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16
Aug

Check Engine Light Rancho Santa Fe Solana Beach Del Mar Encinitas

Check Engine Light Rancho Santa Fe Solana Beach Del Mar Encinitas

Check Engine Light Rancho Santa Fe Solana Beach Del Mar Encinitas

The Check Engine Light Rancho Santa Fe Solana Beach Del Mar Encinitas, according to Consumer Reports, is the most misunderstood indicator on your dashboard.  This warning light means many different things, from a loose gas cap to a seriously misfiring engine.  While you don’t have to pull the car over immediately, you should get the car checked out as soon as possible.  By ignoring the warning you might seriously damage expensive components.  Additionally, this light is a sign that your car is getting poor mileage and emitting higher pollutant levels.  The check engine light is part of your car’s on-board diagnostics (OBD) system. When there’s a problem that the system can’t correct, the computer illuminates a yellow warning indicator  and simultaneously stores a “trouble code” in its memory to identifies the source of the problem when scanned by a service technician.

In 1996, under OBD II regulations, car manufacturers were required to install a much more sophisticated system that essentially acts like a built-in emissions testing station. The computer monitors and adjusts dozens of components and processes. For example, it continually samples exhaust emissions as they leave the engine and again as they leave the catalytic converter (a device that removes pollutants from the exhaust). The system also monitors the fuel system to ensure gasoline vapors are not escaping into the atmosphere. If a problem occurs, the computer will wait to see if it corrects itself before turning on the light.

What To Do?

When the check engine light illuminates, it will either blink or remain constant, depending on the problem. Either way, you should have the vehicle checked, although a blinking light or a red light indicates a problem that needs immediate attention. In late-model cars, a blinking light usually indicates an engine misfire so severe that unburned fuel is being dumped into the exhaust system, where it can quickly damage the catalytic converter, requiring an expensive repair. If that happens, you should reduce power and have the vehicle looked at as soon as possible. If the light is steady, the problem is not an emergency but you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible.

Smog Inspections

Finally, when the check engine light comes on, do not go for a smog inspection. An illuminated warning light is an automatic failure, even if the problem is nothing more than a loose gas cap. And don’t bother trying to fool the inspection station by disconnecting the battery or using any other method to erase the trouble code. Your vehicle’s computer will let the inspection station know that its codes have been erased, and you’ll just have to go back again.

 

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