How to Approach the Check Engine Light

What You Should Do

If the check engine light comes in your vehicle, it can be a stressful moment. Questions and doubt quickly fill the mind, and it can be difficult to determine what to do next. At A & J Automotive, we want to help you understand this pesky signal. Although the check engine light can be vague in nature, it does provide enough information to create a plan of action. If you ever see this warning signal in your vehicle, pay attention to these small hints! They could be the difference between a failed or functioning vehicle.

Steady or Flashing?

When the check engine light is on, first pay attention to how it’s lighted. Is it steady or flashing? This information helps you understand how to proceed.

If the light is steady, there is a minor problem within your vehicle. Although your vehicle is okay for the moment, continuing to drive it could cause additional damage. Make sure you schedule an appointment with us soon so the problem doesn’t worsen.

If the light is flashing, there’s a major problem within your vehicle. In most cases, a flashing engine light indicates a misfiring engine. This can seriously damage, or even destroy, your vehicle’s catalytic converter so it’s important to schedule a visit ASAP. If you continue to drive your vehicle, it could suffer from serious engine failure or even catch on fire!

Red or Orange?

Along with observing how the signal is lighted, also pay attention to the color. Some vehicles utilize colors to inform motorists of the severity, and it’s important you understand how to proceed. If you see the light is lit with a yellow/orange color your vehicle is fine for the time being, but we recommend service at your first convenience. If you see a red light, that indicates something is seriously wrong and you will need to visit our shop ASAP! These colors represent the steady and flashing engine light respectively!

Check the Gas Cap

If the light is orange and/or steady, check the gas cap, as a loose cap is a common trigger for the light. You may need to tighten or replace it, and many auto parts stores sell these cheap. Once either action is completed, drive your vehicle for a few miles and see how the light responds. If it shuts off, great! Your vehicle is engine light free! If not, then you’ll need to schedule a visit with our auto professionals to determine the cause.

Whether the light is steady or flashing, make sure you schedule a visit with A & J Automotive in Raleigh, North Carolina! Our auto professionals use the latest diagnostic and repair equipment to quickly find and fix the cause of the check engine light!

Written by A & J Automotive

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