You may be driving your vehicle along like usual and notice that your check engine light suddenly appears on your dashboard. This may be especially alarming to you if your vehicle seems to be operating without any problems. As tempting as it may be to just ignore the light and keep driving until you notice any future problems, failing to address the issue that’s causing the light to come on can be detrimental to your vehicle.

Possibly a Minor Issue

Before you panic, you should know that your check engine light may signify only a minor problem that’s easy to correct. A gas cap that comes loose can sometimes activate the light, and having the cap tightened or replaced can resolve the issue. There could also be a simple flaw in your computer’s programming that can be easily fixed. Even if your check engine light comes on because of a minor issue, you still should have your vehicle inspected by a service professional to rule out any bigger problems.

Serious Auto Problems

If the check engine light comes on because of a direct problem with the engine itself, you should get the necessary repair work done to prevent more serious mechanical malfunctions from occurring. Fuel delivery or troubles with the emission system can make your check engine come on as well. Your engine could also be misfiring, or there might be problems with your spark plugs or other wires. Failing catalytic converters or exhaust system parts are also known to activate the check engine light.

Environmental Hazards

In addition to being harmful for your vehicle, mechanical problems that activate your check engine light can be bad for the environment. Damaged engines and other auto part failures often cause unhealthy levels of pollutants to be emitted into the air. Oil leaks that result from engine problems can also have dangerous effects on soil and water.

Your check engine light can be your first line of defense against more serious problems that may be developing with your vehicle. To request an estimate on any professional auto service that your vehicle may need, contact our team at Kelowna Transmission & Auto Repair.