Owning a vehicle is a freedom that is quite enjoyable until an uninvited guest rears its ugly head. Apprehension builds the minute an amber light appears in your peripheral vision as you drive. You’re hoping for ‘low fuel’, but no. Life isn’t that good to you. It seems to shine brighter than any other light on the dash. That display light that looks like Q-Bert shines brightly, and some cars even give you the words ‘Check Engine Soon.

Check Engine Light
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When the light was first installed in vehicles, the list of things that could be wrong was quite limited. In the 1980’s, it meant a problem in the emissions system. That light is no longer a ‘dummy’ light that translates to ‘change your oil, dummy.’ Nowadays it could mean an issue with transmission, heating or cooling, oil, electrical, brakes, or even the entertainment system. Really? Is it necessary to scare people with a check engine light to tell them the satellite radio cannot connect without an update?

Do you Have to Check the Engine Right When the Light Comes On?

Maybe you don’t have time (or fundage) to take your car in to have the check engine light … checked. The car is running fine for now, so what’s the hurry? Ignoring that light could compound a problem when if caught early, the solution is simple.

Mechanic Happy Thumbs Up
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Well, if you like donating to the Mechanic Extended Vacation Fund, go ahead. Instead of a repair or replacement that was an hour and a part, your disdain for the warning signals your car was giving means a rebuild and hours on a lift. Your technician might prefer to have 5 customers come in and get their cars fixed than deal with your huge self-imposed problem.

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Your doctor looks at the warning signs your body gives you. Blood pressure, cholesterol levels, or that weird mole are all indicators your body puts out. Your mechanic is a doctor for your car. The indicators are the lights. Pay attention before there is too much to overcome.

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