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Sensors for Buick

Turn the key to start your Buick, and magic happens every time. Hundreds of components, all perfectly wired, bundled, and bolted together, roar to life to allow you to begin your journey. These components, as alive as they might seem, are not human and cant communicate with each other, and so there is the humble sensor, the device that car engine components use to "talk" to one another and to communicate information to the driver.

How many sensors are in a car engine?

The number of sensing systems in an engine typically depends on the age and price point of the car. Even newer vehicles that are less expensive will often have less sensing devices than newer, more expensive vehicles. Generally speaking though, there are anywhere between 12 and 30 sensing systems responsible for the successful operation of your car. These monitoring systems monitor everything from air flow to engine temperature to emissions and everything in between, and they are vitally important to a properly operating car.

When should monitoring systems be replaced?

Most of the status detectors in your vehicle are designed to last for the life of the vehicle. One notable exception, the oxygen sensor, can be replaced every 100,000 miles or so as part of preventive maintenance to ensure your engine continues receiving the correct fuel/oxygen mixture, resulting in better fuel economy and longer engine life. Otherwise, status detectors dont have to be replaced unless they become faulty, which they can and often do.

How will I know that a monitoring device needs replacing?

The most common way that drivers are alerted to a malfunction is through the check engine light. This light, while not very informative on its own, is the only visual indication of any number of problems with your car. That said, its vital that you dont ignore your check engine light, even if your car doesnt seem to be having any issues. Take it to a local auto parts store or mechanic to allow them to pull the codes being thrown by the onboard diagnostic system so you can get a better idea of what might need to be done.

When a fault relating to a particular component is detected, it can indicate either a malfunction of the sensing device which monitors that component or that the component itself is in need of repair or replacement. Either way, its important to get the issue resolved as soon as possible, so a small problem doesnt become a big issue by being ignored.

What are the most important sensors?

All of the monitors in your vehicle are important, but some, when left ignored, could end up costing you big bucks. The mass air flow sensor is one of these. This device detects how much air is being taken in by the engine so that it can then control the amount of fuel being mixed in the combustion chamber. If this device is faulty, your car will be getting the wrong fuel/air mixture, leading to rough idling and poor fuel economy. The engine speed or crankshaft position sensor monitors the position or rotational speed of the crankshaft. A faulty engine speed sensor will lead to a very rough-running engine and potentially cause your engine not to start altogether.