Question: Should I worry if my check engine light comes on?

What is the most common reason for check engine light?

Replacing a faulty oxygen sensor — a sensor used to optimize a vehicle’s fuel-to-air mixture to increase gas mileage and reduce emissions — is the most common cause for a check engine light.

When should I be worried about check engine light?

Both a solid and flashing engine check light indicates that a problem has been detected. However, a flashing engine check light indicates that it is a serious problem that requires your immediate attention. If you see a flashing light, it’s best to contact a mechanic as soon as possible to prevent serious damage.

Is it OK to drive with check engine light on?

The rule of thumb is that if the check engine light is flashing, you can’t keep driving the car. It’s an emergency. Often it indicates an engine misfire. If you keep driving, you will likely cause irreversible damage, mostly to the (expensive) catalytic converter.

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How long can I drive my car with check engine light on?

When the check engine light is solid, you can typically drive the car for hundreds of miles without an issue. Of course, that depends on which code is stored in the vehicle’s computer. If an engine sensor is faulty, the car will usually use made up sensor values to keep running.

Why is my engine light on but nothing seems wrong?

Do a brake and steering check. If nothing seems to be acting strange, then it is probably safe to drive it until you can get it into a mechanic. Sometimes the light may come on after fueling if the gas cap is a little loose. Or it could mean your catalytic converter needs to be inspected.

What does a solid check engine light mean?

A solid Check Engine Light can mean something like a loose gas cap, or it can indicate a more in-depth problem like a fuel, timing, or transmission issue. Get your car diagnosed, although the urgency isn’t the same as if the light was flashing at you.

How much does it cost to get your check engine light checked?

The average cost for check engine light diagnosis & testing is between $88 and $144. Labor costs are estimated between $88 and $144. This range does not include taxes and fees, and does not factor in your specific vehicle or unique location. Related repairs may also be needed.

How much does it cost to get check engine light fixed?

The costs to fix whatever’s ailing your car — and causing the light to come on — can vary greatly. Repair costs for the most common check engine light problems range from under $20 to almost $1,200, according to CarMD’s analysis of millions of repairs recommended in 2016 in the U.S.

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How much does it cost to diagnose check engine light?

On average, the fee to have an auto mechanic diagnose a check engine light is $100.

What happens if the engine light comes on?

When your car’s check engine light illuminates on your dashboard, it’s usually accompanied by a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach. The light could be a minor issue, such as a faulty gas cap, or it could mean something more serious, such as a misfiring engine.

How do I reset my check engine light?

The on-off method is the equivalent fix for a vehicle’s check engine light. It forces the computer to refresh its saved state through a reboot. Simply place your key into the ignition and turn it on for 1-2 seconds, then turn it off for 1-2 seconds. Repeat this step three or four times.