If the check engine light comes on while you’re driving, it can be unnerving. Don’t panic, though. … The check engine light means there’s a problem somewhere in your emissions system. Regardless, you’re safe to drive for now as long as the car isn’t performing strangely.
How long can I drive my car with check engine light on?
It’s okay to drive for a few miles, but be sure to schedule an inspection of the engine as soon as possible. If the check engine light comes on while you’re driving, don’t panic! Pay attention and see if the car is driving any differently than normal.
Can you drive around with a check engine light?
The rule of thumb is that if the check engine light is flashing, you can’t keep driving the car. It’s an emergency. Often it indicates an engine misfire. If you keep driving, you will likely cause irreversible damage, mostly to the (expensive) catalytic converter.
How serious is a check engine light?
The check engine light — more formally known as the malfunction indicator lamp — is a signal from the car’s engine computer that something is wrong. … If the light begins flashing, however, it indicates a more serious problem, such as a misfire that can quickly overheat the catalytic converter.
What is the most common reason for check engine light?
Replacing a faulty oxygen sensor — a sensor used to optimize a vehicle’s fuel-to-air mixture to increase gas mileage and reduce emissions — is the most common cause for a check engine light.
What does a solid check engine light mean?
A solid Check Engine Light can mean something like a loose gas cap, or it can indicate a more in-depth problem like a fuel, timing, or transmission issue. Get your car diagnosed, although the urgency isn’t the same as if the light was flashing at you.
How long can you drive with oil light on?
Generally speaking, you have about 2 weeks or 500 miles of driving before a flashing oil light turns into a legitimate problem. But once it hits that point, things can go downhill fast, leading to serious mechanical damage. So, try to get your vehicle into a mechanic sooner rather than later.
Will check engine light go off by itself?
A check engine light will shut itself off if the condition that caused it is remedied. … If you then did a bunch of highway driving before changing the oil, the specs may have dropped back into the normal range, causing the light to go off.
What to do if check engine light is on?
If the check engine light comes on, here are some tips on what you should do:
- Look for a serious problem that requires immediate attention. …
- Try tightening your gas cap. …
- Reduce speed and load. …
- Use built-in diagnostic services, if available.
How much does it cost to get your check engine light fixed?
The costs to fix whatever’s ailing your car — and causing the light to come on — can vary greatly. Repair costs for the most common check engine light problems range from under $20 to almost $1,200, according to CarMD’s analysis of millions of repairs recommended in 2016 in the U.S.