Check Engine Light | Auto Repair Shops Lewisville, TX

Why the Check Engine Light is On?

The check engine light can be alerting you to a problem from a number of potential issues. Onboard computers and advanced technology have changed automobiles from mechanically operated to electronically operated machines. While this is good for performance, fuel efficiency and reduced emissions, it has greatly reduced do-it-yourself auto repair. Today’s automotive mechanics in our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX, and across the nation require specialized knowledge to keep your car running at top performance and provide professional automotive repair.

The check engine light is a notice to take your automobile in to your mechanic. A Fifth Gear Automotive ASE certified technician can diagnose the reason for your car’s check engine light being on at our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.

What the Check Engine Light Means

The “check engine” light is part of an automotive onboard diagnostics (OBD) system. Computers increasingly control and monitor vehicle performance, regulating engine speed (RPM), fuel mixture, and ignition timing, for example. In some cars, the computer controls when the automatic transmission will shift.

The check engine light will come on when the OBD identifies a problem in the electronic-control system that it is unable to correct. When the light is activated the computer stores a code in its memory, identifying the source of the problem, such as a malfunctioning sensor, for example. The code can be read by an electronic scan tool or a diagnostic computer, such as the advanced equipment found in Fifth Gear Automotive auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.

Manufacturers originally used the OBD system to help mechanics pinpoint and troubleshoot malfunctions. Today, the systems are required under federal law governing automotive emissions, and perform like a built-in state emissions testing station. The computer monitors and adjusts dozens of components and processes such as sampling the exhaust emissions as they leave the engine and again when they leave the catalytic converter.

In addition, the system monitors the vehicle’s fuel system, ensuring that gasoline vapors are not entering into the atmosphere through a leak, a loose or a missing gas cap.

Furthermore, the check engine light can indicate a problem with the engine or transmission. The location of the problem may be somewhere else entirely, while causing an issue with any of the systems being monitored. A loose gas cap is an example of this.

The most common causes of the check engine light may be a loose vacuum hose, a bad O2 sensor or other sensor. The light will come on for a problem with the catalytic converter, or the transmission may be in need of service such as a fluid and filter change for example. Fifth Gear Automotive can check the cause of your check engine light and provide the repair your car needs at our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.

Perhaps you have a check engine light coming on and then going off. It may be occurring infrequently and doesn’t stay on long enough to get it to your mechanic while it occurs. With today’s automobiles’ that is not necessary, the information will be stored in your vehicles onboard computer and is available to our certified technicians using modern diagnostic equipment in our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.

What to Do If the Light Comes On

  • Check the dashboard gauges and lights for any indication of low oil pressure or overheating. If the gauges verify a problem with either, pull off of the road in a safe place. Look under the car for signs of an oil leak; raise the hood to check for steam indicating a coolant leak. DO NOT attempt to remove the radiator cap, serious burn and injury may occur. Check the radiator coolant when the vehicle is cool. If oil or coolant is leaking have your car taken to our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.
  • Check to ensure the gas cap is on securely.
  • If the dash gauges do not indicate any problem with temperature or oil pressure and no other detectable problem is heard, felt, or otherwise detected, take your car to a reputable garage for the cause of the engine light warning to be checked as soon as is possible. While the problem may be a small one, there is always the possibility of it being a serious issue that could result in catastrophic damage to a major component if ignored.

Call Fifth Gear Automotive, we will diagnose your check engine light problem, and provide any needed repair at our auto repair shops in Lewisville, TX.