Nissan Oxygen Sensors

Written by Jeremy Horelick
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Nissan oxygen sensors compare the air inside your car or truck's engine with the air on the outside. With this information in hand, the sensor can then make its "recommendation" to the vehicle's onboard computer. There are a couple of factors, however, that can obscure this feedback loop of information.

Not only can road dirt and oil and coolant discharges prevent your Nissan's sensor from taking accurate readings, but so can sound insulation as well. Moreover, gasket sealer, a common home remedy used by do-it-yourselfers, can contaminate sensing surfaces and throw off voltage emissions. A miscalibrated oxygen sensor in your Nissan can have other disastrous effects as well; in particular, it can cause your catalytic converter to run "hot" and melt its substrates, creating blockage instead of cleaner exhaust.

A Word of Caution about Nissan Oxygen Sensors

As your car is first warming, the channel between your Nissan's sensor and your car's computer is closed. Typically, sensors must reach a temperature of several hundred degrees Fahrenheit before they begin to emit voltages that indicate lean and rich mixtures. Until that critical temperature has been reached, though, your Nissan's computer will indicate a voltage value of .45, which is defined as an "illegal" reading (figures fall on one side or the other of this mid-point value).

Your Nissan's manufacturers have programed your car to understand that this illegal value indicates an oxygen sensor that is not yet sufficiently warm. While the car "understands" this, it nevertheless continues to gather other critical information from its other sensors, at least until the oxygen sensor is ready. At that point, it integrates all this information and begins taking its readings afresh.


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