What is that light?

So you have all of your bags packed, the coolers are filled, and are about to leave the house for your long deserved family vacation. The family piles in the car, you wave to the neighbors and you take off. You make a right turn onto Sunny Avenue, a left onto Vacation Boulevard, then out of no where you look down to check your speed and you see a yellow warning indicator light on your dash. Not a great way to start a vacation.

The most common light that comes on most vehicles is called a check engine, or service engine soon light. This light can come on for many different reasons. The purpose of this light is to let you know that a particular part or system on your vehicle is not working properly. While most of these issues do not affect the direct performance of the vehicle, it is a great idea to have the vehicle checked as soon as possible.  

The biggest question that I am asked is whether it is safe to continue to drive your vehicle with this light on or not. While it is difficult to answer this question without being able to check the vehicle, most time this light comes on the vehicle is fine to be driven until you can have it properly diagnosed. The only time that I would suggest not driving the vehicle is if the check engine light is flashing, or if you have noticed a performance change with the vehicle.

There are so many reasons this warning indicator come on, it is essential to have your vehicle checked by a factory trained technician. The cause of this light can range from engine misfires, failed electrical sensors, to even a fuel cap not being tightened well enough. Most of the time special tools and equipment are needed to determine the exact cause of failure. Most times this process will take less then an hour, and you could stay and wait while we check it for you.

So in a nutshell, if you are leaving for that perfect vacation, and that light decides to show its face, it's not need to panic. Continue on your way, find your nearest dealer for consultation on if it is a repair that needs to be taken care of right away, or if it can wait until you make it home. If you have any more questions please contact me at 410-957-1414, and don't forget to follow us on Facebook.


Categories: Service
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