Why Does My Check Engine Warning Keep Coming On?

The check engine light on the dashboard is a priceless tool. Studies show that this light warns drivers of engine trouble that they would otherwise not see, hear, smell, or feel. Scotty’s Automotive advises that there are many reasons why the check engine light comes on. In fact, there are hundreds. We are going to list the common reasons for check engine light warnings below.

You’ve Got a Bad Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter has a lifespan of about 90,000 miles. This is part of the exhaust system and it changes carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide so it can be released through your vehicle’s exhaust. The catalytic converter can clog and it can also go bad. Your check engine light will come on if it does.

Your Gas Cap Is Too Loose

The gas cap creates a vacuum seal over the gas tank so that the gas does not evaporate out of it. As such, it’s a bad thing if your gas cap is too loose. Your check engine light will come on until such time as you tighten the gas cap and re-create the seal needed over the gas tank opening.

Your MAF Sensor Has Died

Another thing that will trigger a check engine warning is your mass airflow sensor. We call it the MAF sensor, and if it gets dirty or dies, your check engine light will come on.

Your Oxygen Sensor Has Died

The oxygen sensor has a lifespan of about 60,000 miles to 90,000 miles before it can malfunction and die. When this happens, you will end up with the check engine light illuminated on your dashboard. Replacing the oxygen sensor resolves the problem.

Your Spark Plugs Are Misfiring

Another thing that will leave you with the shining check engine light is if your spark plugs are misfiring. The spark plugs can misfire when they are old and dirty or there is a problem with the spark plug wires. The engine control unit can also cause the spark plugs to misfire.

Your Transmission Is Bad

If your transmission is having problems, you will end up with the check engine warning because there is no transmission light on your dashboard.

You’ve Got a Vacuum Leak

Finally, an engine vacuum leak can also turn on the check engine light. Other signs that you have an engine vacuum leak include your engine sputtering, sporadic RPMs, and suction noises coming from the engine.

Scotty’s Automotive in Montague, NJ, can help. Call us to schedule a diagnostic check if your check engine light is on.

Photo by matsou from Getty Images Signature via Canva Pro

Accessibility Toolbar