Auto Repair in Centralia, WA

3 Top Problems that Trigger the Check Engine Light


Vehicles have numerous ways of communicating with their owners about potential problems. This includes, sounds, smells, odd vibrations and of course there are the dashboard indicator lights. These include the ABS light (brakes), ALT light (electrical/alternator) and the nerve shaking check engine light! The check engine light is often associated with expensive repairs, and while it can be, it generally is just warning you about an impending issue that could be resolved rather easily with a minor repair. However if you ignore the light the problem it is informing you about will get worse and will end up costing you much more to repair the vehicle, as demonstrated by this first common check engine light problem.

Faulty Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter is a part of the exhaust system that transforms hazardous exhaust fumes into less harmful emissions. Unfortunately if this part malfunctions and needs to be replaced it is one of the most expensive repairs a vehicle may need. The check engine light will come on if a sensor detects that it is not properly performing its job, but there is a good chance the light was on long before this particular part bit the dust. It usually takes a different part to malfunction in order to cause the catalytic converter to go out, and whatever failed prior would likely have triggered the CEL first. This is why it is important to take your vehicle to the auto repair shop as soon as the light comes on, to address small problems that will only grow worse.

Loose Gas Cap

On the complete other side of the spectrum is one of the least expensive issues that can illuminate the light. A cracked, broken or loose gas cap will allow gas vapors to escape out of the filler hose. This will be detected by the Evaporative Emissions Control System and turn the light on. To avoid your light coming on because of this make sure your gas cap is in good shape and tightly applied every time you fill up!

Faulty Mass Air Flow Sensor

Another common issue that will cause the check engine light to come on is a bad mass air flow (MAF) sensor. This sensor detects incoming air and calculates how much of it needs to be mixed with the gasoline in order to create the perfect air/fuel mixture to make your car run well. If it malfunctions or even if it becomes covered in dirt or dust it won't be able to do its job and your car will end up burning excessive amounts of gasoline. This problem is generally a cheap fix and sometimes just requires dusting off the sensor!

Don't let the check engine light scare you, as many of the problems it is informing you about are inexpensive to repair, as long as they are diagnosed and repaired in a reasonable amount of time. If you need check engine light diagnostics in Centralia head to Transmissions Unlimited. There are hundreds of things that can trigger this light but whatever issue it is that has caused it to turn on we will resolve it! Give us a call at 360-736-2548 to schedule an appointment for expert Auto Repair Services or transmission repair in Centralia today!

Transmissions Unlimited Blog

Written and Published By MORBiZ


Transmissions Unlimited
1130 Kresky Ave.
Centralia, WA 98531