26 Spring Street
Medfield, MA 02052

Checking Into Why the Check Engine Light is On

Checking Into Why the Check Engine Light is On

What Causes a Warning Light?

Not the check engine light! What could be causing this? Am I safe, and can I keep driving? At Randy’s Automotive in Medfield, Massachusetts, we understand the anxiousness you likely feel when the check engine indicator illuminates. Our ASE certified technicians can help you by diagnosing the problem and making necessary repairs to get you back on the road with peace of mind.

Most Common Causes

There are many issues that can cause the check engine lamp to illuminate, but the warning is often triggered by a few commonly reported issues. The oxygen sensor, a frequent culprit, measures the amount of unburned oxygen in your vehicle’s exhaust. When it malfunctions, your car will not run at optimal efficiency and will burn more fuel, causing the dashboard warning. If you do not replace a bad oxygen sensor in a timely manner, you may incur damage to your car’s spark plugs and catalytic converter. Also, a sometimes surprising problem may be a poorly fitting gas cap. The fuel system cannot seal properly if the cap is damaged or loose, causing the warning signal as well as allowing your expensive fuel to evaporate or leak. If the catalytic converter, the component that converts carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide, malfunctions, the warning is triggered. Catalytic converter failure can cause a decrease in gas mileage, poor engine performance, and an increase in the vehicle’s running temperature. Also, the mass airflow sensor (MAS) can be a problem, causing the light to come on. The MAS measures the amount of air entering the engine, allowing your car to determine the amount of fuel needed for your engine to perform at its best. When ignored, this problem keeps your vehicle from performing well and getting good fuel mileage. Further, it can lead to oxygen sensor, spark plug, or catalytic converter damage. Another potential issue is aging spark plugs or damaged/worn spark plug wires. These are needed to ignite the fuel-air mixture inside the engine cylinders. If spark plugs and wires in poor condition are replaced, your auto’s performance and fuel economy will suffer. You could even cause damage to oxygen sensors, ignition coils, and the catalytic converter.

Your Best Repair Option

If your car is telling you to check its engine, Randy’s Automotive can assist you by identifying and correcting the problem, enabling you to avoid the problems that can come from ignoring the problem and/or having the vehicle fail its annual inspection. Our experienced technicians will connect your auto to the OBD-II reader to obtain a trouble code and then use their expertise to identify and remedy the specific problem.

Written by Randy's Automotive