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Oxygen sensor 1 in Bank 2 measures the content of exhaust pressure waves produced by engine operation and transmits rich or lean mixture voltage to the ECM. If the oxygen sensor signal or ECM do not receive valid input within a set window of time, this can set the P0153 trouble code on the drive computer of a car or truck. If you would like to try to fix the problem yourself and bypass the mechanic, your first question may be “how do I fix trouble code P0153?” Here are the most common reasons this error code is set and the best known fixes to clear this code.

What Could Cause an OBD-II Scanner Error Code P0153 Problem?

On-Board Diagnostic testing with a scanner compatible with the OBD-II system may return code P0153 or other codes related to any available readings of the lean or rich condition of the engine. More often than not, a malfunction in the first oxygen sensor in Bank 2 sets a P0153 trouble code. For some reason, this sensor is not adjusting the ratio of air to fuel issuing from the engine at the normal use rate.

Depending on the condition of the oxygen sensor and its wiring, it may be functioning too slowly to confirm a proper ratio of oxygen and fuel is present in the engine. Check to make sure that sensor wiring is not damaged or disconnected. Automotive electricians can test the frequency and amplitude of the sensor. A do-it-yourself should at least make sure the sensor assembly is not blocked and has not deteriorated. Replacing or rewiring an oxygen sensor is more straightforward than finding and fixing an exhaust leak.

It may be necessary to replace the first oxygen sensor in Bank 2, which is downstream of the engine but upstream of the catalytic converter, or even the mass air flow sensor. If an oxygen sensor is functional but responds slowly enough to trigger trouble code P0153, look out for an exhaust or inlet air leak. Perform another follow-up diagnostic scan at the nearest AutoZone store location to confirm that this and any related trouble codes are cleared.

What Does the Code P0153 Mean?

OBD-II codes are alphanumeric strings generated by the software inside the ECM in equipped car and truck models. The initial letter indicates the system that is experiencing a problem. In this case, the letter ‘P’ indicates that this is a generic powertrain code. The numbers that follow clarify that the ECM has detected delayed operation of the oxygen sensor situated directly downstream from the engine and upstream from the catalytic converter on Bank 2.

Depending on conditions in the engine and whether the sensor is functioning at all, other generic powertrain codes may coincide with P0153. If too little oxygen is present, the engine or system may run too rich, triggering error codes such as P0172, Engine Too Rich (Bank 1), or P0175, Engine Too Rich (Bank 2). The engine or system may also run too lean and return codes such as P0171, System Too Lean (Bank 1) or P0174 System Too Lean (Bank 2).

Where Can I Run Further OBD-II Diagnostics?

Many automotive-related locations have OBD-II diagnostic scanning equipment on site. Mechanics use this technology every day to pinpoint problems on vehicles. While it is possible to purchase a scanner for a home garage, you can also come to AutoZone for a detailed Fix Finder report. The more accurate and helpful information you can obtain about oxygen sensor and other related engine and exhaust system problems, the easier it may be to get the right parts, clear trouble codes and turn off any malfunction indicator lights.

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