Check Engine Light: is it an emergency?

Every driver has experienced that stressful moment when the Check Engine light on the vehicle’s dashboard comes on. In many cases, it means that something serious is wrong and that you should take your vehicle to your NAPA AUTOPRO centre right away so a certified technician can identify and fix the problem. Getting your vehicle checked by a professional as soon as possible is often the right call, although in some less urgent cases, parts can be ordered and replaced in the next few days. 

Late model vehicles are equipped with an on-board computer that manages all components, mostly notably the power train—from the fuel supply to exhaust gases—but also peripheral systems like the brakes, electric system, air conditioning, and even tire pressure, through a network of sensors linked to the computer. 

When the main computer detects a problem, a light on the dashboard turns on to notify the driver. Red lights indicate issues that require immediate attention. Your certified NAPA AUTOPRO technician will use a scan tool to get the diagnostic trouble code(s) of a defective part or component. Your vehicle’s owner manual will contain information on the various dashboard Check Engine lights and what they mean. 

 If you don’t consult a professional when the Check Engine light comes on, you could end up with serious damage or even compromise your vehicle’s safety.