You travel home from work and flash the engine control lamp – the worst nightmare of drivers. For most people this means that they have to take the car to a car mechanic, but sometimes you can diagnose (and possibly repair) the cause of the problem.
The most obvious thing is that the engine should be checked. But many people do nothing because they are afraid of a high repair bill.
It’s best if you go to a service and ask them to run a diagnostic program that tells the reason for the lamp’s lighting.
5 common reasons
1. Replace the oxygen sensor, lambda probe
The oxygen sensor monitors the oxygen content of the exhaust gas. It helps to monitor how much fuel is burned. The defective sensor will send incorrect data to the onboard computer. Most cars have more oxygen sensors.
What causes: Over time the sensor is covered with oil, which reduces its ability to change the oxygen-fuel mixture. The defective sensor may also cause an increase in emissions.
2. The fuel cap is loose or defective
You do not even think how important the fuel cap is. From an environmental point of view, fuel vapors can’t get out of the fuel system, when the fuel cap is loose or cracked, fuel vapors leak and “overturn” the entire fuel system. Gas emissions are reduced, emissions increase.
What Causes: The cap is cracked or not tight enough
What to do: Check if there is no crack on it. Continue driving and see if the lamp goes out.
3. Replace the catalytic converter
The catalyst used to reduce the exhaust gases. It converts carbon monoxide and other harmful substances into harmless compounds. If the catalytic converter does not operate properly, fuel consumption increases, the car will not move faster, even though you press the accelerator pedal.
What Causes: The main cause of the fault is related to other causes such as faulty oxygen sensor, damaged candles, and improper burns in the engine.
4. The air flow sensor is defective
This tells to the on-board computer to provide an adequate amount of fuel on the basis of the air coming through the sensor. Failure can increase fuel consumption and emissions.
What Causes: Most air flow sensors are lost due to improperly installed (or never replaced) air filter.
What to do: Replace the air filter at least once a year.
5. Replace spark plugs or ignition cables
The spark plug is used to start the “burn” in the engine. If the plugs do not work, the candles cause a misfire. If this happens, the car shakes when it is accelerated, the engine runs unevenly.
What to do: Spark plugs should be replaced occasionally
Do not ignore the signal!
If the engine control lamp lights up or you detect a seriously power problem, reduce the speed and try to reduce engine load.