Should I drive long distance with faulty front O2 sensor?
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    1. #1
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      Thanksgiving in US is coming up and I need to drive 500 miles round trip later this week and as luck would have it, check engine light illuminated last night after replacing my rear pads.

      OBD reports P0170 and dealership indicated this morning that there is a problem with the front oxygen sensor but the part will not be available until next Tuesday.

      The service advisor said no problem making the trip. Thoughts on this? I can always just rent a car for the week.

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    3. #2
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      Why can't they give u a loaner car while the part is being ordered?

      Sent from my SM-N975U using Tapatalk

    4. #3
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      Our XC70 had a bad O2 sensor once (signal out of limits, turned out to be a wiring problem).
      The emission system "assumed" that lambda = 1 and carried on accordingly.
      If the current emission systems still follow the same logic, there is indeed no problem.
      I think that if the car runs normal, your dealer may very well be right about driving the car.
      2018 XC90 T5 (5-seater)

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    6. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by dealcatcher View Post
      Why can't they give u a loaner car while the part is being ordered?

      Sent from my SM-N975U using Tapatalk
      They are saying it's not a problem. Just wanted to get this forum's opinion.

    7. #5
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      I recently had both O2 sensors fail at the same time (somehow.)
      MPG went to crap; so that'd be what I'd worry about. I was getting 7mpg or so.
      2016 XC90 Inscription Osmium Grey on Charcoal
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    8. #6
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      I would try cleaning the MAF with the maf cleaner reset the code if possible then restart and see.

      Found this on other Volvo forum:

      Possible causes
      - Intake air leaks
      - Faulty front heated oxygen sensor
      - Ignition misfiring
      - Faulty fuel injectors
      - Exhaust gas leaks
      - Incorrect fuel pressure
      - Lack of fuel
      - Faulty Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor
      - Incorrect Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) hose connection


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    9. #7
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      MPG will drop even with just one of them being faulty . . our city dropped from 17 or so, to under 10
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    10. #8
      Junior Member drmanny3's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
      They are saying it's not a problem. Just wanted to get this forum's opinion.
      While coming to the forum for input can be helpful, I would go with what your dealer has told you. Do you trust them to work on your car? If the answer is yes then don't ask for input on a topic that most here lack expertise. If you don't trust that your dealer is telling you the truth, go to another dealer. Emission issues can be very complex to diagnose. Oxygen Sensors can and do fail.
      Last edited by drmanny3; 11-27-2019 at 10:21 AM.
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    11. #9
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      I've driven vehicles with bad O2 sensors in the past for quite some time. The biggest problem; over-fueling. The engine defaults to a state where it constantly runs rich and it takes the catalytic converter a little longer to come up to temp.
      2009 XC90 3.2 AWD l Oyster Grey / Bi-Xenon / Dynaudio / BLIS / VNS / RSE / THULE Aeroblade

    12. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by drmanny3 View Post
      Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
      They are saying it's not a problem. Just wanted to get this forum's opinion.
      While coming to the forum for input can be helpful, I would go with what your dealer has told you. Do you trust them to work on your car? If the answer is yes then don't ask for input on a topic that most here lack expertise. If you don't trust that your dealer is telling you the truth, go to another dealer. Emission issues can be very complex to diagnose. Oxygen Sensors can and do fail.
      Your advice sounds great any week but didn’t have a choice of dealership this week.

      Check engine came on Monday night. Had to leave for Thanksgiving Wednesday morning. Only one dealer had appointment Tuesday morning and I never been to this dealership. Other dealerships didn’t have any appointments until next week.

    13. #11
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      I drove with a bad O2 for over a month and didn't have any issues with performance or mpg. I didn't realize the O2 was bad or else I would have taken it in sooner but I was returning from the dealer regarding another CEL issue and thought they had just not fixed the original minor problem.

      Think you'll be fine as your service advisor said.

    14. #12
      Junior Member drmanny3's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
      Your advice sounds great any week but didn’t have a choice of dealership this week.

      Check engine came on Monday night. Had to leave for Thanksgiving Wednesday morning. Only one dealer had appointment Tuesday morning and I never been to this dealership. Other dealerships didn’t have any appointments until next week.
      I still think you can trust your dealer. They have no reason to give you faulty information.
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    15. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by drmanny3 View Post
      I still think you can trust your dealer. They have no reason to give you faulty information.
      Nothing wrong with seeking a second opinion, there are at least 2 very knowledgeable Volvo techs who monitor this forum and graciously volunteer their expertise. Doctors have no reason to provide faulty information, but patients are routinely encouraged to seek second opinions.
      Last edited by XC90TODD; 12-02-2019 at 08:12 AM.
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    16. #14
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      I don't know about this specific vehicle, but most modern cars have O2 sensors in pairs. One upstream of the Cat and one downstream. The upstream sensor is used for lambda measurements which effect the fueling of the vehicle. The downstream one typically is just a check that the Cat is up to temp and working.

      In almost every car out there, these are the same part number. So you can swap them and put the bad sensor behind the cat where it will still throw a code, but it won't mess up your MPG.

      Again, I am not familiar with this particular vehcle. It may be different, so ymmv. Literally!

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