When that check engine light comes on, the panic starts to set in. “How much is this going to cost me?” is the only thought that runs through your head until you take your vehicle to a mechanic for an inspection. But while you wait for the diagnosis, there is no need to worry prematurely; not all check engine light warnings are serious. In fact, some are so minor, car owners ask themselves whether or not it’s even worth fixing. On the other hand, some are so easy to fix, you can manage it on your own, and at no cost.
If your check engine light is on, continue reading to learn why it might have illuminated and what your options are for repair.
Check Engine Light Warnings
A check engine light is also referred to as a malfunctioning indicator lamp (MIL). They are designed to detect mechanical and electrical issues within a vehicle, and then illuminate upon detection. Once your check engine light comes on, your first step is to get a diagnostic reading. You can purchase a check engine light code reader online or at your local auto supply store, however, it is better to have it done by a trained mechanic who can help you understand the issue and your options for repair.
Minor Automotive Issues
Some of the most common causes for a check engine light to illuminate are somewhat minor problems. For example, a top cause is a loose or open gas cap. Simply forgetting to close your gas cap can cause your check engine light to illuminate, so be sure to always check this first before heading to your local auto shop. Another common cause for a check engine light to come on is low tire pressure. Not all vehicle’s are designed with a malfunctioning indicator lamp that will detect this issue, but most newer models do. Simply tend to your tire as needed, and the check engine light will turn off.
Moderate to Major Automotive Issues
The check engine light is also designed to detect more serious issues with your vehicle. If the minor causes are not applicable to your situation, it could be a moderate to major automotive issue. Some of the most common moderate to major issues detected by a malfunctioning indicator lamp include:
Your vehicle needs a new oxygen (o2) sensor.
Your vehicle needs a new mass airflow sensor (MAF).
Your vehicle needs new spark plugs or plug wires.
The catalytic converter is damaged or defective.
To Repair or Not to Repair
It is important to talk to your trusted Indianapolis mechanic for advice on car care and automotive repair. If your check engine light came on due to a minor issue, you won’t need auto repair service. However, if it came on due to something more serious, the issue must be repaired or corrected in order to safety and efficiency of your vehicle. Even if you feel that your car is operating just fine, you should still have it inspected, as some problems can start small and worsen, overtime.
Need an Auto Mechanic?
Call Northeast Auto Service at 317-475-1846 for professional Indianapolis check engine light services you can trust. Our ASE certified car mechanics provide a wide range of automotive services for all make and model vehicles, foreign and domestic. Schedule a free inspection and estimate, anytime. Don’t forget to ask us about our auto repair coupons and discounts!