What the OBD-II code p0141 means

Fault code P0141 – a step-by-step guide to diagnosing and fixing it

The meaning of error code P0141 – O2 Sensor Heater Circuit Malfunction (Bank 1, Sensor 2)
P0141
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P0141: causes, symptoms and repairs

The meaning of fault code P0141

DTC P0141 indicates that there is a problem with the oxygen sensor heater circuit on cylinder bank 1, downstream of the car's catalytic converter, such as a short or open circuit. The code is triggered when the control module determines that the sensor is taking too long to reach the right operating temperature, based on the temperature of the coolant. The signal from this device is used to monitor the efficiency of the catalytic converter.

Common causes

  • Damage to the wires or connectors causing an open circuit
  • High resistance in the heating element
  • A frayed or melted cable insulation sheath, resulting in a short circuit
  • Loose or oxidised connectors causing a poor electrical connection
  • A rich air-fuel mixture, bad timing or worn piston and cylinder parts causing carbon deposits and contaminants to accumulate around the sensor
Symptoms of code P0141

  • A reduction in fuel efficiency due to an underperforming lambda probe
  • Activation of the check engine light
  • A rough idle, engine hesitation, or poor acceleration
  • An increase in carbon deposits inside the engine and catalytic converter
  • Strange smelling exhaust fumes
  • A crackling sound coming from the catalytic converter (rare)
Recommended repairs

What you’ll need:

  • An OBD2 scanner
  • A multimeter
  • Electrical contact cleaner spray

Checking and fixing the components:

  • Connect the diagnostic scanner to the vehicle via the data link connector port and check the freeze frame data from when the DTC was triggered. Analysing the data should help you to identify the root cause of the malfunction.
  • Check the power supply to the car oxygen sensor by testing the voltage. To do this, you will need to locate the device’s harness connector and follow the manufacturer’s testing instructions. This information should be specified in the vehicle’s repair manual. The voltage between the connector pins should be roughly 12V. If the voltage is too low or no voltage is detected, it may be because the wires need replacing.
  • Remove traces of corrosion and dirt from the electrical connectors to restore their conductivity and the flow of electrical current.
  • Measure the resistance of the heater circuit by connecting the multimeter. The readings should be compared to the standard values specified by the manufacturer in the repair manual. If there is an internal sensor fault, you will need to install a new component.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What does the code “P0141” mean?


It means that the heating element of the second oxygen sensor (bank 1) is not warming up quickly enough for the device to function properly. This is often due to a short or open circuit.

Can I still drive my car?


This fault is not critical and the vehicle can still run under these conditions. However, if the component fails it can lead to an increase in emissions and the engine may get stuck in an “open loop”, causing an increase in fuel consumption. Fixing the problem will help to ensure that the car engine parts is running at optimum efficiency, as well as to prevent costly repairs in the future.

How do I clear the P0141 code?


If it is the first time this DTC has appeared, try resetting it by disconnecting the negative battery terminal or using a scan tool. If it reappears, you will need to diagnose the problem and repair or replace components before erasing it from the computer’s memory archive with the scanner.

Cars the fault code P0141 is most commonly found on

Fault code P0141 - O2 Sensor Heater Circuit Malfunction (Bank 1, Sensor 2) can occur with any car but is most often found on the following cars:

  • Vauxhall: Corsa, Astra, Zafira
  • Honda: Civic, Accord, Jazz
  • Ford: Fiesta, Focus
  • Peugeot: 207, 206, 307
  • Fiat: 500, Punto
  • Renault: Clio, Megane

If you get the code P0141 on your car, make sure that the diagnostics are carried out correctly and the error is still relevant. Check for symptoms associated with the problem and explore options for resolving it.

What to do if the fault code p 0141 appears

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