Why is the Check Engine Light On?

Why is the Check Engine Light On?It seems pretty wild that a little orange light can of envoke much fear in car owners. The check engine light generally indicates fairly simple problems that don't require major repair, as long as you have them taken care of before they evolve into a bigger issue. As you can see from these following common check engine light issues there isn't too much to worry about. However we will start with a problem that should come as a lesson as to why it is important to have issues diagnosed as soon as the light illuminates.

Faulty Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter is designed to transform hazardous exhaust fumes into less harmful emissions. If it is found the catalytic converter has failed it's likely due to a smaller problem that would have triggered the check engine light first. The catalytic converter uses rare metals and can be quite expensive to replace, but it usually won't fail on its own. Don't hesitate to head to the shop as soon as the check engine light glows in order to avoid expensive repairs.

Malfunctioning MAF Sensor

The mass airflow sensor measures incoming air in order to calculate how much needs to be mixed with the gas to create a proper running engine. If the sensor fails there is a good chance you will see a large drop in fuel efficiency as your vehicle may start to burn excessive gasoline. Many times the sensor only needs a cleaning and not necessarily to be replaced.

Failed O2 Sensor

The oxygen sensor works similar to the MAF sensor but at the other end of the car. It monitors the exhaust for oxygen levels, helping to dictate how much gasoline is mixed with the incoming air. A failed oxygen sensor can also result in a major decrease of fuel economy.

Loose or Broken Gas Cap

If the check engine light has come on in your car the best thing that you can hope for is a loose gas cap. If the gas cap is loose or if it has become cracked or otherwise busted it may allow gas vapors to evaporate out of the filler hose, thus triggering the light. To avoid having to take a trip to the auto repair shop for a problem that can be solved with the turn of a wrist always be sure your gas cap is nice and snug every time you leave the gas station.

The check engine light is really doing you a huge favor by giving you an opportunity to have small problems repaired before they turn into much bigger ones. For check engine light diagnostics in Cincinnati bring your vehicle to Parkway Automotive. We offer expert auto diagnostics for all makes and models. Give us a call at (513) 586-4572 to schedule professional auto repair in Cincinnati today! We look forward to getting you back on the road in a safe and reliable vehicle.

Parkway Automotive Blog

Published By MORBiZ