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Problems with Oxygen Sensor?

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by AboveParLDC, Feb 22, 2003.

  1. AboveParLDC

    AboveParLDC Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    I have a 95 2500 Ram with the 360 motor. It currently has 83,000 miles on it and right now i'm on the 7th or 8th Oxygen sensor. It seems that everytime I go through any substanial amount of water or puddle, or even snow that's somewhat deep (6-10") the Oxygen sensor goes bad. I know the sensor is in a bad spot on the converter underneath but I was just wondering if anyone else was experiencing this problem I have. It's been somewhat costly, but I've become quite experienced in replacing it myself now. I just recently found out that Dodge has finally realized they're having a problem with these....so far I haven't seen what they're doing to fix it. If anyone could give their 2 cents it would be greatly appreciated. I get bad enough fuel mileage with a good oxygen sensor let alone a bad one and I don't want to spend anymore than I need to.

    Adam Davis
  2. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    An O2 sensor should not go bad that often.I'd tend to think it's more of an internal problem that is killing it.Might want to check things like fuel pressure,ingnition system,plugs etc.If it's running excessivly rich it will kill the O2 pretty quick,and could explain the bad mileage.

    Most O2 sensors should hold up being exposed to the elements and water without a problem.Maybe your using a cheap O2 sensor ?
  3. Plow Dak

    Plow Dak Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 48

    Your not putting any additives in the fuel are ya ??? Certain things will coat a sensor and render it useless.
    Seen this before...:)
  4. AboveParLDC

    AboveParLDC Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Wyldman....I would have thought the same about the internal problem too. I've changed the plugs and wires and all that other good stuff overtime, including the EGR valve (i think that's it) which went bad and melted itself. The only reason i seem to believe it's the weather elements is because as soon as I go through water or snow, it's bad as soon as I start it up next, sometimes sooner. As for the cheapness of the O2 sensor, the ones I was putting in the beginning were the Bosch sensors, then Dodge told me the Dodge vehicles don't like aftermarket sensors, so I've been putting Factory sensors in, unfortunately it hasn't changed a damn thing. I haven't added any fuel additives or used any different type of fuel, i've kept it constant all the way through. Thanks for the info but need for help.
  5. Arc Burn

    Arc Burn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,138

    Hey Wyldman,could this one possibly be a bad converter?We went thru this a while back and you set me straight on the different types but this one does have the baffle that could break loose and wreak havoc?
  6. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    Could be a plugged convertor which could overheat and damage the sensor.

    Very interesting that it seems to happen as soon as you go through water or snow.

    Have you kept the old one and maybe retry it after a while ? Maybe they will dry out and work again.Due to the extremely low voltage they work on (.1-1.0 V),they would be very sensitive to water if it managed to get in somehow.Might want to check the connector,maybe that's where the water is getting in,and shorting across the connector terminals.

    I'd also be looking at the grounding of the exhaust system.The O2 signal needs a return or ground path,and if the exhaust isn't grounding,it will look like a bad sensor.

    Have you had this on a scanner to look at the O2 sensor reading while it happens ?
  7. AboveParLDC

    AboveParLDC Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    On the Cat. Convertor possibility, I thought that may be the problem too, but I had the converter break up on me about a year ago and replaced and decided to put a new muffler on at the same time. I ended up getting a flowmaster kit and someone told me that the flowmaster could be messing with it. I just don't know how something after it could have that much of an effect on it.

    The idea about the grounding sounds possible. I'm gonna check into it next available chance I get.

    My friend hooked it up to a scanner before and that's when we found out it was the 02 sensor problem, way back when. If it happens next time I'm gonna have him hook it up while it's happening to see what's goin on inside.

    The only thing i can hope for right now is it doesn't happen again and maybe i'll stay at 7-8 mpg rather than goin to bout 3 mpg around town. If it does happen again, with in the next year, the 02 sensor is goin right back to dodge and i'm gettin my money back, and a new 02 sensor of course.
  8. wyldman

    wyldman Member
    Messages: 3,265

    I doubt he flowmaster has anything to do with it.Only time exhaust will really affect the engine operation,is if there is no backpressure.With the cat still in place and the flowmaster it will be fine.

    Be prepared if you return the O2 to Dodge that they may not warranty it.O2 sensors are easily damaged by a poor running engine,so they may be hesitant to replace it unless you can prove it was really defective and not damaged\contaminated by your vehicle.

    I still think it's a grounding problem.You will be able to see it on the scanner,and can be easily tested using booster cables.While it's acting up,clamp one of the booster clamps onto the sensor body itself,and the other end onto an engine or battery ground.If the O2 sensor readings return to normal,and the engine runs better,then you have a ground return problem.