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Why Does My Check Engine Light Keep Coming On

You’re driving along and you hear a ding. You look down at your dashboard and it’s your check engine light. Everything seems fine. You don’t notice anything different about your car, truck, or SUV. Should you pull over? Yes; at least for a quick visual check. Then, bring your automobile into J&S Auto Repair for a diagnostic check. This will tell us why the light came on and what we need to do to fix it.

Pullover to Safety

Pullover to a safe space such as parking lot and visually inspect your car. Check to make sure your gas cap is on tight and look under the hood for any smoke. If you don’t see, smell, or hear anything out of the ordinary, and if your gauges all read normal, drive your vehicle to an automotive service shop. If your gas cap is loose, tighten it because a loose gas cap will set off a check engine light.

Tightening the Gas Cap Didn’t Work

If tightening the gas cap doesn’t work and your check engine light remains on, the cap itself may be worn and cannot seal properly or it isn’t the gas cap at all. Your check engine light will come if there is anything wrong with a system that doesn’t have a light. For example, your check engine light will alert you if any of the following parts are not functioning as they should be:

  • Catalytic converter
  • Mass airflow sensor
  • Oxygen sensor
  • Spark plugs
  • Spark plug wires

These parts are found in your vehicle’s exhaust system and ignition system. They don’t have a dashboard warning light to themselves like your brake system or radiator does. The only option your automobile’s onboard computer has to let you know something is wrong with any of these parts is to turn on your check engine light, and the light should be taken seriously.

Because some of these parts are expensive, such as the catalytic converter, you want to address the issue sooner rather than later to avoid damaging the part further. We can’t guarantee that the part won’t need to be replaced anyway, but the longer you run your vehicle with a failing part the more engine damage you cause, so avoid that added expense.

J&S Auto Repair would be happy to investigate and repair the cause of your check engine light warning. We’re located in Warwick, RI, and you can call us at 401-889-4917.

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