Will It Damage My Engine if I Continue to Drive My Car With the Check Engine Light On?

If you have been driving and your check engine light goes on, should you get worried? Should you continue driving with the light on?

The check engine light is an indication that something is amiss with your car. It could be as simple as a loose gas cap or engine problems. Therefore, you should not ignore your engine light just because the car is still running. You may not see an immediate effect, but with time, it may cause severe damage to your car.

Reasons Why Your Check Engine Light Goes on

Your check engine light could illuminate due to the following reasons:

Bad Oxygen Sensor

The oxygen sensor tracks the amount of oxygen in your fuel system. It ensures that the engine air-fuel ratio is efficient and balanced. Otherwise, a faulty sensor leads to less air in the engine, causing your car to consume more fuel. It may also damage the catalytic converter and cause a potential spark plug.

Faulty Fuel Cap

A broken or faulty gas cap causes a leak in the fuel system, making the engine light go on. If you notice that this is the issue, you can tighten the gas cap or replace it, then continue driving. The light should go off after a while, but if it doesn't, you should contact our shop to check it out.

Failing Catalytic Converter

Your check engine light may go on as an indication that your catalytic converter is failing. A catalytic converter converts harmful gases into harmless and odorless gases. If your catalytic converter fails, your car may smell like rotten eggs, and even worse, you may inhale harmful gases.

A failed catalytic converter impacts the performance of your vehicle, and if the problem is not addressed immediately, it may start to damage other parts.

Engine Problems

Though it is not very common, your check engine light may go on as a result of engine misfires and overheating. The misfires could be fuel-related or spark-related. A faulty spark plug leads to poor fuel and engine performance.

It is best to have our mechanics check the car as soon as the check engine light goes on to avoid damaging your engine or the overall performance of your vehicle.

For professional check engine light diagnsotics, feel free to bring your vehicle into our auto repair shop today!

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