Check Engine Lights

Is Your Check Engine Light On?

If the check engine light has turned on in your vehicle, stop by Sir Thomas Automotive Repair, Inc. today for professional engine diagnostic services. We'll find out what is wrong with your vehicle and repair it or refer your vehicle to a specialist who can.

Understanding Your Vehicle's Light Issues

Check Engine Light: This light usually points to a problematic circuit, as opposed to a specific component, sometimes resulting in a lengthy process to identify, diagnose, and repair. We strongly recommend that you get it checked out or you'll risk damaging the engine or emission components.
One of the most common reasons for a check engine light to illuminate? A loose or faulty gas cap. After filling up, make sure you secure your cap on tightly.
SRS Light: This is your airbag system. Given that this is a safety system, it is well monitored with sensors and automatic self-tests. The slightest malfunction illuminates the SRS light. The vehicle can still be driven, but at the risk of your safety.
ABS Light: The ABS system helps you from skidding out of control during braking by limiting your wheels from locking up and skidding. The vehicle can still be driven, but at the risk of your safety.
Low Coolant Light: This will come when the coolant drops below the level sensor. The most common reason is a leak or an electrical fault in the warning lamp circuit.
Can it be driven? If there are no major leaks, the vehicle is not overheating, and there is still some evidence of coolant in the overflow bottle, it can be driven. If you can see coolant, typically a green color, leaking on the ground, then tow it.
Red Oil Light On: Stop driving immediately and shut the engine off. Your engine oil may be low or there may be an issue with the circuit. Refer to the owner’s manual, check the oil level, and add as necessary. Internal engine damage can occur if this is not taken care of promptly.
Red Brake Warning Lights: DANGER. If the brake pedal feels abnormal or spongy, do not drive it. Tow it. Make sure that your emergency brake is not on, as this will illuminate a red brake warning light.
Yellow Brake Warning Light: This is an early warning system for brake pad wear. Have your brakes checked to decrease the possibility of extensive damage.
Can it be driven and for how long? Yes. How long depends on your driving style. City drivers with constant stop-and-go traffic will need their brakes addressed more often than someone who does highway driving. However, you can do more damage to the brakes by wearing the pads down to the metal backing plate, which could then damage your rotors. If you continue to drive until you hear or feel grinding, you should stop driving and have your vehicle towed.
Air Suspension Lights: Indicate that there is a leak of air or hydraulic fluid.
Can it be driven? Sometimes, but if the suspension is lower than usual, and/or the vehicle just does not feel right, tow it. Extensive damage could result if the suspension drops too low while driving.
Tire Pressure Warning Light: If your tire is low on air, your car lets you know via sensors mounted in various places. Sometimes, the reset procedure is as simple as pressing a button. Other times, it involves setting the tire pressures and recalibrating the computer.
Emission Warning Light: This lets you know that an emission component has failed or detected a fault. If the light starts flashing, pull over and shut off vehicle immediately. Restart if the light is not flashing. If the light continues to flash, shut it off and have it towed. A flashing light usually means the catalytic converter is being damaged.

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