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need some ammo for my mechanic
Posted 23 August 2005 - 01:29 PM
When I picked up the car from the service, the mechanic said that my Check Engine Light was on, and that I need a new O2 sensor. The CEL was NOT lit before I dropped off the car, 100% for sure. I had Advance Auto pull the OBDII code: P0135, O2 Sensor Heater Circuit Malfunction (Bank 1 Sensor 1).
Here's what I've done based on reading previous posts... Monitored gas mileage for about 500 miles, it is 27 mpg, pretty good. I've unplugged the battery to reset the codes, but the CEL relights as soon as the car is turned on. At highway speeds, sometimes the CEL flashes for a short periods of <10 sec.
For you all: What could the mechanic have screwed up? What can I do myself to check for errors? Is there a wiring harness or something I can check for continuity? Could cutting off the heat shields damage some nearby wiring or something? Do these sensors go bad at my mileage?
Any insight greatly appreciated... the car is overdue for inspection so I gotta fix this asap.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 01:38 PM
I'd suggest to the mechanic that they may have caused it in their work, and see if they will replace it under good will and hpefully only charge you for the part itself.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 01:57 PM
My 02 Forester had this failure (Heater element open) twice on the front O2 sensor and once on the rear one. These were 3 of the 7 times those sensors were replaced in the 62K I owned that car, and one of the many reasons I replaced it after the 60K warrenty ran out.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 02:02 PM
Is it easy to access/replace the front O2 sensor myself if I bought one? Is there a notable difference in quality among the Subaru OEM model and other brands like Bosch, AC Delco, Walker... ?
Thanks to RallyKeith
Posted 23 August 2005 - 02:31 PM
Posted 23 August 2005 - 04:08 PM
check the O2 sensor wiring from the sensor all the way up as far as you can follow it. since it is located so low and runs up the motor it is possible for the insulation to be exposed and shorting against something metal as it snakes up the back of the motor. seen this once.
who knows maybe they just forgot to plug the wiring harness back in? i know for a fact that older subaru's run just fine without any O2 sensor connected all. when dropping the exhaust it's common to forget about the O2 sensor and have it rip the wiring out when you pull the exhaust out. so i'd check that too.
let us know how they respond, situations like this let you know what kind of people you're dealing with.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 07:44 PM
at any rate, i bet he just forgot to plug it back in.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 07:58 PM
Your sensor probabaly has 3 wires, 2 for the heater and one for the signal. If you unplug the sensor and measure the 2 heater wires(on the sensor side) with an ohmeter, it should read about 6 to 12 Ohms or so. If so then your heater sensor is fine and look at the wiring for damage. My guess is as mentioned previously the sensor was just not plugged back in.
Even if it is pure coincidencal problem, since you just spent a decent chunk of change with this guy he should cut you slack on the repair.
Posted 23 August 2005 - 08:15 PM
Posted 24 August 2005 - 12:32 AM
Posted 26 August 2005 - 07:49 AM
It turns out that the mechanic must have not unplugged the front O2 sensor when he dropped the exhaust out. Richierich hit it on the head. While the mechanic re-plugged in the sensor's wiring harness after doing the job, he didn't realize that he damaged the harness. One of the wires had pulled out of the wiring harness, creating the open heater circuit fault. I just jammed that mofo back in.
A simple fix, but all of your posts really made it easy. The mechanic apologized when I told him that I fixed it myself... he offered me a free oil change... but that doesn't add up to the $200 he was certain I needed to pay to get my O2 sensor to work! I think this should have been an obvious fix for a mechanic who's worked with these cars before...
Had Advance Auto Parts clear the CEL codes, and I got the car inspected yesterday. Anyway, thanks a lot everyone- I think I oughta donate some $ to this board.
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