Is It Safe to Drive With Check Engine Light on? (What’s the Harm?)

Photo of author
Written By Nicklaus Frost

Last Updated on: 3rd July 2022, 05:43 pm

If the check engine light appears when we start driving, it becomes a frightening experience. Take some fresh air, and then check the car if it is bucking and creating unusual sounds. Sometimes the check engine light gets on due to a faulty oxygen sensor or a bad MAF sensor. Also, the catalytic converter of your car creates the crap.

The shortcode is- If you see nothing out of the ordinary, it is safe to drive with the check engine light on.

Logically, the check engine light appears for a faulty emissions system. How far can you go with check lights on anyway? You can drive safely until the car doesn’t perform strangely. Please be mindful of consulting a professional to have check engine light checked after reaching a safe place. He’ll repair the problem. You shouldn’t leave the situation without fixing it as it can result in severe damage down the road.

What does check engine light mean?

The check engine is established in a car like onboard diagnostics system. After 1980, the manufacturers made their vehicles computerized to monitor vehicle performance, regulating engine speed, fuel, ignition function, and extra control. Nowadays, a modern car owns a computer that has an automatic transmission to shift.

A computer does not solve some problems. If the vehicle’s computer finds any problem in the electronic control system and can’t solve it, the computer turns the “Check Engine Light” as a yellow warning indicator. When the check engine lights illuminate on your dashboard, it strongly means that you’ll be experiencing something more serious issue such as a misfiring engine, a faulty gas cap, or engine crack.

A blinking light or check engine light continually illuminates in some cars and indicates immediate attention. Such a light indicates a problem that needs a quick fix.

Why is My Check Engine Light On? What’s the harm?

There are many reasons to turn the check engine light on. A loose gas cap triggers the warning the most. Some more significant problems like failed engine components, transmission problems, emissions equipment problems, sensor problems, ignition system problems, and air/fuel problems can be common reasons to turn your check engine light on. Let’s explain them a bit!

What to do if your check engine light comes ON

Engine problems or Engine’s component problems

The engine is the most valuable thing in a vehicle without which we can’t be a driver anymore. If the engine has even little problems, it triggers the check engine light. A control module monitors all engine functions via some sensors. If the module detects a problem, it turns the check light on.

  • Transmission problems

Like the engine’s importance, we can’t deny a transmission’s significance as the transmission manipulates engine power and activates the drive wheels. Without a transmission, it’s impossible to run a vehicle either. A problem with the transmission increases tailpipe emissions also can stop wheels. If the control module of a vehicle detects a transmission problem, it illuminates the malfunction indicator lamp.

  • Emission equipment problems

Today’s vehicles have an exorbitance of emissions equipment through the exhaust gas recirculation system, the catalytic converter, emissions, and tailpipe emissions are reduced. Emissions equipment plays a harmonious role in protecting the environment and takes the world to a safer place. Undoubtedly, an emissions equipment failure can be bad for a car’s activities. Check engine light indicates the failure with constant flickering.

  • Fuel + Air consumption problems

A car’s engine needs proper air and fuel for a long haul run. The portions between air and fuel shouldn’t be too much or too little. If any air or fuel consumption problems happen, the control module will indicate you through a check engine light.

  • Ignition system problems

The ignition system includes the spark plugs, coil packs, and essential fluid to ignite the air + fuel mixture inside the engine. A vehicle’s computer which monetizes ignition system operation and many more system is known as the control module system. If anything happens, such as ignition system problems, the control module turns on the check engine light to warn you.

What to do if your check engine light comes ON

You never can identify the true meaning of an illuminated check engine light until you diagnose the car by a professional. The check light is a warning sign showing if something simple error or something serious happens to your vehicle. You shouldn’t take any chances. Don’t make hesitation in having a professional diagnose after your check engine light comes on. You’re recommended repairing the issue right away.

  • Professional Automotive OBD2 Scanner

Hey, don’t mind! We sponsor this scanner that diagnoses and determines the cause of the Check Engine Light and quickly fixes the troubles codes. This scanner will turn off the Check Engine Light. Now, you don’t have to go to a professional for any easy diagnose. Professionals use the scanner to analyze vehicle’s troubles as efficiently as possible. You’ll be benefited by identifying all power train information of your vehicle through this tool.Professional Automotive OBD2 Scanner


  • A quick look at its works:
  • The OBD2 scanner diagnoses trouble codes
  • Shows current data available
  • Removes DTCs and Freeze Frame Data
  • Controls onboard system, test, and module

Check this must-wanted thing on Amazon.


The check engine light is structured on the car’s onboard diagnostics system, and it lightens up whenever something goes wrong with your vehicle. A vehicle, vehicle’s engine, and engine’s transmission are run with a complex collection of components. These components face many more problems, and they are stored in the electronic control system. Having a professional will indicate the problem and fix the trouble codes. You can check our recommended OBD2 scanner above or go to a certified technician. We never indulge in driving with check lights on! But if you are caught somewhere to come back very soon, you can temporarily drive with a check engine. Then, consult a professional to get your car fixed!

Leave a Comment