Oxygen Sensor "Clean Air Reference"...
On a 1996 Olds Ciera SL, the second oxygen sensor downstream of the catalytic converter is a heated oxygen sensor. The circuit description in the service manual states the following: "If the oxygen sensor pigtail wiring, connector or terminal are damaged, the entire oxygen sensor assembly must be replaced. DO NOT attempt to repair the wiring, connector or terminals. In order for the sensor to function properly, it must have a clean air reference provided to it. This clean air reference is obtained by way of the oxygen sensor wires(s)."
Years ago I discovered a hunk of crap connector with corroded terminals on this car and soldered on a new connector and rubber taped the beast into virtual hermetically sealed condition. It worked fine for years afterwards.
Can anyone tell me how the wires produce a "clean air reference"? I presume this refers to the leads from the oxygen sensor connector to the sensor itself and has nothing to do with the car side wiring.