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Old 03-07-2017, 11:13 AM   #1
05echors
 
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P0420 Engine light

Hi guys im new to the forum picked up a 04 echo rs with 195,600km on it was driving and had engine light come on for P0420 catalyst system efficiency below threshold bank 1, tried everything from replacing both 02 sensors checked the inside of the catalytic converter and was intact, need help im not able to pass the emissions if any of you guys have encountered this problem and can help i would appreciate it thx guys
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:44 PM   #2
tmontague
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Couple things you can do. Most expensive in replace the cat converter to properly fix the issue which is likely a fouled or worn out cat.

Cheap things you can do in install a spark plug defouler in the o2 bung and then install the o2 sensor into that. This will cause the o2 sensor to not pick up the emmissions that are causing the cel.

Last option is buy a scanner that show readiness checks. The catalyst check is the last one to get check on the echo ecu. Drive around until all of the checks are complete until the only one pending is the catalyst efficiency. Drive right into a shop to do e test asap. You will pass if only one check is pending as long as it hasn't completed and then triggered the cel.

I did this trick in my '02 Echo last year which had a fouled cat due to oil burning. After passing the e test with the one check still pending the cel came on 2km away from the e test garage when i was driving away.

The rest is good for 1 year from the date it was run. And you only need them Every 2 years
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Old 03-07-2017, 02:31 PM   #3
05echors
 
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Yea the spark plug defouler sounds good, i already spend lots of money on the o2 sensors and dont want to replace the cat. My question is will that make the engine light from not coming on again after the full drive cycle? also will it change my fuel economy..... and what trick did you do to pass

Last edited by 05echors; 03-07-2017 at 02:58 PM.
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Old 03-07-2017, 03:03 PM   #4
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I don't believe it will change your fuel economy much, but you may need to add 2 defoulers if the cel still comes on after only using 1. It will stop the cel from being thrown when done properly as the o2 sensor won't be able to pick up the emissions that triggers the cel.

The trick I used was using a scanner to monitor the ecu readiness checks. As soon as all of my readiness checks were complete except for the catalyst efficiency one, I went to the closest e test place and got it tested and passed. The cel came on 2km after driving away from the e Test place as the catalyst efficiency check finalised and triggered the cel.

With the method I used, the cel will not turn off after the ecu runs through its checks. With the o2 fouled method the cel will turn off of done properly.

In my case I just needed the car to pass e test to use it for another 2 years so I wasn't concerned with having a cel on the dash even though it is annoying
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Old 03-07-2017, 06:38 PM   #5
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95% of the time a P0420 is a worn out cat and nothing short of replacing it will solve the problem. You can try cleaning the inside of the cat or checking the PCV valve but that will very rarely be the issue. If you want to just pass the e test than the scanner route might be a good idea to determine how quickly the P0420 code returns and if all the emissions or drive cycle checks will be completed in that time. If you're feeling adventurous you could also try the 02 sensor hack to fool your car's ECU into thinking the cat is working fine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-upYHEQu0w
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Old 03-07-2017, 06:44 PM   #6
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There are also electronic devices you can build to simulate post cat O2 sensors, using a 555 timer. Might be a solution if pulling it out of the stream doesn't work.

Check rockauto for parts, you might be surprised at the pricing. For your 05 echo there is one as low as $231 CAD. Shipping can be pricey, though. You could have it shipped to a kinek point in Niagara Falls NY, or they will ship it to your house with the HST prepaid (so no BS UPS fees) but that could be expensive. Check the shipping on all of the converters because some of them are very expensive to ship based on region they come from. Eastern Catalytic was a good choice for the last one I bought (I still have it but it won't fit an 05 echo).

This year they got rid of the repeat conditional pass and they have gotten rid of the 1 non-ready sensor exemption, so you need to choose a permanent solution! :) And yes, you can go and get a pass up to 1 year early and it will still count. So on a suspect car, get it checked the day after your place sticker renewal!

Best of luck! The entire test is electronic now and I've never seen them put any effort into looking for any cheat devices so do whatever you must to beat the system. If you have no check engine light and a scanner says all the sensors are ready, you are guaranteed a pass. :)
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Old 03-07-2017, 07:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shepd View Post

This year they got rid of the repeat conditional pass and they have gotten rid of the 1 non-ready sensor exemption, so you need to choose a permanent solution! :) And yes, you can go and get a pass up to 1 year early and it will still count. So on a suspect car, get it checked the day after your place sticker renewal!

Best of luck! The entire test is electronic now and I've never seen them put any effort into looking for any cheat devices so do whatever you must to beat the system. If you have no check engine light and a scanner says all the sensors are ready, you are guaranteed a pass. :)
When did that change? I checked online a few months ago and you're still allowed 1 ready check to be not completed. No cel can be on but 1 not ready status is allowed. At least that is how I passed last year.

If that has in fact changed please post a link if possible as this is definitely important to know for those of us with this test!
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Old 03-07-2017, 07:25 PM   #8
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Use a good scan tool that can display live data in a realtime waveform. Compare the waveform of the upstream lambda/air-fuel sensor against the downstream oxygen sensor. A weak or temporarily poisoned catalyst will show significant waveform activity in the downstream oxygen sensor.

Even with some waveform attenuation, the downstream sensor, if the part is known to be good, should not be near the same amplitude as the upstream lambda sensor.

Temporary catalyst poisoning, if not severe, could be cleaned up by soaking the substrate in water and then running it to burn off. Doesn't always work, depending on the extent of the damage.

P0420 will have no effect on fuel economy or combustion efficiency. It is a purely passive emissions-reduction system failure DTC.

Your story of of a recurring MIL and P0420 DTC suggests, to me, that the catalyst must be replaced.
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Old 03-07-2017, 11:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmontague View Post
When did that change? I checked online a few months ago and you're still allowed 1 ready check to be not completed. No cel can be on but 1 not ready status is allowed. At least that is how I passed last year.

If that has in fact changed please post a link if possible as this is definitely important to know for those of us with this test!
Have a look here. The section on Not Ready no longer includes any exceptions, so 1 not ready should equal not ready at all now. Things changed in October for that.

https://www.ontario.ca/page/drive-clean-test

Readiness Changes

As of October 3, 2016, readiness conditional passes will no longer be issued.

You will be re-directed to a two-speed idle tailpipe test if all of the following conditions are met:

Your vehicle has received two consecutive “not ready” test results
48 hours or more have passed between each test
Your vehicle has been driven at least 40 km between the tests
Your battery has not been disconnected and the OBD codes have not been cleared in the last 40 km of driving
The number of “not ready” monitors has not increased during the second test
You do not have all of your non-continuous monitors in a state of “not ready” at the second test
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Old 03-08-2017, 12:21 AM   #10
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Interesting, thanks for the link.

However it still doesn't say that you cannot have one readiness check stated as not read. A conditional pass was not given for the above cases even 4 years ago. Your get a full pass if only one check was not ready. It was after 2 test where more than 2 checks were not ready where your get the conditional pass.

There definitely have been more changes to the rules, more ways to force consumers to buy new cars when their old ones are still fine. But I am not convinced that every single ready check has to be ok to get a full pass. It is my understanding that one check not ready is still fine.

In the winter if it is below a certain temp then one I'm the check will never change to ok (i forget which one it is) which is why they allow one to be not ready.

I'd love to hear from an e test tech to hear what they have to say regarding the changes
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Old 03-08-2017, 05:06 AM   #11
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The trigger for P0420 is that the signal from the 1st sensor is the same as the signal of the 2nd sensor thus the efficiency of the TWC is low.
Of course you have to rule out exhaust leaks and the two sensors you replaced.
Good luck eh :)
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Old 03-08-2017, 10:40 PM   #12
05echors
 
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I got it to show 5 readiness will that be ok for a pass for now? Or do I need all 6 because once the 6th one comes on the engine light comes on
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Old 03-09-2017, 12:25 AM   #13
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As far as I have been able to find out that will be good for a full pass. As long as the test is ran before the last check completes and triggers your engine light. This is where the scanner comes in handy, you'll know when to get the test done when that window of opportunity opens up when the 5th ready check just showed complete and the 6th one still is not ready.

Worst case scenario if you fail you can just just an o2 extensive/defouler and then re test and pass.

Keep us updated!
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Old 03-09-2017, 07:18 PM   #14
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I think they changed the emissions my evap has to be ready and that's the one that is failing I'm going to do the defouler way any tips on how to do them both?
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Old 03-09-2017, 08:51 PM   #15
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So you went to do the e test and failed?

A p0420 is a catalyst efficiency check fail. The evap check is separate to that. From my experience on the echo a failed evap check will trigger a cel but not a p0420, meaning you have more than one check that is causing a cel and more than one code should be been thrown.

The defouler will fix the p0420 but not an issue with your evap system.

YouTube o2 sensor defouler andbyoull find a handful of great videos showing you how to do it which will be much more helpful than me trying to explain it.

The parts you'll need are spark plug defoulers and then you drill them to fit an o2 sensor
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Old 03-10-2017, 12:49 AM   #16
05echors
 
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I just have the cat fault p0420 I herd that they all need to be ready maybe I herd wrong I'm gonna monitor it again till then gonna get the defouler set up
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Old 03-10-2017, 11:54 AM   #17
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Last year I passed with the same conditions. My evap wasn't ready but I've had problems with P0420 because of my turbo system. Then every once in a while I'll get a code for a "very small leak detected" for evap. I've changed the filler neck and gas cap with all toyota parts. I think it's boost pushing past the purge valve.
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Old 03-10-2017, 05:59 PM   #18
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I got 2 different defoulers which one is better ones slightly longer than the other and shorter one has gaskets other longer one is tapered
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