Modern vehicles are equipped with various sensors that help them run smoothly. Over time, however, these sensors can become damaged or degrade in performance, which can lead to vehicle problems.
Here are a few key vehicle sensors that may need repairs over time.
The oxygen sensor monitors the amount of oxygen in the vehicle's exhaust manifold. The engine control unit then uses this information to adjust the air-fuel mixture. Remember that engines need the right mixture of air and fuel to run efficiently.
The sensor measures the voltage difference between a reference electrode and a measuring electrode. The reference electrode is exposed to pure oxygen, while the measuring electrode is exposed to the vehicle's exhaust fumes. If there's a discrepancy between the two readings, it indicates that the air-fuel mixture is off and needs to be adjusted.
If the oxygen sensor is not working properly, it can cause the engine to run lean (too much air and not enough fuel) or rich (too much fuel and not enough air).
A lean mixture can cause the engine to run hot, leading to pre-ignition and knocking. A rich mixture can cause the vehicle to stall or have difficulty starting. In either case, it's important to have the oxygen sensor checked and repaired as needed.
These sensors can fail due to a build-up of debris or particles on the exposed electrodes. In some cases, the sensors may simply need to be cleaned to get them working again. However, if the sensor is damaged, it will need to be replaced.
Mass Air Flow Sensor
The mass air flow sensor measures the amount of air flowing into the vehicle's engine. The engine control unit then uses this information to calculate the correct amount of fuel to inject.
The sensor works by measuring the voltage difference between a hot wire and a cold wire. The hot wire is exposed to air passing through the sensor, while the cold wire is shielded from airflow. The voltage difference between the two wires is proportional to the mass of air flowing through the sensor.
A damaged MAF sensor can cause the vehicle to run lean or rich. The effects are similar to those of a damaged oxygen sensor. In addition, a MAF sensor that is not working properly can cause the vehicle to stall or have difficulty starting. Without the correct information, the engine control unit cannot inject the correct amount of fuel.
Both of these sensors are crucial for the proper functioning of your vehicle. If you suspect that either sensor is not working properly, head over to a local vehicle repair shop for a diagnosis and repairs.