Check Engine Light

Don't Ignore That Light

The Check Engine light - more formally known as the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) - is a signal from the car's engine computer that something is wrong. The light may be flashing or constant, it may come on and go off intermittently. It may be yellow, red or amber in color. When the check engine light illuminates, this is an indicator from your cars computer that a system has malfunctioned. If the light begins flashing, however, it indicates a more serious problem, such as a misfire that can quickly overheat the catalytic converter. These emissions devices operate at high temperatures to cut emissions, but can pose a fire hazard if faulty. There are many systems and components of these systems which can cause the light to come on. It could be something as simple as a gas cap that has not sealed, it could be that an oxygen sensor is malfunctioning, it could even mean the car needs a tune up due to a condition called misfire.

In NC, a car built in 1996 or after must pass a state inspection every year to renew registration and the vehicle will not pass inspection if the check engine light is on. Experts say that many drivers confuse the "service required" light on the gauge cluster for the Check Engine light. These warning lights are unrelated. The service required light just means the car is due for an oil change or other routine maintenance. It is not the indicator of trouble that the Check Engine light is.

North Davidson Automotive can diagnose and pinpoint any components that may be causing your engine light to illuminate. We can also change your oil if your service required light comes on.