the second sensor and they didnít mistakenly install it on the first one.

The first 02 sensor effects fueling as you describe not the second sensor.

The second sensor basically monitors what is between the two sensors, the catalytic converter, not fueling.

A P0420 code is catalytic converter below efficiency.

A spacer on the second sensor moves the sensor out of the direct stream of exhaust and the code normally goes away. I know of approximately 5 cars that donít have any guts in the cars and run a spacer and have no codes and run fine.

The check engine light can read as many as maybe 100 different codes.

Please have the codes read and confirm what it currently is and please report back.

Thanks,
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Old 07-06-2019, 10:29 AM   #8 (permalink)
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The second 02 sensor bung is where I have my AF gauge mounted. The second 02 sensor is mounted in a enclosed tube under the vehicle with an O2 "Fooler" installed. No codes, excellent running, and for many many thousands of miles.

I agree with RX Scott.

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Old 07-06-2019, 11:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Scott, I'm the OP, not Xspeedracer,

Honestly, the code was pulled (and the spacer ordered) so long ago that I don't recall the exact numbers...but the advice at the time was, as you note, to simply get the spacer. I'll have the code pulled again, jot it down and report back. Yes, I'm aware that there are many possible codes that can lurk behind the Check Engine light (and also aware, via long-ago history with Honda dealer Master tech), that "90% of Check Engine alerts are initiated by a pollution control issue, even down to the misfiring of one spark plug on two successive ignitions."

Yes, I had a local mechanic do it in the course of installing new front brakes. Short of standing behind him to make sure it was added to the downstream sensor, I can't testify to that....but the instructions (and the "playback" of them) was definitely to add it to the #2 sensor location.
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Old 07-06-2019, 01:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xqqqme View Post
All this time I'd been under the impression from discussions here that this Check Engine code pointing to the O2 sensor was a) common and b) easily fixed with the extension.
Nope, it's the code pointing to the catalytic converter that is easily fixed with the extension. (O2 sensor spacer)
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