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One of the most notorious problems motorists have is the Check Engine Light (CEL), yet it itself is rarely a problem. It simply describes that the self-diagnostics system of a vehicle has encountered an error that could lead to progressively worse damage and potentially life-threatening consequences.

The problem with the CEL is that it tends to detect problems that may, while annoying, not necessarily be of a great enough magnitude to impede the use of your vehicle. This means that many people take the direction of simply taping some black electrical tape over their light to help “forget” about their problem.

Let’s explore what causes the CEL light to illuminate, what it could mean for your vehicle and how we at Pro Auto Repair can fix it for you.

What Causes the Check Engine Light to Illuminate?

The Check Engine Light is a simple indicator designed to notify the driver when the engine or another component needs to be serviced. It illuminates when a moderate to severe error has occurred, which in turn is indicative of a problem that will likely become worse.The CEL illuminates as the result of on-board diagnostic testing done by the ECU. This typically happens when a sensor detects abnormal conditions, such as too little oxygen detected by an oxygen sensor in the engine, or a component malfunctions, such as the engine misfiring in one or more cylinders.

The causes of these problems can be divided into two categories, both of which are bad for your vehicle:

Sensors malfunctioning

Components failing

If an oxygen sensor is faulty, then it may not be providing the right air-to-fuel ratio needed for combustion. This could reduce your fuel economy, cause misfires, and result in a loss of power. More important sensors like those related to ABS brakes could fail, which in turn could cause an immediate danger.

Failing components can represent minor to severe problems. Something as simple as a faulty spark plug could cause your engine to misfire, which in turn could result in severe damage if you allow these conditions to persist.

Why Should You Pay Attention to Check Engine Lights?

The biggest reason to have your car inspected when it needs Check Engine Light repair revolves around the fact that your vehicle’s computer has detected an error. You need to have this error read by a computer to determine how severe the problem is.Another reason to pay attention to your Check Engine Light is to determine the condition of your vehicle. If you have a problem with your automatic transmission input turbine sensor, for example, then your vehicle may be getting poor fuel economy, shifting improperly, and damaging the discs of your transmission. While it’s possible to continue running your car like this, it puts additional wear on your transmission that could require a costly rebuild if you don’t have the problem fixed.

How Do We Solve Check Engine Lights?

The fastest and most reliable way to obtain Check Engine Light repair is to have our mechanics assess the problem. We can check for failing components by using a number of mechanical and electrical tests, some of which utilize the extensive expertise of our mechanics and manufacturer diagnostics.We then repair the problem succinctly, which in turn enables you to have your vehicle performing at like-new conditions without a flashing or static Check Engine Light.

To learn more about our Check Engine Light repair, or to schedule an appointment to have your vehicle diagnosed and fixed, call us at 919-803-5253.

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