The lambda sensor, also known as the oxygen sensor or O2 sensor, made its debut in the 1970s. It was introduced to gasoline vehicles in Europe in 1993 in response to the EURO 1 standard (Standard for the Emission of Air Pollutants). This sensor continuously measures the amount of oxygen in exhaust gases in order to adjust the air/fuel mixture.
There are two types of lambda sensors: the sensor that gets heated (by exhaust gases) and the heating sensor. The lambda sensor has an operating threshold of between 300°C and 600°C; its heating sensor allows it to reach operating temperature at a faster rate.
It is installed in front of the catalytic converter; however, you may find one behind the catalytic converter as well. The latter makes sure the front one is functioning properly.
Once the engine has reached the right temperature, the sensor measures the amount of oxygen present in the exhaust gases and sends this information to the computer which then adjusts the air/fuel mixture to optimize it.
Problems that arise
A lambda sensor usually lasts for approximately 93,000 miles; however, the older it gets, the slower it transmits information to the computer which ends up running at a lower operating mode; this, in turn, causes an increased and muddled air/fuel mixture to pass through the catalytic converter.
- Engine light on
- Fuel consumption increase
- Precarious slow motion
- Loss of performance
- Vehicle does not pass inspection
The best solution
Regular descaling allows you to optimize your lambda sensor’s functioning: Hydrogen cleaning keeps your sensor from getting old and allows it to function optimally for a longer period of time.