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P2213 OBD-II Trouble Code: NOx Sensor Circuit Bank 2

diagnostic check engine light

P2213 code definition

A P2213 trouble code signifies that the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) has received a voltage reading from the NOx (nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide gases) sensor circuit. Bank 2 is the engine bank that does not have to do with the number one cylinder. Other trouble codes that are related and can be stored in addition to a P2213 trouble code are P2200, P2201, P2202, P2203, P2204, P2205, P2206, P2207, P2208, P2209, P2210, P2211, P2212, P2214, P2215, P2216, P2217, P2218, P2219, P2220, P2221, P2222, P2223, P2224, and P2225 trouble codes.

What the P2213 code means

Using data received from both the upstream and downstream oxygen sensors, the PCM calculates the NOx readings for each of the vehicle's catalytic converters. When the sensor readings from each of these sensors read too close in the amount of NOx being produced or are too similar in response time, a P2213 trouble code is stored and the Check Engine light illuminates.

What causes the P2213 code?

A faulty catalytic converter is the most likely culprit behind a P2213 trouble code. Another cause are bad oxygen sensors, though a trouble code associated with the offending oxygen sensor should be stored as well. Catalytic converters don't generally malfunction in this manner, so a P2213 trouble code usually indicates a problem that contributes to the failure of the catalytic converter, including a bad mass air flow sensor, manifold air pressure sensor, fuel pressure regulator, fuel injection component, or coolant temperature sensor. In addition, excessive fuel dumped into the exhaust system, incorrect fuel usage, an ignition misfire, retarded spark timing, or contamination of the oil can cause storage of this code. Finally, any leaks from the exhaust manifold, down pipe, flex hose, or other exhaust component upstream from the catalytic converter can also appear to the PCM as a failure of the catalytic converter.

What are the symptoms of the P2213 code?

Symptoms of a P2213 trouble code run the gamut from just a code storage and Check Engine light illumination to a failure for the engine to start of stalling. A lot depends on the condition of the catalytic converter when the code is stored. A faulty oxygen sensor, or if the threshold is just low for catalytic converter efficiency, should present no issues when driving. However, it is when the catalytic converter is broken or has melted components within it that more pressing problems arise, such as lowered engine performance, hissing and hesitation when accelerating, and a no-start/stall condition.

How does a mechanic diagnose the P2213 code?

Necessary equipment a mechanic needs to diagnose a P2213 trouble code includes a OBD-II scanner, infrared temperature gun with a laser pointer, and a digital volt/ohmmeter. In addition, the mechanic needs to perform the following steps:

  • Start by inspecting the exhaust for leaks.
  • Reset the trouble code and retest the system.
  • If the trouble code returns, carefully inspect all wiring, connectors, and components for damage.
  • Reset the code and test the system by test driving the vehicle after replacing the necessary wiring, connectors, or components.
  • If the code returns, download any freeze frame data and stored trouble codes using the scanner.
  • Additionally, with the engine at a normal operating temperature, raise the vehicle on a lift for inspection of the exhaust system underneath.
  • Use a temperature gun to check the temperature of the exhaust before and after the catalytic converter. Compare what you find with the manufacturer's specifications.
  • If the catalytic converter temperature checks out, then use the scanner along with its oscilloscope to check the upstream and downstream oxygen sensors, as well as the NOx sensor operation.
  • Test the voltage of the upstream and downstream oxygen sensors, as well as the NOx sensor using the digital volt/ohmmeter.
  • After repairs are made, clear the code and retest the system.
  • If the code returns, disconnect the PCM and all related control modules to prevent damage, and check the resistance and continuity of the various circuits, comparing findings to the manufacturer's specifications.
  • If the NOx sensor and other system circuits come back as good, check the PCM for fault.
  • After making all of the necessary repairs, the mechanic should clear the code and test the system to see if it returns.

Common mistakes when diagnosing the P2213 code

Misdiagnosis happens when trouble codes that led to the malfunction of the catalytic converter are left unattended for a long period. Leaving these conditions to remain unfixed leads to bigger problems later on and will eventually cause the catalytic converter to fail. An example includes engine misfires, which can damage the platinum element of the converter and lead to failure left unfixed. Replacing oxygen sensors when there is no need to is another common mistake made by mechanics. Ultimately, this leads to added expense with the problem still remaining and the code returning.

How serious is the P2213 code?

If left unchecked, the conditions that lead to the storage of a P2213 trouble code can ultimately lead to catalytic converter failure. Subsequent symptoms can include lowered vehicle performance and a no-start or stall condition in extreme cases. As such, it is better to have this trouble code, and the conditions causing it, diagnosed early to avoid continued catalytic converter damage.

What repairs can fix the P2213 code?

Repairing a P2213 trouble code requires the mechanic to make the following repairs as they diagnose the system:

Additional comments for consideration regarding the P0100 code

Before diagnosing a P2213 trouble code, the mechanic should make sure to verify if the catalytic converters is not under a manufacturer's warranty. In addition, the mechanic should make sure to clear trouble codes as they were stored on the PCM, including repairing any oxygen sensor, fuel trim, fuel mixture, or misfire codes.

Need help with a P2213 code?

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