What can check engine light mean?

The check engine light — more formally known as the malfunction indicator lamp — is a signal from the car’s engine computer that something is wrong. … If the light begins flashing, however, it indicates a more serious problem, such as a misfire that can quickly overheat the catalytic converter.

What could cause the check engine light to come on?

Spark Plugs

Finally, worn spark plugs or plug wires will result in a check engine warning. Just about anything wrong with your vehicle’s ignition system will likely cause your check engine light to come on. … Stalls are another indicator of spark plug trouble.

Is it safe to drive your car with the check engine light on?

If the check engine light comes on while you’re driving, it can be unnerving. Don’t panic, though. … The check engine light means there’s a problem somewhere in your emissions system. Regardless, you’re safe to drive for now as long as the car isn’t performing strangely.

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How do I know if my check engine light is serious?

If the check engine light illuminates, it will either blink or remain constantly illuminated, depending on the problem. A blinking light, or in some cars a red light instead of a yellow or orange light, indicates a problem that needs immediate attention. Either way, you should have the vehicle checked by a mechanic.

What would a check engine light mean?

The check engine light is a signal that the onboard diagnostics system (or OBD II) has detected a malfunction in the vehicle’s emissions, ignition, fuel or exhaust systems. … All cars and light trucks have onboard diagnostics that are supposed to detect engine-related problems that affect the emissions control systems.

How long can you drive 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.

Can AutoZone check engine light?

Does AutoZone Scan Check Engine Lights? AutoZone does. If your light is on, and you are wondering why, head down to your local AutoZone where one of our store associates can help diagnose the issue through our free Fix Finder service.

What does a solid yellow 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.

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What does the Orange engine light mean?

The orange, engine-shaped icon on your car dashboard’s instrument cluster is programmed to turn on when the vehicle’s electronic brain detects something is wrong. Don’t panic if you see it — it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll need to give your next paycheck to the nearest mechanic.

Can check engine light turn itself off?

A check engine light will shut itself off if the condition that caused it is remedied. … If you then did a bunch of highway driving before changing the oil, the specs may have dropped back into the normal range, causing the light to go off.

Do I need to worry about a check engine light?

Unlike a Temperature or Oil Pressure light, a Check Engine light is usually not an urgent, “Stop right now or you may cause permanent damage!” type of situation, unless it is flashing. If the check engine light is flashing, a more severe problem has occurred.

Can low oil cause the check engine light to come on?

Low oil pressure: If your car is low on oil, it can cause your check engine light to go off. This is often shown in its own glowing light along with the check engine light on the dashboard.

Does check engine light mean oil change?

Your Car Needs an Oil Change

An illuminated check engine light is the first warning sign that your vehicle needs an oil change. It can activate because the oil is too dirty or when there’s not enough flowing throughout the engine.

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