Common Check Engine Light Problems & How to Prevent Them

Perhaps one of the most annoying aspects of driving is when that check engine light comes on. Some vehicles have separate lights for common issues so you can investigate the issue and correct it, without a trip to the mechanics. But for other cars, the check engine light can be generic. Sometimes it may even turn on or off, making it even more frustrating. Here are just some of the things that can go wrong, and that should be checked out quickly:

Failure in the Mass Airflow Sensor

The mass airflow sensor will alert your vehicle's computer to add the correct amount of fuel based on the amount of air that's flowing through to the engine. If the sensor is faulty, emissions can increase. This means that your car has the potential for stalling potentially at unsafe times. This sensor can fail due to an improperly installed air filter, or one that's never been replaced. It's important to replace your air filter at least once per year as this will help keep the sensor from failing.

Spark Plug Failure

The check engine light can indicate that the spark plugs need to be replaced, or that the wires connecting them need to be replaced. The spark plugs are what seals the combustion chamber. They also provide a gap for the spark to jump and start the combustion to your engine. If the spark plugs are failing they can fail to misfire. One of the surest signs the spark plugs are failing is that you may feel a hesitation in your car's acceleration. Your spark plugs should be replaced once every 40,000 to 80,000 miles. Newer styles of plugs can last up to 100,000 miles, so read the product literature.

The check engine light can be annoying, but if you regularly do maintenance then you should be able to avoid most of these lights. Please make an appointment today at Austin's Automotive Specialists in South Austin, TX to have those check engine lights investigated.