Why is the Check Engine Light On?


Your vehicle will inform you of problems in many ways. You may experience strange noises, notice large plumes of exhaust smoke or feel weird vibrations. Each of these sorts of things are symptoms of trouble that indicate you need to get to the auto repair shop right away. However, a more common way of figuring out that there is trouble brewing is the check engine light. While many people are scared of this little light, it should not be feared. It is giving you fair warning about what is likely a relatively small problem within your vehicle. However, if the light is ignored the problem will grow, resulting in a much bigger repair and a more expensive bill. As soon as the light comes on be sure to head to your mechanic for proper check engine light diagnostics.

Faulty Catalytic Converter

There is a reason it is important to have diagnostics done as soon as possible following the illumination of the light. If you don't that small problem will get much worse, and it could result in the failure of the catalytic converter, once of the most expensive parts of a vehicle. It can cost upwards of $1,000 to replace, but it likely isn't what trigger the light. That small problem could have been dealt with for as little as $100. Never delay getting diagnostics ran.

Bad MAF Sensor

The mass airflow sensor measures incoming air and calculates how much of it needs to be mixed with the gasoline for the proper air/fuel mixture. If it is unable to properly do so it will likely result in the burning of excessive amounts of gasoline, which will cause the light to come on.

Bad Oxygen Sensor

On the other end of the vehicle, the oxygen sensor measures oxygen in the exhaust, which also helps dictate the air/fuel mixture. Again, if the sensor malfunction it will probably result in the use of too much gas.

Malfunctioning Spark Plugs

If the spark plugs aren't firing on time, due to corrosion or dirt or other wear and tear, the engine will begin to run very rough and waste copious amounts of gas. This will quickly trigger the check engine light.

Cracked or Loose Gas Cap

It is important to ensure you tighten the gas cap every time you leave the pump, as leaving it loose could cause the light to come on because fuel vapors will evaporate through the filler hose. A broken or cracked gas cap will result in this as well.

When the check engine light comes on make an appointment with your mechanic to find out what the problem is. If you need check engine light diagnostics in Morrisville get in touch with John's Service Center. We will hook your car up to modern diagnostic equipment to ensure a fast and accurate repair. Give us a call at (215) 710-1340 to request an appointment for auto maintenance or auto repair in Morrisville today!

John's Service Center Blog

Written By Brian Corey

Published By MORBiZ