You’re driving down the road and everything is going fine. You’ve got your favorite tunes playing on the stereo and not a care in the world. Then suddenly that ugly orange light pops up out of nowhere on your dashboard. It’s the check engine light and it’s staring at you like a hungry dog waiting to be fed. First you think, “maybe I can ignore it and it will just go away.” “I could always put some black tape over it, right?” Well, you could do that, but the fact is, most of the time the check engine light isn’t magically going away by itself. So now that it’s on what should you do?
Determine the Cause
The first thing you need to do is find out what it means. The check engine light could come on for several reasons. While some of them could be serious, many of them are much smaller issues. So if you see that little orange light don’t panic. It could be something simple. Here are the most common reasons your check engine light will come on.
1. Oxygen sensor – this monitors the unburned oxygen from your vehicle’s exhaust. A bad sensor doesn’t feed your computer the right info. That decreases your gas mileage. This is one of the top reasons your check engine light comes on. Most vehicles have between two and four sensors. So you need to bring your vehicle in to get the code and determine which oxygen sensor is bad.
2. Gas Cap – how important could your gas cap really be, right? It might not seem like a big deal, but if it’s broken or loose fuel vapors escape and can throw your fuel system into a funk. So start by checking your gas cap. If tightening it doesn’t clear the check engine light, and you don’t see any cracks, then bring it to our shop and we’ll find the problem.
3. Mass Airflow Sensor – this sensor tells your vehicle’s computer to add the right amount of fuel based on how much air is passing through the engine. When it goes bad, your emissions and gas mileage can suffer, and your vehicle can stall. It’s important to replace the mass airflow sensor once a year for optimal engine performance. This can be an easy part to replace on your own. But if you feel safer allowing a professional technician do it, then bring it in to Hoesly Automotive.
4. Catalytic Convertor – this part is designed to reduce exhaust gases. When it fails your gas mileage will go down with it and your car won’t accelerate any faster. Eventually your vehicle will stop running altogether. So if you think this is your problem get into a shop as soon as possible.
5. Spark Plugs and Wires – spark plugs and wires are such a small part of your vehicle, yet they play a huge role in your engine’s performance. If your plugs are old, or your wires are worn, then you could feel a jolt when you accelerate. All spark plugs wear out over time. There’s no getting around it. The only fix is to get them replaced. It’s an easy repair and usually doesn’t cost too much money or take too much time.
Know the Code
So how do you know which issue your vehicle has? These days, most cars come with computers. That makes diagnosing the problem a lot easier. All you have to do is bring your car, truck, crossover, or SUV into Hoesly Automotive and will use our scanner to get the code and interpret what it means. This will give us the exact diagnosis and help us determine what parts and repairs your vehicle needs. So leave the guesswork out. Bring your vehicle into Hoesly Automotive when your check engine light comes on.
Contact Hoesly Automotive Today
We’ll repair your vehicle and get you safely back on the road. Please call us today, or click here to schedule your appointment online. We service most makes and models with trusted and reliable service. We are your Vancouver auto repair specialists.
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