An on-board diagnostic or OBD-II code is set by the vehicle’s primary computer when it detects a potential problem in one or more vehicle systems. After retrieving the logged code with a scan tool, the next step is determining what it means. If your vehicle has a stored P013C code, this article is for you. Learn more about the code’s triggers and symptoms in this short but informative guide.
What Does the P013C Code Mean?
Diagnostic trouble code (DTC) P013C stands for “O2 Sensor Slow Response – Rich to Lean (Bank 2 Sensor 2).” It is set when the powertrain control module (PCM) detects that the bank 2 downstream oxygen (O2) sensor is taking longer than expected to switch from rich (a higher output voltage) to lean (a lower output voltage).
“Bank 2” in this code refers to the side of the engine that does not contain cylinder #1. “Sensor 2” refers to the downstream oxygen sensor located after the catalytic converter.
The downstream oxygen sensor is used to monitor the efficiency of the catalytic converter. It also measures the amount of oxygen present in the exhaust. An exhaust stream that is in lean condition has more oxygen present in it, which prompts the oxygen sensor to send a low signal. However, if the exhaust stream is in rich condition and there is less oxygen in it, the voltage signal increases.
If the oxygen sensor’s voltage signal does not fluctuate from rich to lean as expected, the PCM sets code P013C. It will also set the error code if it perceives the O2 sensor to be too slow to respond or deems it unresponsive.
Depending on the severity, other DTCs may also be logged. Some of these codes are P013A, P013B, P013D, P014C, P014D, P014E, and P014F.
Note: The definition of code P013C may be different depending on the vehicle manufacturer. Consult the appropriate repair manual or repair database for the exact code definition.
What are the Possible Causes of the P013C Code?
Here are some common triggers of the error code P013C:
- O2 sensor failure
- Exhaust leak
- Wiring issue
- Engine running too rich or too lean
- Faulty catalytic converter
- Defective PCM
What are the Common Symptoms of the P013C Code?
You may notice the following symptoms if you drive a car that has a logged P013C code:
- Active check engine light
- Reduced fuel efficiency
- Poor engine performance
- Other related DTCs may also be stored
How to Diagnose the P013C Code
Diagnosing code P013C can be a struggle because it has many possible triggers. To ensure you’re on the right path to resolving it, consult a repair manual that’s specific to your vehicle for the appropriate diagnostic steps.
Because diagnosing this DTC can be confusing, you might find it challenging to do it yourself. If you feel like your automotive skills are lacking, it would be best to let a technician handle this trouble code’s diagnosis.
How to Fix the P013C Code
The P013C trouble code may share similar triggers and symptoms with other DTCs. However, it’s unlikely for these codes to share a common fix. All cars are built differently, and repair procedures may be unique for each year, make, and model. For instance, the confirmed fixes for a code P013C on a Jeep may not work for a code P013C on a Toyota.
It would be wise to refer to your vehicle’s factory repair information before DIY-ing any repairs. Always consult a repair manual or repair database before attempting any fixes. If you aren’t confident in your automotive know-how, it may be best to bring your car to an auto shop.