What Does the Check Engine Light Mean

May 2nd, 2018 by

Check Engine Light

When drivers see that yellow glow on the dashboard, most recoil with fear. “What does the check engine light mean?” they wonder, “And how much will this cost?” You might be surprised to find out that the check engine light can pop on for a wide range of reasons, from ultra-serious matters to incredibly simple repairs. Before you get in a panic, find out what does it mean when the check engine light comes on with the talented technicians of Jeffrey Acura

Why Do I Have a Check Engine Light?

The engine light became a standardized feature in the 1980s to help technicians spot, diagnose, and fix issues quickly. As a part of the onboard diagnostic system, the check engine light pops on when the electronic control system finds a problem that it can’t solve by itself. Then, the vehicle records a “trouble code” that can be read by scanners at the service department of any dealership. This streamlines the diagnostic process, so your tech can find the problem faster and resolve it.

What Do I Do When I See the Check Engine Light?

If you notice your standard yellow glowing light, take note. While it’s important to schedule your service promptly, there’s no need to take drastic measures. You don’t need to pull off the road and get a tow. But, you should try to nip it in the bud as soon as possible. What if you notice a blinking light or a red light instead of the usual yellow tone? That indicates a more severe problem, usually regarding an engine misfire. If that’s the case, get to a dealership immediately.

What Can a Check Engine Light Mean?

Finally, what does it mean when the check engine light comes on? Here are a few tips to troubleshoot until you get to the shop:

  • Dashboard: Are there other lights on your dashboard, like low oil pressure or overheating? Those might help you narrow down the issue.
  • Gas Cap: Did you forget to tighten that gas cap when you took a pit stop in West Bloomfield? This can trigger the check engine light.
  • Diagnostic Codes: Many cars have built-in diagnostic services, often linked to an app. See if your vehicle has “remote diagnostic support” to get a quicker answer.

Where Can I Go for Quality Service?

Jeffrey Acura is located in Roseville, just a short stop from Troy and Farmington Hills, and we’d be happy to get your car back in fighting shape. Need more information? Find out all about extended warranties and how they can protect your vehicle from calamity.

Posted in Tips