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5 Reasons Why Your Check Engine Light Came On

You’re driving along and suddenly your check engine light comes on. The ding it makes drew your attention to your dashboard. Everything seems okay. Your vehicle is handling as it always does and the dashboard gauges all read normal. You turn down your radio and you don’t hear any strange sounds. You sniff and don’t notice any strange smells. You can ignore it, right? Wrong. Swing by Primary Care Auto Repair so we can have a look. It could be one of these five things.

1. Oxygen Sensor Malfunction

The oxygen sensor measures unburned oxygen in your car or truck’s exhaust. It affects your vehicle’s fuel efficiency and can damage your catalytic converter or spark plugs when faulty. It can also cause your vehicle to fail a smog check, and you must pass one every two years in Rhode Island.

2. Gas Cap to Loose

You might not believe this, but if you just fueled up and didn’t screw your gas cap back on tightly, your check engine light may come on. This is to warn you of gas evaporation through the loose cap. This not only releases the fuel into the environment but also messes up your gas mileage.

3. Catalytic Converter Trouble

Here’s hoping this isn’t the reason why your check engine light came on because it can be an expensive repair. The catalytic converter’s primary job is to convert carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide. A failing one is not only dangerous to you but also the environment.

4. Mass Airflow Sensor Failure

Air runs over your engine to keep it cool. The mass airflow sensor determines the amount of air coming into your engine to measure it against fuel for maximum operating efficiency. A faulty sensor will reduce engine performance, fuel efficiency, and could damage crucial exhaust system components.

5. Worn Spark Plugs or Wires

This measured air/fuel combination is what the spark plugs ignite. If they, the wires, or any part of your engine’s combustion chamber is worn or faulty, your check engine light will come on. Spark plugs last much longer than they used to, but you still need to replace them when worn to avoid engine damage.

There may also be an electrical or other problem causing your check engine light to ignite, so don’t take chances. Bring your vehicle into Primary Care Auto Repair for a diagnostic check. We will determine why the check engine light is on and offer you a comprehensive repair plan. We are located in Warwick, RI, and you can reach us by phone at 401-320-4640.

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