A Check Engine Light Warning and Black Exhaust Point to the Oxygen Sensor

Your European automobile is a fantastic piece of machinery. European Fix loves everything about all European makes and models. This is why we specialize in servicing and repairing them. The oxygen (O2) sensor in the tailpipe has a lifespan of about 90,000 miles. Some sensors last longer and others die more quickly. If your check engine light comes on in you see black exhaust smoke flowing out of the tailpipe, it could be the oxygen sensor. Here are signs you have a faulty O2 sensor.

Check Engine Warning

Let’s start with the check engine light. Did you know that a malfunctioning oxygen sensor is one of the most common reasons why a check engine light turns on? This sensor communicates with your vehicle’s main computer chip, and when it malfunctions, it sends an error code. It is this error code that causes the computer to turn on the check engine warning light.

Black Exhaust Smoke

The reason why black exhaust smoke might accompany the check engine light is that the main computer chip has also increased the amount of fuel in the combustion chamber because the faulty oxygen sensor sends incorrect oxygen readings. When your engine burns away this excess fuel, it not only creates excess combustion but also black exhaust smoke.

Engine Performance Issues

This can also cause engine performance issues such as surging or stuttering. The latter is more likely attributed to too much air in the engine, however. You may also notice that your European automobile surges or stutters when you press down on the accelerator. This is an indication that there is a problem with the mixture of fuel and air in the combustion chamber.

Fuel Efficiency Loss

A surging or sputtering engine is not running efficiently and, consequently, your European automobile will lose some of its fuel efficiency. It’s hard to believe that an oxygen sensor can wreak such havoc on your automobile, but when it malfunctions, it can.

High Emissions Levels

The oxygen sensor can also affect your emissions levels. If you live in a state that has emissions testing, you may end up failing the test if your O2 sensor is bad. This is because there are excess hydrocarbons in the vehicle’s exhaust because the engine is burning away too much fuel.

Rotten Egg Odors

This excess fuel can also clog your catalytic converter and leave you with a smell of rotten eggs coming from the engine and in the exhaust. It’s important to replace the oxygen sensor before the catalytic converter is damaged beyond repair.

We can do that for you here at European Fix in Clinton Township, MI. Call us today to set up a service appointment.

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