Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 22

Thread: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Raleigh NC, USA
    Posts
    3,628

    Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    http://www.newsobserver.com/104/story/543805.html

    A company is installing kiosks that help you understand what the Check Engine light is telling you. For $15 it will print out a list of stored codes and suggest possible causes.

    Chip H.

    Former owner: 2012 Honda Civic LX, 2006 Honda Ridgeline RTL, 2000 Honda CR-V EX, 2003 MINI Cooper S, 1992 Honda Accord LX, 1999 Mercedes ML-320, 1995 VW Jetta GLX, 1991 Mercury Capri XR2, 1981 Mercury Zephyr, 1975 Chevrolet Impala

  2. #2
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    A company is installing kiosks that help you understand what the Check Engine light is telling you. For $15 it will print out a list of stored codes and suggest possible causes.

    There are many places that will tell you for free. But a dealer can charge you more than a hundred bucks to tell you (I know somebody who was dumb enough to take a car to a dealer to find out why the lamp was on. I told him next time, I will tell him for free).

    But for about $25.00, you can buy your own OBD2 tester on E-Bay. If your car is old enough to be OBD1, then no equipment is needed to get the code other than perhaps two inches of wire on GM vehicles.

    Or, if you're too lazy to look up the codes on the enclosed chart (or on the internet) with the cheap $25.00 testers, you can buy a fancy tester for about a hundred bucks that will tell you in English what the problem is without using a chart. I have a cheap E-bay one ($25.00) at one house and an Innova 3110 (about a hundred bucks) here at the Reno home.

    -Don-



  3. #3
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Testers? We don't need no stinkin' testers!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Kwozzie1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Sunshine Coast, QLD, Australia
    Posts
    2,072

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    I drove from Los Angeles to Maryland a few years ago, in a '90 Volvo 740. (Arranged through Auto driveaway)

    I took Interstate 70 through the mountains and east of Vail there were a couple of passes I had to go over.

    As I got to the summit of the first, the dash lit up like a Christmas Tree. I pullled over and stopped. I checked all levels and belts...all seemed okay. As it was a downward slope I headed down to the valley and stopped at a servo for fuel and re-check. The servo assistant came over and I asked him to have a look. First thing he did was look at the rego plate.... "Ah a California car" The all do that he told me, the emission gear gets confused at altitude. After the next pass and when you wake up in the morning in Denver all the lights will be out.

    They were..... half of the lights I did not recognise. I had the same year Volvo and it never showed thise lights.
    Mainly because catalytic stuff wasn't a requirement for NZ.
    Rex
    On the Sunshine Coast, in the Sunshine State Queensland (QLD), Australia

  5. #5
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Testers? We don't need no stinkin' testers!

    Would "code reader" sound better?

    -Don-

  6. #6
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Quote Originally Posted by DonTom
    Testers? We don't need no stinkin' testers!

    Would "code reader" sound better?

    -Don-
    No "codes" for me, either chief!

    Keep them damn computers outta my garage...

  7. #7
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Keep them damn computers outta my garage...

    What is your newest vehicle? Do you own any that are OBD1 or OBD2?

    No ECM in any of them?

    -Don-

  8. #8
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Quote Originally Posted by DonTom
    Keep them damn computers outta my garage...

    What is your newest vehicle? Do you own any that are OBD1 or OBD2?

    No ECM in any of them?

    -Don-
    The '98 Nissan is OBD1, methinks.

    Every few months the "check engine" light flashes; I disconnect the battery, remove and clean the O2 sensor - and it seems to be ok for another few months... other than that, no fuss, no muss!

    And the truck's parked outside; everything in thge garage has carbs... 13 of them, all told!

  9. #9
    mrblanche
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Quote Originally Posted by Kwozzie1
    They were..... half of the lights I did not recognise. I had the same year Volvo and it never showed thise lights.
    Mainly because catalytic stuff wasn't a requirement for NZ.
    So you don't have the single best invention for improving emissions?

    Or is it just that you didn't have them back then?

    By the way, Denver is my home town.

  10. #10
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    The '98 Nissan is OBD1, methinks.

    1998 should be OBD2. Even my 1996 Saturn is OBD2 as well as my 1997 Jeep and 1997 Sebring. 1996 is when they went to OBD2.


    Every few months the "check engine" light flashes; I disconnect the battery, remove and clean the O2 sensor - and it seems to be ok for another few months... other than that, no fuss, no muss!


    What makes you think it has anything to do with the O2 sensor?

    Flashes?

    Read this:


    http://www.dmvnv.com/emission_obd.htm

    Under certain conditions, the dashboard light will blink or flash. This indicates a severe problem. The driver should reduce speed and seek service as soon as possible. Malfunctions which cause a flashing light can seriously damage emission control system components in a short period of time, especially the catalytic converter.

    -Don-

  11. #11
    mrblanche
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Is this a case of "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing?"

  12. #12
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    It actually doesn't flash - it just lights and stays on.

    The vehicle has no cat - I removed it years ago.

    As far as the O2 sensor, etc. - I dunno! But it does cause the light to turn off. The truck runs fine - light on or light off.

    So I leave it be...

  13. #13
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    It actually doesn't flash - it just lights and stays on.

    I can't believe you won't spend $79.00 bucks for a cheap code reader that will tell you why that lamp really went on. I will bet it has nothing to do with your O2 sensor.

    Here is what you need:


    http://www.obdcom.com/

    -Don-

  14. #14
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    The vehicle has no cat - I removed it years ago.


    Why did you remove it?

    I wouldn't change anything in the smog stuff in a car that uses OBD2. I would think you would be asking for trouble by doing so. There's just too much being checked and any changes you make could screw things up.

    I know our Mustangs have several O2 sensors. At least one after the cat, to check that it's doing its job.

    Perhaps thats why your light comes on. I would only question why it's not always on.

    I guess there are no smog checks in your area.

    -Don-

  15. #15
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Why bother?

    As I wrote, the truck runs just fine, light on or light off.

    And I have about as much interest in "reading codes" and "scanning" as I do in cell phones and PDAs!

  16. #16
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    "Why did you remove it?"

    It basically fell off, actually. The exhaust system rusted out. And I didn't want to spend the $100-plus bucks on a new converter (the OE piece is a lot more expensive than that, too). It runs a bit cooler - and I get a few MPGs better mileage, as well as a little more power. All in all, it seems to run better without it than with it. And since there is no smog check in my area, why mess with it?




  17. #17
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    And I have about as much interest in "reading codes" and "scanning" as I do in cell phones and PDAs!

    He who rejects change is the architect of decay. The only human institution which rejects progress is the cemetery.
    --Harold Wilson


    -Don Quoteman


  18. #18
    Vulture of The Western World Eric's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    The Land of The Edentulites
    Posts
    22,732

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    Change is not always for the better!

    I pick and choose the "improvements" and "advances" that come along. For instance, I could not care less about "high definition" TV - and I'll be damned if I rush out like the rest of the consumerist lemmings to squander $1,000 or more to replace my perfectly functional standard TV!

    I don't need no stinkin' scanners, either!

  19. #19
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    All in all, it seems to run better without it than with it.

    I suppose that's possible even with OBD2. But I wouldn't expect such. Perhaps your old CC had a problem so it runs a lot better without it.

    -Don-

  20. #20
    DonTom
    Guest

    Re: Know what your "Check Engine" light means

    I could not care less about "high definition" TV

    That makes two of us. I too, never got on that band wagon.

    -Don-

Similar Threads

  1. Check Engine Light on (code P0432)
    By bikerlbf406 in forum Car Care & Repair
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 08-30-2011, 07:20 PM
  2. How to handle a "check engine" light
    By Eric in forum How-To
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 03-11-2011, 09:45 AM
  3. '97 Expxplorer Check Engine Light
    By bikerlbf406 in forum Car Care & Repair
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 06-08-2009, 08:32 PM
  4. Dakota Check Engine Light Question
    By bikerlbf406 in forum Car Care & Repair
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 06-20-2008, 04:19 PM
  5. CHECK ENGINE LIGHT
    By ChevyMan in forum Car Care & Repair
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-23-2008, 11:49 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •