Check Engine Light: What’s it Mean?

check-engineThe holidays are stressful all on their own. Throw road travel in the mix and they can become downright hairy, especially if halfway through your drive the check engine light comes on.

While the “check engine” light can indicate serious problems, it can also alert you to minor, and possibly easily remedied, issues. Here’s a list of some of the problems most likely to trigger that dreaded warning light:

  • Loose gas or oil cap
  • Low fluid(s): Oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid, anti-freeze
  • Loose or broken belts
  • Worn-out spark plugs
  • Faulty sensors
  • Problems with the catalytic converter
  • Problems with the anti-lock brake
  • Problems with the airbag(s)
  • Blown head gasket

If you don’t notice any smoke or unusual noises or smells coming from your vehicle, and it’s not losing power or fuel efficiency, the situation is probably not dire. But do get your vehicle checked as soon as possible. The “check engine” light is designed to warn you of engine malfunctions, no matter how small so, ignoring even a tiny problem can lead to bigger headaches down the road.

To be on the safe side, why not schedule an auto checkup a week or two before your trip? A little forethought can prevent unnecessary stress during a season already fraught with it.

To schedule a service appointment at any of Butler’s Service Centers click here.

We wish you safe, happy, and “check engine light”-free holiday travels!



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