Dec 15, 2023

Drivers are just realizing why the engine fault light turns on even if there's nothing abnormal after a simple mistake

CAR owners have realized that their check engine lights are turning on even when there's nothing wrong with the vehicle due to a simple mistake.

Drivers were made aware of the potentially costly error after a mechanic took to social media to explain the situation.

Influencer and auto expert Chequan Laosi (@chequanlaosi) stressed that motorists inspect the engine closely after the light appears on their dash in a recent clip on TikTok.

"If the light on the instrument panel comes on suddenly while driving — stop and inspect now!" Laosi exclaimed.

He continued that if the engine fault light is on steady, not flashing, and there's nothing abnormal with the vehicle while driving, there may not be as serious an issue with the car as drivers might think.

In fact, the light could have appeared for a mistake as simple as filling the gas tank with the wrong grade.

"It's likely that the gasoline you put in is of poor quality," the auto pro noted.

Gas stations typically offer three options — regular, mid-grade, and premium, per the US Department of Energy.

The amount of octane "measures of fuel stability," meaning the higher it is, the better the engine should be able to perform.

Many car manufacturers nowadays recommend that drivers use premium or mid-grade gasoline in their vehicles.

Replacing the lower-grade gasoline with a higher grade at the next fill-up will likely resolve the issue, but drivers shouldn't take the car in for repairs to get rid of the engine light, per Laosi.

"They'll let you change the oil, ignition coils, spark plugs, even clean the entire car oil circuit — it will cost you hundreds of dollars," the mechanic said.

Instead, he explained that a simple adjustment could be made to the engine's battery to reset the engine fault without having to go into the auto shop.

"You just need to find the battery in the engine compartment," Laosi noted, opening the hood of the vehicle and locating it based on the labeled positive and negative charge signs.

"The plus sign is the positive pole, the minus sign is the negative pole," he said.

The auto influencer told drivers to grab a wrench and remove the negative side while the vehicle is turned off for at least 10 seconds.

"And then install it back — be sure to tighten the screws," Laosi stressed.

Afterward, the reset should work when the driver restarts the car, with the engine fault light disappearing from the dash.

Laosi claimed that this adjustment is the only way motorists can ensure there was nothing abnormal with the vehicle.

If the check engine light remains on and glowing after the battery reset, there may be underlying issues.

In that case, heading in for repairs is the best decision.

"If the fault light does not go off at this time — go to the repair shop," the mechanic said.

For more on vehicle maintenance, check out The U.S. Sun's coverage of what a mechanic expert of 20 years says are the red flags motorists need to check for when taking their car in for repairs.

The U.S. Sun also has the story on a mechanic's tip to clean a car's air filter in just 30 seconds.