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Old 07-09-2010, 08:50 AM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 590
My Ride: 325ci 2001
Code P0161 - info needed.

Hey guys.

I got my new diagnostic software and hardware setup and have been running round making a quick few off all my mates reading codes and doing diagnostics for them I came to do mine this evening and thinking there is no EML I would be ok.... wrong!

I have no active codes (hence no EML) but I do have a pending code; P0161.

P0161 - Oxygen O2 Sensor Circuit Low Voltage (Bank2, Sensor2)

I have done a search for this code and only a few threads have come up that hold information about it. From what I can gather this is a post cat O2 sensor? If it is does this serve any function for the vehicles fuel/air management or is it simply for monitoring the operation of the cats? If it has no effect on the operation of the car I will leave it but if it is affecting anything I will buy a new one. I have graphed the fuel for each bank whilst out driving and they seem to be pretty much identical so I don't think it is affecting anything but may as well check!

Cheers for any help,


P.S. I deleted it and after a short drive it came back.
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Old 07-09-2010, 09:45 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2008
Location: Indiana
Posts: 2,180
My Ride: 2003 330Ci
I highlighted this text in your post- P0161 - Oxygen O2 Sensor Circuit Low Voltage (Bank2, Sensor2)
and searched with Yahoo.
This link came up first - P0161 OBD-II Trouble Code

It indicates -

What does that mean?

It basically means the PCM detected either an excessive current draw, or an open or short in the circuit powering the oxygen sensor's heater circuit. This is in reference to the Heated Oxygen Sensor (2) located rear of catalytic converter (Bank 2).

There will likely be no obvious symptoms other than MIL illumination.

A code P0161 may mean that one or more of the following has happened:

* HO2S heater power circuit open
* HO2S heater ground circuit open
* HO2S signal tracking (due to oil or moisture in the connector)
* HO2S is damaged or has failed PCM has failed

Possible Solutions

* Replace HO2 Sensor
* Repair open or short in power circuit
* Repair open or short in ground circuit
* Repair damaged connector due to tracking
Discounts on new and CPO cars.
Most Dealers offer a parts discount, BMP Design 10% off
shanneba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2010, 09:55 AM   #3
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 590
My Ride: 325ci 2001
Thanks for the info! I did a google search and found a few different 'opinions' of what it could have been. I thought I would ask the BMW guys what it meant for our car

If it's a post cat sensor can I get to it easily enough if I put the car on axle stands up front? I may just check the wires at the back of the sensor and then follow it back to where the connector plug is and check that over too.

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Old 10-29-2010, 11:05 AM   #4
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Location: New York
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My Ride: 01 330ci
did you solve this?
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Old 11-06-2010, 06:47 AM   #5
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: GE
Posts: 36
My Ride: BMW 330CI
Hi Scott

Did you resolve your problem with code P0161? My car has the same problem too

Can you write solution.

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