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Author Topic: Driving WIth Check Engine LIght On? Back to Topics
AFOS

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Chicago

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Message Posted: May 12, 2011 1:04:44 PM

Are you presently driving with the CEL on? I am. Car stumbled for about 30-60 seconds at startup yesterday but has driven fine since. This triggered the CEL with a code for cylinder 1 misfire. Until the problem becomes recurrent, I will drive with the CEL light on rather than spending a ton of money chasing would could be a very elusive problem.
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nascar44
Rookie Author New Orleans

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Message Posted: Dec 16, 2014 1:17:01 PM

NO!
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Dec 8, 2014 10:48:46 PM

No that's not good on the later models, other problems can crop up, then limp mode sets in. Poor performance, poorer mileage, possible engine damage.

I realize since the early "80's" many CEL's would come on and only minor causes often were found, many into the mid "90's" lighted and still those engines often chugged along almost Happy and the Driver got the Wrinkles along with his billfold.

I believe everyone is still breathing with the junk added on back then, and much better technology has been a big benefit today. The tacked on devices were a pain, short lived, but to breath, things are getting better. More complex, and sometimes hard to accept that your car has a BRAIN to deal with, and the owner gets to turn it on(the Key)!
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blk911
Champion Author Colorado Springs

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Message Posted: Dec 8, 2014 10:13:26 PM

NO! Last time it came on it was an oxygen censer. Replace it easy fix.
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JohnCur
Veteran Author New Jersey

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Message Posted: Dec 8, 2014 9:30:31 PM

No
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GasMiser718
Champion Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Dec 8, 2014 2:18:41 PM

No, i'd have it checked out....
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redfish67
Champion Author Dallas

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Message Posted: Dec 2, 2014 10:10:00 AM

no
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TonyRay7
Rookie Author Maine

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Message Posted: Dec 2, 2014 9:46:47 AM

Even if you check the code and decide you can live with it, now you will not know of any new codes causing the CEL to come on. So no I wouldn't for that reason.
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heyman_31036
Sophomore Author Georgia

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Message Posted: Dec 2, 2014 8:51:25 AM

Mine was on my car but it was a $25 dollar solenoid. No way around it as have to pass emissions every year..
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Nov 26, 2014 9:36:17 AM

It's always proper to get a code reading info. Still many loose weathered sensor wire connections can cause/trigger CELs.

Often vacuum lines/connections on older aged vehicles causes some under-hood devices to temp. fail their duties. Often at the onset of Fall Season even a thermostat can become sluggish in it's operation and along with the aging battery condition when colder mornings appear.

Heavier weight oil change practice (old school) stuff for a high mileage engine can cause lower cold-start crank speed working against mapped ECM/EFI injector settings for a non start engine flood condition on severe cold first start-ups.

Battery cable connections seem the worst culprit, when Summer is over. Then also one Summer overheat condition can sometimes ruin an engine's thermostat or slightly damage the thermostat's proper function., also radiator pressure caps can lose sealing pressure(not common) but happens.

Pre "80's" vehicles some had cables that could deteriorate in electric amp conductivity due to aging, no CELs but failed starts by starter amp lagging. Remember contaminated storm water isn't great when showered over the engine components wiring hardware, Watch out for those deep water rain puddles(submarining/surf riding/whatever.....with your vehicle, often = corrosion is not your engines friend, months later.
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GLM4205
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Nov 24, 2014 5:51:36 AM

No
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roost1
Champion Author Missouri

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Message Posted: Nov 23, 2014 7:05:24 AM

Mine comes on from time to time and stays on for a while.
Code says fuel pressure incorrect. Check cap.
Never been a problem except the light is annoying.
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AFOS
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Nov 21, 2014 9:00:33 PM

3 1/2 years after my original post, and the light was reset, it has not returned once. Whatever happened was a one time fluke.

[Edited by: AFOS at 11/21/2014 9:01:03 PM EST]
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Mikeyy1960
Veteran Author Cape Coral

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Message Posted: Nov 20, 2014 3:42:03 PM

no
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poetdog73
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Nov 20, 2014 1:47:14 AM

never
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GasMiser718
Champion Author Detroit

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Message Posted: Nov 19, 2014 9:54:57 PM

Go to a auto parts store and see if they will read the code to see what the problem is..
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pvdray
Sophomore Author South Bend

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Message Posted: Sep 22, 2014 3:22:34 PM

drove with it on all the time with my last car
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twt
Champion Author Virginia Beach

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Message Posted: Sep 22, 2014 3:41:08 AM

If the light is on, something needs fixing. Driving constantly with it on, is a good way to get stranded, somewhere.
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Nuzan
All-Star Author Nevada

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Message Posted: Sep 21, 2014 9:52:30 PM

No
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AFOS
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Sep 21, 2014 8:57:35 PM

Other than pull the code (see original post) & reset the CEL, I did nothing. It's not returned in 3 1/2 years (daughter has the car now). So I think I made the right choice.

[Edited by: AFOS at 9/21/2014 8:58:08 PM EST]
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luvmyrv
Champion Author Winnipeg

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Message Posted: Sep 21, 2014 8:52:41 PM

only if your stupid
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GLM4205
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Sep 21, 2014 4:22:09 PM

No
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dassfg
Champion Author Fort Worth

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2014 8:18:30 AM

Need to have it checked out
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Boyrr
Champion Author Allentown

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2014 8:02:42 AM

you should have it checked
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hoopitup2000
Champion Author Virginia

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Message Posted: Sep 19, 2014 6:35:42 AM

No . . . .
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Awing1
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Sep 18, 2014 10:59:57 PM

no
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poetdog73
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Sep 18, 2014 5:47:59 PM

no
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luvmyburgi
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Sep 18, 2014 2:32:07 PM

No
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weddy11
Champion Author Phoenix

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Message Posted: Sep 18, 2014 9:42:18 AM

I try to fix it myself. I don't drive with the CEL very long.
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Sep 18, 2014 9:07:49 AM

Vehicles that get 16-20 years old, but still in use often get many vacuum lines that leak, both hoses/plastic type crack with heat stress over time. Monitor devices/servos lose vacuum/fail with engine running poorly, idle unstable...rough/erratic/loss in mileage. Sometimes affecting the automatic tranny shifting.

Some vehicles can have PCV system aging with partly clogged problems often due to poor design/forgotten maintenance. Also it often takes a broader source of DIY knowledge in order to get correct repairs/service done at a savings.

CEL ON are only a slight clue to raise the hood, get proper help, in order to examine everything, one look and the hood goes back down, Right! Most cases a Doctor needed..... Dammmmmm CEL..... = budget $$$ = book reading!
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WilhamClouse
Champion Author Calgary

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Message Posted: Sep 17, 2014 11:43:30 PM

Check engine light is always on…..
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carinthuist
Champion Author San Francisco

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Message Posted: Sep 17, 2014 7:15:31 PM

no
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Jetta_Pilot
Champion Author Toronto

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Message Posted: Sep 17, 2014 10:50:28 AM

There are two types of CEL, one is a solid light CEL and the second is a flashing CEL. A solid means something needs your attention but is not too serious. I changed tail light bulbs to LED and got a solid CEL because the computer was not getting the correct resistance reading to the bulbs and figured a bulb was out.

A flashing CEL, better get it looked after ASAP !!!!

See this link for more info:
http://www.edmunds.com/car-care/what-your-check-engine-light-is-telling-you.html
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redfish67
Champion Author Dallas

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Message Posted: Sep 7, 2014 11:21:49 AM

no
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jdmd6613
Champion Author Memphis

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Message Posted: Sep 7, 2014 9:38:10 AM

NO
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badbobKY
All-Star Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Aug 10, 2014 2:29:56 PM

no
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46chief
Champion Author Indiana

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Message Posted: Aug 9, 2014 10:43:33 AM

Only long enough to get it to the repair shop.
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MertieMan
Champion Author Lexington

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Message Posted: Aug 9, 2014 8:08:14 AM

Then take it to most any auto parts store and they will check it free for you.
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Awing1
Champion Author Ontario

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2014 12:00:50 PM

No, I can bear it for a few days, but I will find a way to fix it. My hyundai santa fe frequently shows light on and it was from fuel cap.
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AFOS
Champion Author Chicago

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2014 10:31:02 AM

Code diagnosis WAS done (see original post). The light went out on its own. 3+ years later (my daughter now has the car), the problem has never recurred

[Edited by: AFOS at 8/7/2014 10:32:02 AM EST]
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Hemond
Champion Author Providence

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2014 2:10:44 AM

I could not stand looking at a CEL. I would read the code and jump on the 'net to diagnose it.
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krazkar
Champion Author Calgary

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Message Posted: Aug 7, 2014 12:37:12 AM

My check engine light is almost always on. So is the airbag light….16 year old car, no big deal.
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poetdog73
Champion Author Toledo

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Message Posted: Aug 6, 2014 3:43:20 PM

no
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carinthuist
Champion Author San Francisco

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Message Posted: Aug 6, 2014 3:30:32 PM

no
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redfish67
Champion Author Dallas

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Message Posted: Aug 6, 2014 10:13:53 AM

no
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Aug 6, 2014 9:52:38 AM

I posted somewhere about a relative's vehicle acting up and using a quart of oil every 400-600 miles but not seen at the tailpipe or under carriage as oil leaks.

The CEL stayed lit, owners continued to drive it mostly hiway for the 70% of mileage accounted for. Later over a month or more other drastic problems was happening and compounded with later realized damage/costs.

The first problem was #1 cylinder spark-plug becoming caked up with carbon deposits an then some misfire during early warm-up @ 55-60* F mornings, along with lean-outs, A..tranny erratic behavior, high oil use on the average.

This was I believe an "81 0r 83" year model 4 cylinder(a really good engine), the main problem believe it or naught ended up being a stupid designed PCV valve mounting design, not the valve but the rubber grommet which reached it's life span at 44K miles from being new,(actual mileage.

The whole problem was an oil soaked decaying grommet mount for that PCV valve never getting replaced, and all the other problems came along as a result by ignoring the CEL indicator.

Well for a DIY'er I was stumped, never gave up, serious thought and a few trial tests over a three week check/report info from the Drivers of the vehicle, my limited knowledge led me to sort out each malfunction the hard way.

The first sign was visible all the time, but looked minor,(bad greasy decaying PCV grommet) only to the extent of an oily mess still thought to be minor>>. a 1st. stage error other than the CEL lit. All engines seem to have an oily spot somewhere, don't-u-know after a few miles with a bit of grime.

The problem was the bad grommet lost its ability to hold the crazy mounting effort of the PCV valve as designed in its effective place for proper performance, thus causing other problems to group up, and the fact that the owner/drivers ignored the light and service check, moral to this is "Messy isn't good" and can be misleading to some/most drivers, and coin flippers. My headache solved, relatives made up the costly final result repairs which showed up later as drive line FWD damage, Big Geesh !........
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drivebye
Champion Author San Jose

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Message Posted: Aug 6, 2014 1:36:23 AM

Although it may be a non-issue, I agree with others who suggest getting it checked.
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MeTaBall
Champion Author Maryland

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Message Posted: Aug 5, 2014 10:11:28 PM

Light will go out after a while.
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Ratso
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 6, 2014 6:17:48 AM

Cheezus, go to Auto Zone and they will check your computer to see if what your doing is going to blow a block !
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redfish67
Champion Author Dallas

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Message Posted: Feb 5, 2014 10:24:17 AM

It can be diagnosed for free, then you can decide if it should be taken care of. Beats having your car break down!
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dontuknowOH
Champion Author Ohio

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Message Posted: Feb 5, 2014 9:18:45 AM

Not always but the starting of the Fall season when the morning start-up temps are lower and then a CEL shows on, that can be something as simple as an aged battery, poor cable connections, sluggish thermostat, possible loose belt (engine drive belt tension).

Colder weather causes everything to stiffen, battery voltage/amps to drop off, everything requires more effort, energy effort to comply. What works reasonable during warm conditions can often become boarder-line then waiting to act up and fail.

Modern vehicles ECM controlled are more sensitive to needing a good stable battery condition, many owners try to get the ultimate life time span from each battery but that can be a mistake (older vehicles) often limped to life with a marginal aged battery ,but EFI systems ECM related have a critical slow crank speed (start-up) RPMs necessary can suffer do to a poor battery losing voltage overnight(cold night).

CEL may show a temporary loss in ECM track settings before a flooded engine condition exists that prevents starting, battery warmers may extend the usable life if not forgotten to be plugged in beforehand.
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espo85
All-Star Author Connecticut

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Message Posted: Feb 5, 2014 9:05:43 AM

That's a pretty dumb idea.
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