Why Is The Check Engine Light On?

As a driver, it's important to stay prepared for what can go wrong with your vehicle. The coolant can leak, the transmission could fail, or a tire can go flat. Mechanical issues can happen when we least expect them to. If the check engine light comes on, it can leave you completely confused because it can be alerting you to a variety of issues. You know you should check the engine, but you aren't sure why. The check engine light never comes on by mistake; below are five reasons your check engine light may have come on.

Engine Overheating

If the check engine light has come on due to your engine overheating, you will also notice additional symptoms such as a high-temperature reading and white smoke. The engine overheating can be dangerous and can cause severe damage to your vehicle. If your car is overheating, pull over immediately and allow your vehicle to cool down. If letting your car cool doesn't help, you should seek professional assistance right away.

Bad Spark Plugs

Spark plugs, true to their name, send an electrical spark to combust the engine. As your vehicle tacks on miles, the spark plugs will start to get worn and corroded. Spark plugs that pass their lifespan will begin to misfire or fail to fire altogether. If the spark plugs misfire, the check engine light will alert you, and they'll need to be replaced.

Bad Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter takes all of the harmful gases, such as carbon monoxide, and converts them into a less toxic substance. The spark plugs, oxygen sensors, and other components work together to complete this process. If any of those aspects fail, the catalytic converter will also fail. This will eventually cause the check engine light to illuminate.

Oxygen Sensor

The oxygen sensor is a vital piece of equipment that monitors the amount of unburned oxygen that comes from your vehicle's exhaust. The oxygen sensor monitors fuel consumption, and if one of its sensors goes out, the check engine light will immediately illuminate. Depending on your vehicle, you may have one or two oxygen sensors. It only takes one of them to go out for your fuel efficiency to decrease drastically. If neglected, it can cause issues with other components leading to costly repairs.

Loose Gas Cap

The gas cap ensures proper pressure is maintained in the gas tank. If you left the gas cap loose at your last gas station trip, the check engine light might come on. It's also essential to make sure the gas came isn't broken; it may need to be replaced altogether.

If your check engine light has come on, Import Auto Repair is here to help.

Click here to schedule an appointment or give us a call at 770-212-9725.

Written by Import Auto Repair