Is Your ‘Check Engine’ Light On?

One of the most vital signals of an improperly functioning vehicle is the Check Engine light and when illuminated, it alerts the driver to a variety of existing potential problems.

“When the Check Engine light comes on, it means that a vehicle system, such as the ignition, fuel injection or emission control, is not operating properly, even if the vehicle appears to be running normally,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council.     “A glowing Check Engine light doesn’t mean you have to immediately pull the car to the side of the road, but it does mean you should get the car checked out as soon as possible.  Ignoring the warning light could result in costly repairs.  At the very least, the light could alert you to an engine problem that is negatively impacting fuel economy.”

If the light flashes, the condition is more critical and must be checked immediately to prevent severe damage.

Once the vehicle is in the automotive shop, a technician connects your vehicle’s computer system to a diagnostic scan tool.  From here, the technician can look for codes, analyze data streams such as the idle speed, throttle response, engine temperature, fuel system pressure, manifold vacuum, exhaust emission levels and many other key indicators.  Afterwards, the technician can advise if further testing is needed or make the recommended repairs.


Can I have my new vehicle serviced at the independent repair shop I always go to, AND keep my factory warranty?

As a vehicle owner, you know how important it is to keep up with routine maintenance and repairs.  But can a dealer refuse to honor the warranty that came with your new car if someone else does the routine maintenance or repairs?

ABSOLUTELY NOT!  In accordance with Federal Law, the Magnusen – Moss Act of 1975 prohibits new car dealers from implying or denying warranty service because routine scheduled maintenance was performed at an independent repair facility.

Maintenance schedules vary by vehicle make, model and year; the best source of information about routine scheduled maintenance is your owner’s manual, or stop in to your favorite and trusted auto repair facility.

So now you know, you don’t have to take your vehicle to the dealership for maintenance services to keep your manufacturer’s warranty intact!

(Title 15-Chapter 50-Section 2301-2312 US Federal Code)