Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!





Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Did you get a great deal? Let us know in the Values & Prices Paid section!
Meet your fellow owners in our Owners Clubs

Check Engine light

145791034

Comments

  • bblahabblaha Posts: 329
    What does this mean?

    "hard start in morning, engine temp running high and going through some coolant, little chugs and other quirks"

    I'm not a mechanic either, but I can understand how the engine can perform badly if the computer isn't accurately receiving some of the inputs it needs (O2 and coolant temperatures) to control the combustion process (fuel flow rate etc.). Since you've replaced the 2 "bad" sensors, and the error codes are still popping up, it makes sense that the ECM is itself bad. But does your above statement imply you are losing coolant?
  • Yes, I have been losing some coolant, but see no visible external leaks and the engine oil looks fine. I haven't been losing an incredible amount of coolant, but it does seem more than on would normally expect and, of course, I'm more aware of even the small things now that there are things wrong.

    Appreciate your response. The tend to confirm some of what I am thinking as well, but just not too confident of my own opinion in this area. Thanks for taking the time to help a guy out!
  • butch11butch11 Posts: 153
    Pull your spark plugs and check for discoloration. Also with the engine cold, remove the radiator cap (assuming you have one) with the coolant full to the neck of the cap, start the engine and see if the coolant is "jumping" around.

    If you do not see a coolant leak, I would be very concerned about where it is going.

    Let us know what you find.
  • Greetings, All! I'm brand new here, and it looks like this is the place to get answers. I just purchased a used 1998 Dodge Neon with 26,000 miles on it...A real beauty, with the DOHC 150hp engine but auto transmission (sigh). The check engine light came on night before last, along with some hesitation, and stayed on for about 24 hours. The hesitating ended almost immediately, by the way. Also, my fuel mileage is awful! About 20 mpg. So...should I go ahead and take it back to the dealer for a day of warranty-covered service looking for problems? Or ignore the check engine light (like someone suggested earlier) and try to clean the fuel system with additives?
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Since your fuel economy is going down hill and your emmissions should still be covered under warranty,personally,if it were me,I would let them deal with it and fix it.It could be anything from a loose gas cap to an oxygen sensor.But with out a scanner,there is no way of knowing for sure.
    Some of these jokers who posted to just ignore the light have no clue how the system works and what it does.Sure,the engine may run fine,but have you ever seen an engine torn down that has been run lean for 10,000 miles?It ran great for those 10,000 miles until the pistons burnt thru.The O2 sensor had gone and the guy was too cheap to find out what the problem was,so instead of spending $50 for the diagnostics and $85 for the sensor,it cost him $2000 for a new engine.Still think ignoring it is a good idea?
    Anyway,it should be under warranty,so why not get it fixed?
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Heed Opatience's advice. The MIL doesn't come on for no reason. The engine management computer has detected a sensor input not within specified parameters, or a combination of inputs which can't exist (eg. trans in gear, high engine RPM, but zero vehicle speed). If an intermittent fault, the MIL might go out after a given number of ignition key cycles, but in any event a diagnostic trouble code will be stored. Do like the man suggests, and take it back.
  • tmalltmall Posts: 3
    On pre OBDII cars, you could get the trouble codes from the computer without scan tools. For example, on Chrysler products, turning the ignition on-off 3 times would flash the codes. On GM's, short terminal A on the diagnostic link to gound and the codes would flash.
    Does anyone know of a way to do this now? Particularly on a 2000 Honda? Or is a scan tool absolutely required with OBDII?
  • I have a brand spanking new 2001 Olds Silhouette (500 miles). The check engine light has come on 3 times now. I have Onstar, they can do a remote diagnostics, I contacted them each time and they keep giving me the same code p0440. The dealer said that they are getting that code too but can't find why. They told me to bring it in next Tuesday (this is the only day that I really don't need the van)and they will look at it right away. I have checked the gas cap and make sure it clicks at least 5 times. Do any of you have any thoughts or questions that I might ask the dealership. Thanks for your insight.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    tmall,NO.Scanner is required.

    gditullio,

    DTC P0440
    Description
    The EVAP Large Leak Test is based on applying vacuum to the evaporative emission (EVAP) system and monitoring the rate of vacuum decay. The powertrain control module (PCM) uses the input from the fuel tank pressure (FTP) sensor in order to determine the rate of vacuum decay. At an appropriate time, the PCM turns the EVAP canister purge valve ON (open) and the EVAP canister vent valve ON (closed). This allows the engine to draw a vacuum on the system. At a calibrated time or vacuum level, the PCM turns the purge valve OFF (closed), and tests the system vacuum. If the system is unable to achieve the calibrated vacuum level, the PCM will set DTC P0440.

    Conditions for Running the DTC
    DTCs P0107, P0108, P0110, P0112, P0113, P0115, P0117, P0118, P0121, P0122, P0123, P0125, P0443, P0449, P0452, P0453, P1106, P1107, P1111, P1112, P1114, P1115, P1121, or P1122 are not set.
    The system voltage is between 10-18 volts.
    The startup engine coolant temperature (ECT) is between than 4-30°C (39-86°F), but the start up ECT is not more than 8°C (14°F) more than the startup intake air temperature (IAT).
    The startup intake air temperature (IAT) is between than 4-30°C (39-86°F), but the start up IAT is not more than 3°C (7°F) more than the startup ECT temperature.
    The fuel tank level is between 15-85 percent.
    The barometric pressure (BARO) is more than 75 kPa.
    The vehicle speed sensor (VSS) is less than 75 mph.
    Conditions For Setting the DTC
    The EVAP system is not able to achieve or maintain vacuum during the diagnostic test.

    Action Taken When the DTC Sets
    The control module illuminates the malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) on the second consecutive ignition cycle that the diagnostic runs and fails.
    The control module records the operating conditions at the time the diagnostic fails. The first time the diagnostic fails, the control module stores this information in the Failure Records. If the diagnostic reports a failure on the second consecutive ignition cycle, the control module records the operating conditions at the time of the failure. The control module writes the operating conditions to the Freeze Frame and updates the Failure Records.
    Conditions for Clearing the MIL/DTC
    The control module turns OFF the malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) after 3 consecutive ignition cycles that the diagnostic runs and does not fail.
    A current DTC "Last Test Failed" clears when the diagnostic runs and passes.
    A history DTC clears after 40 consecutive warm-up cycles, if no failures are reported by this or any other emission related diagnostic.
    Use a scan tool in order to clear the MIL and the DTC.
    Diagnostic Aids
    Use the EVAP pressure/purge diagnostic station in order to pressurize the EVAP system to aid in locating intermittent leaks.
    Move all EVAP components while testing with the ultrasonic leak detector.
    A temporary blockage in the EVAP canister purge valve, purge pipe or EVAP canister could cause an intermittent condition. To repair a blockage in the EVAP system refer to Evaporative Emission (EVAP) System Cleaning.
  • I want to check the codes on a 1985 Buick Regal,,I have done it before on a differnt car,that car the plug was under the dash,,I am supposed to have a plug on this car ,but I can't find it,,also,I have been getting the engine check light come on once in a while,,mostly when you slow down for a stop sign,, I was going to change the e.g.r valve ,and if I can get to it,the oxygen sensor,,the valve moves when you push up on it,,but can it still be bad?
  • Thanks 0patience. I have printed out your response and will hand it to the dealer. Will let you know how everything goes. Thanks again I really appreciate it. I like going to the dealer with some kind of idea what is going on.

    S.DiTullio
  • Thanks for the advice! I'm taking my peppy little Neon in for service tomorrow, covered under warranty.

    ~Jevin111
  • tmalltmall Posts: 3
    0patience,

    Sounds like you have some experience in this area. Can you recommend a decent hand-held model that can be used on all makes and that can monitor signals and not just 'get codes'? Graphing ability and/or interface with a PC is also desireable.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Check posts #s 276,277 and 278 of this topic.
    A couple of us discussed this about the scanners,there are links to the scanners too.
  • trussstrusss Posts: 10
    Hi,
    Can someone knowledgeable enough to tell why the engine check light on is on though the car is running normal, and temp. is reading normal? I am not sure if i wanna bring it to the shop, please give me suggestions what i should do
    thanks
    FYI: Mits. Eclipse GST 41,000 miles
  • I had posted last week about our new 2001 olds silhouette. The check engine light keeps coming on. 3x's in 3 weeks. This last time the light was on for a 6 days. They told me to just drive it and hopefully when I brought it back in they could figure out why it was coming on. Onstar did two diagnostics on it and each time the code was P0440. I took it back in yesterday, asked for the service manager and told him that I wanted him to take of the car. He asked if the light was still on I said yes he then went and sat in the car and came back and said "since this is the third time you have been here..let us give you a rental car so we can keep your car so they don't have to rush. Fine with me. They kept it over night. Well he just called and said that the check engine light was not on when the tech got the car..yeah right. Then he said they went down the list of what GM would want them to do and can't fine anything wrong, and since the light isn't on now there is nothing they can do till it comes on again...unreal. I asked if they replaced the gas cap and he said no that it wasn't the problem. Now what do I do. I really like this van but this is getting frustrating. Any input would be appreciated. I contacted customer service and they haven't gotten back to me.
    S.DiTullio
  • bblahabblaha Posts: 329
    There are lots of people more knowledgeable than me that post here, but even I can tell you that noone can tell you why your check engine light is without finding out what trouble code caused the light to turn on in the first place. There are several things that will turn the CEL on that have nothing to do with the engine. Emissions for example.

    I'm guessing your Eclipse is fairly new with only 41000 miles (97 or newer?). You'll probably have to hook a reader up to determine what the trouble code is. On older MY vehicles, it often possible to get the code yourself (key sequence, terminal short, etc).

    Your best bet may be to just call around and ask what someone would charge you to just read your trouble code. Go to the least expensive (none should really be very expensiv anyway) and then come back here and post what the code is. Guys like 0patience can then let you know what it means and how important it is to get it fixed.

    Of course, even if it turns out its fairly benign, you probably still want to get it fixed so that next time, when a trouble happens that is critical, you'll be aware because the CEL came back on. If you're driving around with the CEL on all the time you wouldn't know.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    gditullio,
    If there is another dealer near you,I would suggest going there.This dealer does not want to deal with you.Whether the light is on or not,the codes will be stored for a number of restarts,usually 10-20.If OnStar can pull the codes,then the dealer should have had no problem getting them.There are times that it will turn the light on with a temporary fault code,but that isn't the way the system is designed.
  • Here is a time frame for you:

    3:00 customer service calls. I explain everything to them. They said they would check it out.

    3:15 customer service calls back and said that they talked to the service manager and that they agree with him that unless the light isn't on they can't figure out what is wrong. That I should just drive it till it comes back on. I told them I want a list from the service manager on everything they had supposely checked so when I call GM I can tell them what they did. Customer service said okay.

    3:25 Service manager calls and said that the check engine light came back on and that they have p0442. And that they will have my car ready in an hour. When questioned about how this could happen in 10 minutes he said well sometimes this is how things happen. My final line to him was:
    I might have been born at night...but not last night. Did they fix it? I don't know.. Will I take it back to them? I looking for a new Olds service department. I was thinking of still contacting GM's Olds division and ask them if they could recommend a dealer. Will keep you updated...Thanks to all
    S.Ditullio
  • For those out there that have access to codes. On my service write up they wrote. Found code P0442 fuel pressure sensor bad. Replaced sensor and rechecked working at factory spec.
  • trussstrusss Posts: 10
    Well, I have called up a few machanics about to run an engine diagnostic to find out the trouble code. There was this machanic i called up, he said " Oooh boy ! My computer is down, what i will suggest you to do is to disconnect your car battery for 10 mins and then hook it back on and see if the "check engine" light is disappeared." well, i thought that was a pretty good idea but I thought again, I might run into trouble like unable to play my car radio or i might have to pay $50 to $70 to MITS. to get the passwords. So i have decided not to do so and i will bring my car to Automotive Diagnostic service center this weekend and i will post my trouble code to you here.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    That information was directly from GM for your vehicle.Specifically for your vehicle from the year,make and model that you posted.
    If you want to e-mail me the VIN number,I will see if the same info comes up.They have to be using the same system,so I don't see how they could come up with different info.Hmmmmmm.
  • trussstrusss Posts: 10
    i went to the automotive diagnostic service center and ran a thorough engine check up and the machanic found the trouble code. the trouble code is P01710. Whatever the code means, he told me that I need to replace the HEATED OXYGEN SENSOR (HO2S). After the checked up, i think the machanic turn off the CEL. i wonder how important it is to have the oxygen sensor replace?
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    If it isn't,then it isn't a hard fault and the sensor isn't entirely bad.
    I checked thru all of the software and manuals I have for your vehicle and can't find a P1710.
    It wouldn't be a P01710,as the zero is not used on the 1000 codes.But,if the mechanic wants to replace the sensor because of the code,ask him if he tested the sensor.If the fault was a problem fault,it would have illuminated the check engine light again,even if he cleared the codes.
    If the O2 sensor is bad,then performance and fuel economy will suffer.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Absolutely!! You can replace it yourself.It sounds like your mechanic did check it out.More than likely the sensor is what is called "LAZY",meaning that the sensor is not switching like it should.The sensor is on he exhaust pipe or manifold and may be really tough to get to sometimes.Remember to put some never siexe on the threads.
  • The check engine light is back on...Should I get GM involved before I take it to other dealer? Maybe 4 times will be the charm...0patience I printed out the info you emailed me and faxed it to the service manager. No response from him either.
    S.DiTullio
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    I know it is frustrating and I would definitely look into another GM dealer.
  • I have purchased an used '97 Honda Passport and the check engine light has come on. I suspect it is due to the cold weather. A few weeks ago when the weather was cold, it came on. But a couple days later when the weather warmed up, it went off. And the temps have gone to freezing again, and the light has turned on. What's up with that? Can the problem also be related to an overheating problem I have when the vehicle is in four wheel drive? It overheats when driving long steep inclines. It works ok in four wheel drive when driving flat rocky terrain. Help!
  • bblahabblaha Posts: 329
    I think you probably have a sensor (or wiring)that is poorly connected. Thermal expansion (or contraction in this case) breaks the contact when the weather is cold.

    Are you saying your engine overheats in 4wd, but not in 2wd, going up a long steep slope?
  • Replacing the o2 sensor is not too difficult, Obd11 vehicles usually have 2 o2 sensors. The hego sensor (o2) is a VERY important part of the performance and emissions of a vehicle. It's heated because an o2 sensor does not work until it reaches abour 300 degrees. They added an element around the tip that heats the sensor to get it to 300 degrees so it can go from a default loop status (where the vehicle runs off of default settings, waiting for proper o2 signal information.) I am guessing that the code is being pulled up because of a time frame problem. In other words, if it expects 10-20 seconds of warmup time to reach 300 degrees is not seen and the ecu does not see proper operation, then the code pulls (maybe it's taking 25 seconds). The code is stored, but the car runs fine.
  • I agree, it might be a contracting problem. I would go through and reseat connections on sensors. Voltage creates mild corrosive insulation over time and reseating the connections will take care of that. The uphill overheating problem: It the radiator fluid low at all? 4Wd setting you said? Do you hear any noises while in 4wd, like any bearing dragging noises? It could be a pinging problem of having too much of a load and the computer detects an abnormally high engine load condition with slightly lower crankshaft position timing. Hard to say. Check all the simple stuff, fluid levels, fan clutch operation, timing. Hope this helps.
  • 79377937 Posts: 390
    Re post # 327 Opatience. I use the Actron model CP9035 scanner available for $200. It's simple, easy to use, and well made. It can read and erase codes and works on all OBD2 compliant vehicles. It's powered from the diagnostic socket. The only drawback is that the engine cannot be running while you draw the codes. But that is no major problem. After all, what do you expect for 200 bucks? It is still an ideal gadget to have around and tells you where the problem area is.
  • butch11butch11 Posts: 153
    If you have a laptop with a hefty hard drive and ram-you might consider looking at OBD2 scanners that record codes in real time with the engine running and on the road. If you get one that only captures the signal with the engine running-you have a snapshot in time-might be ok-but if you have a laptop-suggest you look at a system that will dynamically record those events.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    butch11 and 7937,
    I did say that actron was an adequate scanner.
    AutoXray will show realtime moniter modes.
    Actron won't,but it will do everything else.
    AutoTap is a PC based program that will pull the codes,clear them and moniter,but it is also about $400 for GM,Chrysler and Ford capabilities and the other manufacturers aren't available yet.And it will probably cost over $100 for the upgrades to the other manufacturer's.
    I use Snap-On's MT2500 scanner and OTC's scanner at work(they both are in the couple thousand dollar range) and an AutoXray scanner at home.
    I have had to deal with numerous scanners and have found bad ones and good ones.The ones I listed in posts 276 and 278 are ones that I would recommend,but that is my personal opinion.
  • This is the most informative website I have found re: check engine lite problems. My car has been in the authorized Mercedes Benz service shop since Oct 18 2000 because the check engine lite went on. The mechanic has 15 years experience with MB. He said that cylinders 4 & 6 were not firing properly & even with the help of the regional MB service center he could not determine the cause. On Nov 3 he said he found water in the gas tank & fuel line & would replace those. On Nov 11 he was still doing the replacement. This is supposedly a warranty covered repair but I am frustrated by this 23 day period when this so called high quality & reliable MB has been useless to me. After reading about the codes I think proper testing & interpretation should have pinpointed the problem in the beginning. Your comments please.
  • butch11butch11 Posts: 153
    According to the code obtained on a 96 tbird, v6, the oxygen sensor has a problem-is not working. My neighbor is almost as cheap as I am and does not want to change the sensor. If the sensor is not functioning I am assuming it will just take longer to warm up-run too lean when cold but when it does get to operating temperature, there should be no problems. It runs fine now and others have done this same bit with their cars and apparently no problem.

    What will happen by driving it with the faulty O2 sensor.
  • I own a 1996 Rodeo and the check engine light comes on and off at will. It is in the shop every other week for the problem. The technicians think they have the problem fixed, the light will stay off for a few days, then it comes right back on. To be frankly honest, they don't know what is wrong with it. Anyone have any suggestions on what could be the real problem.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    fembot,
    Click on This link and ask "wire",give him as much information as you can on it,he is the only mechanic I would have work on a Mercedes.If you can provide him with the info of trouble codes and such from the work order,he will be able to assist you better.


    butch11,
    just because the code came up for the O2 sensor,it is a circuit fault,which could be the sensor or the circuit.Running with the O2 sesnor not working will put it into a "limp" mode and if you run too long that way,it will eventually take it's toll on the engine.What was the code?Maybe we can help you test it.Also,a $90 sesnor is cheaper than an engine rebuild.Check Expressautoparts.com for pricing.

    modst1,
    Need to know what the codes were to help you.
  • The error code stated failure of EGR value PO401. Last month EGR value was replaced and EGR flow R&R value was cleaned. The problem still remains to be fixed. By the way the light is back on and goes back to the shop tomorrow.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    If they have replaced the EGR valve and cleaned all the passages and made sure that there is nothing in the pintle of the EGR,then the connecotrs or wiring harness to it may have a problem.
  • I recently bought a 96 spyder GST, its a boom machine.

    I am worried about one thing, 'Check engine light' glowing up everytime i start my vehicle, and then it goes off after some time, is this a problem or is this the way it is supposed to be...

    Someone please help me out...
    thanx
  • bblahabblaha Posts: 329
    How long before it goes off? Probably, its just a lamp check, verifying that the bulb works...
  • thnaks bblaha,

    Its there for about 10-15 seconds.
    Maybe, then its just a lamp check... please confirm.
  • I have a Volkswagon Passat (1996) TDI. Best car I've ever owned. UNTIL NOW! First there was a droning sound coming from the exaust almost like a low toned saxophone. Turns out the brick in the Catalitic converter was 90% blocked and had broken inside the casing. Easy fix.....Took the catalitic converter off and got rid of the brick by busting it to pieces and removing it (don't understand why a diesel has a catalitic converter anyway). Well this fixed the problem. NOW my check engine light is on. Here's where things get sticky!! This car is supposedly designed with 3 sensors on the exaust. 2 sensors are temperature sensors (1 on the front and 1 on the back of the catalitic converter) the other sensor is a "fuel metering device". Basically what all of this does is this; "Catalyst operating temperature might not be maintained under certain driving conditions. Fuel is injected before the catalyst by an additional fuel metering device which is controlled by two temperature sensors, one before and one after the catalyst. The amount injected is controlled by the Engine Control Module." OK,...Whew.........now that all of that is said,....what does it all mean? Is my system "squirting" too much fuel now that I did away with the brick inside the catalitic converter? Is this why my check engine light is on? How do I do away with this "additional fuel metering device"..or can I? HELP!!! I thought I understood volkswagon diesels..Guess not.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    You have "modified" the computer system.It doesn't like it and you cannot remove all of the stuff on the exhaust without creating more headaches.
    If you are in an area that does emission tests,you are not in a very good condition.It is illegal to alter emission controls on vehicles and it carries a hefty fine.
    The only way that you are going to cure the problem and get it running right,is to replace the bad converter.
  • Thanks for the advice. I assumed what you are telling me prior to "boring" out the catalitic converter. I was told, however, that there are no emission tests in Texas (yet). So with this in mind, I went ahead and did what I thought was best. Something I don't understand though,.....If this "additional" fuel metering device is in fact an additional feature, why can it not be bypassed? I've owned diesels for over 15 years and never run in to problems like this. Catalitic converters on a diesel engine is ridiculous. If taken care of, they run cleaner than any gasoline engine without it. (due to combustion ratios the fuel is more completely burned). Is there no way to adjust the computer?
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    They may indeed burn more efficiently than gas engines,but not that efficient,they definitely do not run cleaner.
    There is no way to adjust the computer,it is the PROM(Programmable Read Only Memory) that tells it what to do.And unless you know someone that can reprogram them and is willing to take the liability of the fine on the off chance that DEQ decides to check it,there isn't much that you can do.
    I'm not that knowledgeable on your vehicle,but if a sensor was incorperated in the exhaust system by the manufacturer,it was put there for a reason,whether it wsa to make it meet the emissions specs or to make it run better,unless you are exactly sure what you are doing,making modifications to these newer vehicles will give you nothing but headaches.
    The days of modifying engines on shoestring budgets are just about over.
    These computer systems are real touchy about having things changed on them,they deal in a range of absolute values and modifying them changes those values.
    I wasn't happy when electronic distributers came out,these computers are much worse.
  • I have a 93 Lexus with about 100K miles. The engine light came on a few days back and I took it to the dealer. The diagnostics showed that 2 oxygen sensors were not functioning. The technician said that I can drive the car but it may fail inspection. Do I need to replace the sensors as soon as possible or can I wait for some time? Any suggestions? Thanks.
  • I would replace them to get the vehicle running at a proper air/fuel ratio. With lazy o2 you won't get the proper rich/lean rich/lean switching as fast as normal. It could also be a heating problem with the heating element, which keeps the vehicle running on default settings. This will cause the cats to work hard to keep the air clean and can prematurely lead to cat failure, which will show too high hydrocarbons on the smog meters. If the sensors aren't replaced, your o2 readings will be way too high on idle and on the 2500rpm test. Plus, your gas mileage will improve a little. Car smog is much tighter than truck smog, so there is less give for a poor-running car.
  • Does anyone know where the switch is to turn off the check engine light in a 1996 Hyundia Elantra?
Sign In or Register to comment.