Engine Light On
What to do During Engine Light On Situations
Having an engine light on situation can become a regular recurring thing for many car owners. It can occur when a recurring issue or an unresolved problem lingers or isn’t addressed. When the lights go off on the dash panel, it may not mean that there’s something seriously wrong with the car’s engine but it does mean that something is wrong and will need attention. It can also mean that the warning system is failing, an emissions component has misfired, or a fuel module has a problem.
Specific Engine Light On Triggers
As stated earlier, a lot of things can trigger the warning light. One of the common triggers is a failing sensor. Today’s computerized cars are equipped with sensors to help mechanics diagnose potential issues of the vehicle in question. There are oxygen sensors, coolant temperature, MAP sensors, and sensors on the airflow meter.
Remember that these car sensors will deteriorate over time. They may have been built to last but there are times when they may have deteriorated to a point that they trigger an engine light on issue when there really isn’t a problem to begin with. The most common culprit will be the oxygen sensor, which is a pretty common problem with many cars today.
The deterioration of the oxygen sensor will be gradual so many drivers usually do not observe any reduction in the car’s performance. As a standard practice even before getting an engine light on issue, the oxygen sensor should be replaced or at least inspected every 50,000 to 80,000 kilometers. If the car is outfitted with an on board diagnostics 2 sensor then the maintenance check or replacement should be scheduled every 100,000 kilometers to 160,000 kilometers.
Other than having the engine light on status on the dashboard, there are other problems that can be caused by a degraded oxygen sensor. Fuel consumption usually increases by 10% to 15% with a degraded oxygen sensor or one that is totally worn out. This can also cause excessive car emissions if it isn’t taken cared of in time. In worse case scenarios, a failure of the catalytic timer can occur if the oxygen sensor is not repaired or replaced in time.
Some of the other things that can cause check engine light warnings include engine problems, which will require some serious attention. Faulty spark plugs and wiring can also cause the lights to flash as well as clogged fuel injectors. A cracked vacuum hose, missing gas caps, or a malfunctioning exhaust gas recirculation valve can also trigger an the engine light warning on the dashboard.
What to do When an Engine Light On Warning Flashes on the Dash
Well, the first thing to do is don’t panic. If the dashboard warning lights go on for a short time then turns off then it was just a momentary failure. Even if car owners didn’t get a chance to note the actual error code, the said code is stored in the car’s computer and should be accessed at a later time.
A steady engine light warning indicates a current issue that needs immediate attention. Be sure to bring the car to the service center or shop for immediate repairs. However, in case the warning goes on and off flickering continuously then a severe problem with the car’s engine needs to be checked.