4 Reasons Your Check Engine Light Is On

Posted on: 3 April 2017

Too often, people will panic when their check engine light appears on their dashboard. However, not many people know the top reasons why this light has been ignited. Most likely, you have no reason to panic, but you should still take your car in to the mechanic promptly. Here are the four main reasons your check engine light is on:

  1. Oxygen Sensor Needs Replacing: The oxygen sensor is needed because it determines how much oxygen is left to burn inside of the exhaust system. If the oxygen sensor fails, then you are going to be spending much more on your fuel costs over time. Eventually, damage will be done to the spark plugs, as well. For this reason, it's definitely best to save the cost of the extra fuel by replacing the oxygen sensor as soon as possible. 
  2. The Gas Cap Is Loose: If the gas cap is loose, then your check engine sign will turn on. Luckily, this fix is simple. You can tighten the gas cap yourself instead of having to take the time to take your vehicle in for repairs. However, if the light does not turn off after a few minutes of driving your vehicle when you have tightened the cap, then there's likely another problem, and you should have your vehicle checked out by a professional. 
  3. Catalytic Converter Needs Replacing: The catalytic converter is what helps convert carbon monoxide to carbon dioxide, which is much better for the environment. For this reason, if the catalytic converter is not working properly, then you won't pass your emissions test. This means that you cannot get your new registration. It is better to replace the converter now than to wait until you need to pay registration fees for your vehicle on top of the cost to have your car's smog check. 
  4. Sparks Plugs Need Replacing: If the spark plugs need replacing, it's likely because they have become worn over time. If you don't have the spark plugs replaced, then your vehicle's performance is going to be poor because your engine won't ignite the air and fuel mixture in the vehicle, which is needed for your car to drive properly. 

When you know these four reasons your check engine light could be on in your vehicle, then you know what you need to do to resolve the issue and why it's important that you do so in a timely manner.