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What kind of problems does the "Check Engine" light refer to? How dangerous is it to drive with the light on?

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Judy Curry, Co-Founder and Vice President of Marketing at Currys Auto Service The "Check Engine" light illuminates when the engine's computer sees a sensor outside of a predetermined value that is considered "normal operation". If the light is on steady there should be damage to any system in the engine. If the light is blinking on and off then you would need to get it check as soon as possible.

Kristin Brocoff, Director of Corporate Communications at CarMD.com Adopted as a government mandate to lower emissions, the "Check Engine" light comes on when a vehicle�s computer detects a problem that impacts emissions output. All 1996 and newer cars, trucks, SUVs and minivans manufactured for use in the U.S. ' foreign and domestic ' have this technology. It can signify anything from a minor problem like a loose gas cap to a major car repair expense such as a catalytic converter or transmission failure. It is never a good idea to ignore the check engine light because even a minor problem can eventually snowball into an expensive repair. Plus, if you are driving with a check engine light on, you are likely harming the environment and costing yourself extra at the pump. It�s not usually necessary to panic or pull over when the light comes on, but it is always a good idea to have it checked out as soon as possible. There are products, such as CarMD, available to let drivers check it out for themselves. Or you can see a qualified automotive technician for a diagnosis. Another important note: if your vehicle�s check engine light is blinking or flashing it usually indicates a more severe problem. When this occurs, it�s best to limit your driving, check your vehicle service manual and schedule an appointment to have the problem looked at by a professional technician as soon as possible. Kristin Brocoff | Marketing & Public Relations Manager CarMD.com Corp.

Laurie Sarno, Co-Owner at Super Girls Auto Hello Bobbie- the check engine light refers to the engine emission control systems- there is a possibility that the engine may quit running ( if the light is on)- however the vast majority of cases it is not dangerous to operate the vehicle with the light on - take it to your local Auto Zone & they will scan it for free - or take to your trusted repair facility & ask them to scan it for you- hope this helps thanks Super Girls Auto.

Pat Fleischmann, Director of First Impressions at Community Tire Pros & Auto Repair Bobbie~ Anytime your light comes on is a signal to you that your very technical vehicle has an issue. First get your manual out for the referral of your car.This could be as simple as a loose few cap to a very complex engine issue. The link to the article below may help you to understand that I have included. I suggest you take it to your dependable AskPatty.com, Inc. Certified Female Friendly

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