1998 Sable - O2 Sensor Codes

I just tried out my new Super AutoScanner -- the Actron CP9145 model -- on my 1998 Mercury Sable w/ 3.0L V-6 (U) I got the following codes:
P0156 Mod$10 1/2
O2 Sensor Circuit Malfunction (Bank 2 Sensor 2)
P0161 Mod$10 2/2 O2 Sensor Heater Circuit Malfunction (Bank 2 Sensor 2)
Okay, I've heard that on SOME cars, bank 1 is the set of O2 sensors that is on the exhaust coming the side of the engine with Cylinder 1 on it. So naturally bank 2, on those cars, would come from the side of the engine with cylinders 4, 5, and 6 on it. Does the same hold true for the 1998 Mercury Sable? The Chilton's book on that car doesn't specifically talk about which bank is which. And presumably Sensor 2 is the one after the catalytic converter.
I'm hoping to try to fix a clattering/chattering/knocking/pinging noise (what's the difference, anyway?) under moderate acceleration, or maintaining speed up a hill or bridge. But I've read that the oxygen sensor behind the catalytic converter doesn't affect the fuel/air ratio; it only reports back to the computer how efficiently everything is working. So while replacing the sensor might allow my "service engine soon" light to remain unlighted, it probably won't help the clattering or fuel efficiency.
The car has 120,500 miles on it and I just replace the plugs and wires about 2,000 miles ago.
Oh, speaking of clattering, one mechanic suggested that with the number of miles on the engine, I should switch from the manufacturer's recommended 5W30 to 10W40. He said the oil was awfully thin. I use Mobil 1 5W30 Synthetic now. I didn't actually see 10W40 in that brand, but I did see 20W50, IIRC.
Any comments, suggestions, or tips on this one?
Thanks, Damaeus
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--------------------------- Are you talking about pinging? It sounds like a rattle. If it happens at take-off and under a light to moderate load on the highway try this: Clean the mass air flow sensor(carefully, they are expensive) . Use something that isnt too corosive like brake cleaner or electrical cleaner. The sensor is in the intake tube between the air filter and engine. It has an electrical plug on it, it is a large as the intake tube. remove it from the tube and look inside. Hopefully you will be able to see the thermistor inside. Its a tiny thing on a wire going across the center of the big hole. You will probably see a little buildup of dirt on it. Spray it with cleaner untill its clean. If you have to rub it with a q-tip or something ok, but be careful! Put it back on the car and injoy the new-car performance.(without pinging). The 2-2 O2 is behind the cat, it just monitors the cats performance. Dont mess with it if you arent getting a check engine light. Oh, and put a fuel filter on the car if you havent already. If you dont live in a cold climate 20/50 oil would be ok. But it really sounds like you are discribing "pinging" which the oil wont change at all. It is usually caused by a lean fuel mixture. Thats what we are trying to fix with the MAF cleaning and fuel filter. GL
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In posted on Fri, 17 Oct 2003 19:21:03 GMT:

There was no buildup on it, but I squirted it with electrical cleaner anyway. I gave it a few good blasts, but the car still clatters like crazy under the conditions I originally mentioned.

Okay, I'll play with the fuel filter soon. Maybe it's a little clogged or something. I'll also try some fuel injector cleaner when I fill up again. Never can tell... maybe it'll help something.
Damaeus
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posted on Fri, 17

Clean
that
is in

plug
look
tiny
probably
clean.
it
2-2
with
on
oil
which
GL
---------Yep, a fuel filter and injector cleaner are very cheap and easy, worth a try for sure. You never know for sure if its OK till you change it. Let us know how it goes.........So is it a "rattle" sound? Mostly on slight acceleration on the highway? Do you get a check engine light?
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In posted on Tue, 21 Oct 2003 05:49:50 GMT:

It's just a classic clatter sound -- the same clatter I've heard on older cars I've owned with carbureted engines. Pre-ignition clatter. And it's on light acceleration on the highway and sometimes at even lower speed acceleration on hot days.
The check engine light is on. The two codes say it's for one of my oxygen sensors (bank 2, sensor 2), which I hear doesn't actually affect the fuel mixture.
I'm thinking about the knock sensor, but I get no engine code for that. I'm going to replace the O2 sensor hopefully by this weekend so at least the engine light will go off. Then I'll go from there.
My autoscanner has a datastream monitor. Perhaps I can learn something from that by looking at the voltages of the sensors to see if they're within specs.
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