What are common reasons the check engine light turns on?

What are common reasons the check engine light turns on?


When the check engine light turns on, it's not automatically a sign that you're on the brink of engine failure. But it's still smart to soon get to the shop for diagnostics. This way, you can find out if there are any emerging problems that can be nipped in the bud before they worsen and require more expensive repairs. Here are seven common check engine light triggers.

Faulty Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter performs the important task of turning carbon monoxide into a less harmful emission. Catalytic converter trouble could be brewing if you've noticed worsening acceleration or exhaust smoke that is especially dark.

Failing Oxygen Sensor

For proper monitoring of how much unburned oxygen is in the exhaust system, you need a healthy oxygen sensor. A faulty oxygen sensor can cause catalytic converter problems, as well as worsening gas mileage.

Bad Spark Plugs

Old, dirty spark plugs can cause poor engine performance and decreasing fuel-efficiency. Vehicles that were built after the year 2000 often don't need new plugs until 100,000 miles. Older vehicles usually need plug replacement more regularly.

Issues with Battery/Charging System

When a battery malfunctions, it can cause low voltage at the computer, which may cause the check engine light to illuminate.

Failing Mass Air Flow Sensor

MAF sensors keep tabs on the amount of incoming air and calculate how much fuel should be injected with it. When a MAF sensor malfunctions, the engine may stall shortly after it is started up.

Loose/Missing Gas Cap

It's important to keep your gas cap tightly sealed so that fuel doesn't evaporate. While it might seem strange, a loose or missing gas cap sometimes will trigger the check engine light.

Faulty Ignition Coil

Ignitions coils are integral to creating the spark that your engine needs to get fired up. Power loss and misfiring are signs of an ignition coil issue.

If you need auto repair, be sure to bring your vehicle to a reputable mechanic. For check engine light diagnostics & repair in Worcester, MA, contact the experts at K2 Auto Specialties at (508) 893-4420. K2 Auto Specialties also specializes in off-road customization in Worcester, MA. Feel free to give K2 Auto Specialties a call today to schedule an appointment for any of your vehicle's repair or maintenance needs!


K2 Auto Specialties Blog
Posted: January 23, 2021

Written and Published By MORBiZ