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Chrysler Crossfire:
Emission control system


Useful information about Chrysler Crossfire and how to repair it

  1. Engine's MIL lamp lights up, fix:
  2. Fuel injectors:
  3. Vacuum hose leakage:
  4. O2 sensors:

This is an information page collection of what I have found and what I have repaired on my Crossfire.

I believe this information must be useful to most cars manufactured from year 1997 to maybe 2008. And if you have a Mercedes SLK R170 with a 320 engine it's almost exact the same. V engines normally have four O2 sensors and inline engines two O2 sensors.


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Engine's MIL lamp lights up, fix:

I noticed that sometimes the engine's MIL (or CEL Check Engine Light) lamp lights up. That's a warning that there is a problem with the engine. When I read the OBD error codes it say: The fuel is lean on the bank 1 cylinders and to rich on the bank 2 cylinders.

    Error codes:

  • P2096, Catalyst trim system too lean, bank 1
  • P2099, Catalyst trim system too rich, bank 2

Bank 1 is where the cylinder no 1 is located on a V engine. On a Mercedes / Chrysler engine that's on the passenger side on a left hand (not British cars) drive car.

There are a lot of things that can cause these errors. O2 sensors bad, vacuum leakage, air flow meter, temperature sensors and leaking fuel injectors. Other things as well.

The car only take about 8.5 to 10.5 Liter per 100 kilometer, so it can't be a big probleme.

Fuel trim

From an earlier data measurements I got this which show that the fuel trim values are around -10% to 0%, mean value -5%. Maybe one indication that something is wrong. The mean value should be close to 0%.

Note:
This is just an overview, you need to know a lot more to do this!

Deeper information:

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Fuel injectors:

I started to check the fuel injectors.

Chrysler Crossfire: Injector

There are six of them and they are placed at the top of the engine. First you must empty the fuel line system, you can take away the fuse to the fuel pump and then start the engine and let it run until the fuel line is empty, after that there is a valve at the end of the fuel line to let the last pressure goes down. The engine shall be cool when doing this! You see the U-clip on top of the blue fuel injector in the image above. Beware, there is high pressure fuel inside it, very dangerous, you must empty the fuel line first!

I say, you should not do this if you don't know how to handle this, it could be very dangerous and set your car and house on fire!

Chrysler Crossfire: Injector

It's very limited space here, I had to disconnect the ignition coil cables to get more space.

Chrysler Crossfire: Injector

On the top and bottom of the injector there are O-rings, if they are old they can be cracked and give vacuum leaks. I decided to replace all of them.

Chrysler Crossfire: Injector

Here is how the fuel injector looks. When you take it away, cover the holes on the engine so you don't drop anything inside it! Important is also to test if the fuel injectors close properly, otherwise they leak fuel into the intake and cause problem with the exhaust emission and poor running. I bought a test kit from Hong Kong, 10 Euro.

Chrysler Crossfire: Injector

The old O-rings, you need twelve of them. The type and size are Nitril NBR 70, 7.52 x 3.53 mm.

After one day of work all the injectors were checked and O-rings replaced. There was nothing wrong, but now I don't have to worry about old cracked O-rings, sooner or later they will cause problem.

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Vacuum hose leakage:

Next thing was to see if I can find any leakage in the vacuum system. I already noticed that there were oil leakage on the right valve cover top, if oil can get out, air can get in. Modern engines with it's emission control system are very sensitive to vacuum leaks.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Check all vacuum hoses for cracks, especially at the curved paths of the hose.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Here is the the right valve cover, I have an oil leak here. I didn't take away the whole valve cover, just the upper inspection hatch. Clean it from old sealing, it took a while to do this and it was cold outside this day.

Note:
There is no gasket here, just sealing compound.

Note:
The screws are made of aluminum, don't over tight, they will broke directly and then you have seríous problem! Here is two of the four screws taken away. You need space around the valve cover to do this, you have to taken away the two left ignition coils. Notice the EGR valve and the O2 sensor, bank1 sensor 1 (upstream).

Oil stick O-ring

Also check the O-ring at the top of the oil stick, very common problem, replace it even if it looks fine!

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Left hand side, check those hoses for vacuum leak.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Front of engine, small control vacuum hose, check those for vacuum leak.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Front of engine, small vacuum hose, check those for vacuum leak.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Back of engine, check around the air inlet for vacuum leak, especially the big 3" O-ring between manifold and knee shaped air inlet, also the screws can be loose. You don't see it here, deep down behind the intake manifold.

Chrysler Crossfire: Vacuum leak

Left hand side vacuum hoses.

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O2 sensors:

Now only the O2 sensors left that has to be replaced. There are four of them, two upstream and two downstream for each catalyst. Normally you only need to replace the upstream O2 sensors, that's where the exhaust come in from engine and it's very hot here and it give a shorter lifetime.

Old O2-sensors

Here how the old O-sensors looks. The lean one has most soot on it, strange. Maybe that show that when sensors show a lean fuel it try to compensate too much. None of them looks very old, I believe an earlier owner has already changed these ones.

Note that the threads on the right O2 sensor are damaged, a sloppy mechanic has been on the move. If it leaks here, it interferes with the emission system. Possible one of the reasons I am having MIL light up. There was no damaged on the threads on the exhaust system so the new O2 sensor fits correctly.

When buying new O2 sensor you must have one that fit your car. My Crossfire has a modern model with heater element and then it has four wires. Also the length of the cables and the socket can differ. They are not very expensive today, about 60 Euro if you buy them with mounted connector and about 25 Euro without. I have seen sometimes that there are different part numbers on the left and right O2 sensors, not sure why, maybe only the cable length.

Update:
I asked this question at the Crossfire forum and got this answer:
Left side Downstream original equipment Bosch part number 16123, / 9.4 in. Long (heated) with 4 wire connector.
Right side Downstream original equipment Bosch part number 16276, / 12.6 in. Long (heated) with 4 wire connector.

Before you buy anything, check carefully that it fits your car!

I bought two with 0.5 meters cable length and another two with very long cables without the cable socket. Now when the old ones looks ok I don't want to cut the wires, I must find new cable sockets, no one seems to sell these, maybe it wasn't so wise to by sensors without sockets.

New O2-sensor

The new O2-sensor.

If you take the car to a garage they will charged you about 500 Euro to replace them.

After this I took the car for a test ride.

Chrysler Crossfire: O2 sensor signals

Connected the OBD reader and erase the old error code. Here you can see the fuel trim reading. Earlier they was at the range -10% to 0% and that could have caused the MIL alarm. Now +/- 4% and with a mean value of 0%, good! Now the reading looks much better. If there still is some problem the MIL light will light up after about 25 km. No error yet after 32 km, I will see when I drive it longer if it still works.

Update:
Now after have driven the car a longer time I got the MIL lamp to light up, bad! But the positive is that it looks to work a bit better now. When engine is in idle running the vacuum is at highest in the intake manifold and then a vacuum leak influence the emission regulation as most. Now I see that when running the engine at higher rpm and some load the signal from down streams sensors change the voltage output, more then earlier. From that I think the post (rear) sensor are working but still a vacuum leak that disturb the whole system.

Chrysler Crossfire: O2 sensor signals

Here is a schematic drawing what happens with the signals from post O2 sensors. I think bank 2 sensor is working ok, it's just the systems is cheated by the bank 1 sensor that indirect indicate a vacuum leak. Both sensor can sometimes go the full range, 0.1 volt to 0.9 volt and that indicate that the sensors should be ok.

After have Google all the night after information what's wrong I found that there is an O-ring under the throttle body that can go bad after some years and start to leakage. That's next thing to investigate.

From the Crossfire forum I got the advice to check the exhaust for air leaks. Our air has about 21% oxygen, the rest nitrogen. In the exhaust the levels are about 0.5 to 3%, so any extra fresh air coming into the system disturb the sensor very much.

One big problem for me to find what's wrong are that I don't have any information how the down streams sensors shall behave. Old cars didn't use down stream sensors in the regulation, but this car do. On the internet there are almost always answers of your problem, you just has to know which word you shall search with. This evening I used these words: "voltage graph downstream O2 sensor" and got very useful information.

Some of the search results:

This was very great help for me to keep on with my testing. I now see that the behavior of the downstream sensor maybe is ok, and the pulsating graph I had was just because I didn't let the catalytic converter heat up enough, it's not enough to just let the engine idle.

I also did a test with the Car Doctor app, here I found the reading of the Long Term Fuel Trim, I didn't have them on the Tourqe app. Now I see they are totally wrong, -8% and -20%. Very strange because the Short Term Trim values are around 0% in mean value. And the Long Term value should be based on these Short Term values. I have driven the car many miles and then it should have corrected it self. Now I have much more to test and still have to check the exhaust system. Coming back soon.

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