How to Replace an Oxygen Sensor in a Wranglerby Christian Killian
If the check engine light on the dash of your Jeep is on, stop into an auto parts store and ask them to scan your Jeep for codes. Nearly all major auto parts store offer this service for free. Failure of the oxygen sensor is a common problem, but the part can be changed at home, saving you a major repair bill. The oxygen sensors are in the exhaust pipe between the engine and the catalytic converter on the Jeep Wrangler. You will need a special socket to remove the oxygen sensor, available at most auto parts stores and tool supply stores.
Lift the Jeep with a jack and support it on all four corners with a set of jack stands. The oxygen or O2 sensors are in the exhaust under the middle of the Jeep, so you will have to lift the entire Jeep to access them effectively.
Locate the two O2 sensors in the exhaust system. The first one is near the center of the transmission, and the second is between the resonator and the catalytic converter. Unplug the wiring harness connectors from both sensors by lifting the locking tab with a small flat screwdriver and pulling them from the harness.
Remove the O2 sensors, one at a time, using a oxygen sensor socket and a ratchet. Turn the sensor counter-clockwise to remove it from the exhaust. Discard the old sensor.
Install the two new sensors into the threaded sections of the exhaust where you removed the old ones from. The two sensors used by Jeep are identical, so either one is fine in each hole.
Tighten the sensors with an oxygen sensor socket and a torque wrench to 22 foot-pounds. Do not use thread locker, anti-seize or any other compound on the threads of the sensor.
Insert the wiring harness connectors on both sensors into the plugs on the wiring harness. Verify that they lock into the connector by checking the tab to see that it is engaged.
Remove the jack stands and lower the Jeep to the ground. Test run the engine and check your CEL or check engine light to ensure it has gone off.
Things You'll Need
- Jack stands
- Small flat screwdriver
- Oxygen sensor socket
- Never use any sealants or other compounds on the threads of an O2 sensor. Any compound that gets on the sensor will cause a false reading to be transmitted to the PCM and the Jeep will not run correctly.
Christian Killian has been a freelance journalist/photojournalist since 2006. After many years of working in auto parts and service positions, Killian decided to move into journalism full-time. He has been published in "1st Responder News" as well as in other trade magazines and newspapers in the last few years.