Let’s be honest: No one celebrates their check engine light flashing on. While this typically means there’s something going on with your vehicle, ignoring this warning light can lead to bigger, more expensive, and preventable issues. These are five known issues that can cause your check engine light to come on.
Fuel Cap is Loose
Your fuel cap not only prevents gas fumes from leaving your fuel tank, but it also maintains the correct amount of pressure for the fuel system. If you realize the light has come on after you’ve filled up, pull in somewhere safe to ensure the cap is tightly secured.
Your oxygen sensor handles the proper mixture of air and fuel sent to the cylinders. A faulty oxygen sensor will burn more fuel and, if left unchecked, can damage other components in the engine, like the spark plugs and catalytic converter. Your mass airflow sensor (MAS) works with your oxygen sensor by tracking how much air goes into the engine, especially if you live or drive through different altitudes. Find your vehicle is stalling, or there’s a significant gas mileage reduction? It may be your MAS.
Catalytic Converter Failure
Speaking of the catalytic converter, this part of your exhaust system converts the carbon monoxide from the combustion process in your engine to carbon dioxide. If it gets clogged, you can hear weird sounds or see different colored smoke from your exhaust system.
Exhaust Gas Recirculation Valve
The exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system works to decrease the amount of nitrogen oxide leaving your vehicle. By redirecting the gas back into the combustion chamber, it not only reduces the emissions of your exhaust system but also makes the fuel in your vehicle burn better and more efficiently.
Spark Plug Issues
While the spark plugs can become damaged due to the faulty oxygen sensor, it can also cause issues on its own. If your plugs are worn out or bad, or the associated coils are damaged, you may hear an engine misfire or feel hesitation when you hit the gas. They can also cause your vehicle to shut off unexpectedly, too! The wires that transfer the electricity between the coil and the plug can cause issues when they go bad.
Addressing these issues isn’t for all vehicle owners. The knowledgeable and experienced staff at London’s Automotive Repair can help! From diagnosis to estimates to repair, we are ready to get you back on the road safely and quickly. Contact our office in Corvallis, OR, for your first appointment today!