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5 Quick Fixes When Your Check Engine Light Comes On

Your car's check engine light is on. You don't know what it means, but you're pretty sure that it's not a good thing. So what do you do? In this article, we'll tell you what the check engine light means, and give you some tips on how to fix it. Read on to learn more!

Amie-Lynn Mitchell

Content Creator

If you're like most drivers, seeing your check engine light come on can be a pretty scary experience. Suddenly, you have this warning light that is telling you something is wrong with your car, but it doesn't specifically indicate what's wrong. That pesky light can be signaling something as simple as a loose gas cap and thankfully, in many cases, can be rectified in a few simple steps. Here are 5 quick fixes for when your check engine light comes on - most of which can be done without the help of a mechanic. 

What the check engine light means

We've all been there. You're driving along and suddenly, out of the corner of your eye, you see a little light on the dashboard. It's the check engine light (CEL), and it can be seriously frustrating - especially if you don't know what it means.
Essentially, the check engine light is a way for your car to communicate with you that something isn't quite right. It could be a minor issue or something more serious which requires immediate attention. Either way, it's very important to take note of the CEL and get your car checked out as soon as possible.
Ignoring the check engine light can lead to much bigger problems down the road, so it's always best to err on the side of caution. If the light doesn’t go away after checking out these top tips, your next step will be to book an appointment with a trusted mechanic.

5 quick fixes for when the check engine light comes on

The check engine light is a signal that your car's computer has detected a problem. It could be something as simple as a loose gas cap, or it could be something more serious. The best way to find out is to take your car to a mechanic and have them run a diagnostic test.
If the problem is something simple, there's a chance you can fix it yourself. Let's explore the 5 best case scenarios for when your check engine light comes on:
1. Tighten the gas cap - This is one of the most common causes for the check engine light to illuminate on your dash, and it's usually as simple as making sure the cap is tight and secure.
2. Check the air filter - If the air filter is dirty or clogged, it can cause the engine to run poorly and trigger the check engine light. Changing or cleaning the air filter can often fix this problem.
3. Replace the spark plugs - If any of the spark plugs in your vehicle are old or worn out, they can cause engine problems, and trigger the check engine light. Replacing them can often solve the issue.
4. Add fuel system cleaner - If your car has been running rough or misfiring, it could be due to a dirty fuel system. Adding fuel system cleaner can help to clean out gunk and dirt from the system and restore performance. Ensure that you do some research and determine if this is the best option for your vehicle. 
5. Turn your car off and then back on - this will reboot your car's computer. 

When to ignore the check engine light

Never! The fact is, ignoring your CEL can lead to more serious problems down the road. So, if your check engine light comes on, there's no need to panic! There few simple solutions above are some great DIY options before taking it in for a check-up. But if you're not sure what's wrong, don't hesitate to speak with the pros.
So, there you have it. Your car’s check engine light comes on for a reason – it’s telling you that there’s something wrong and needs your attention. We know it can be frustrating  but following these tips will help get you back on the road. And don’t forget – regular car maintenance is key to keeping your vehicle running smoothly for years to come. We hope this article has helped give you a better understanding of what the check engine light means and how you can take care of your car so that its performance (and your wallet) stay healthy for all the roads ahead.