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Check Engine light won't turn off!


Stacy's Avatar
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12-11-03, 06:51 AM   #1  
Stacy
check engine light

I have that same problem. I take my car in to have it checked, they run diagnostics, zip-zilch-nada! I did take my car in to have the fuel pump changed-$600.00 later, the light came back on. Next I took it in again, had something else changed (can't remember what it was) $600.00 again, 2 days later that stupid light came back on. Point being, that after 4 initial trips and no free-bee's on checking the stupid thing out, I was told by someone not working there that they never reset the light. Now I don't know if this is true, but at least I didn't have to pay $600.00 for that!!!

 
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12-11-03, 09:36 AM   #2  
Stacy.... Do you have documentation telling you what the codes are or were on your vehicle? Also please post the specifics of your vehicle.
Thanks,
Billy

 
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12-11-03, 09:50 AM   #3  
Stacy
you know, I don't have the diagnostics report, but could probably get it. I'll check into that. And what do you mean by the specifics of my car? Just what type of car?

 
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12-11-03, 09:59 AM   #4  
Year---?
Make---?
Model---?
Engine Size---?
Billy

 
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12-11-03, 10:11 AM   #5  
Stacy
I just called the reputable company that I take my car to, and she told me that they only ran diagnostics on my battery (the car wouldn't stay running) fixed it, (new battery WHOA that was a tough one) and the next day, it stopped running. So I towed it there and then it became the fuel pump. So, that was changed. Upon further inquiry to her about this stupid service engine light, I asked her about my last visit there--had to change the water pump -Guess how much again! Anyway, she told me just now that it sounds like my transmission. Ever since they changed the fuel pump, my car will stall for maybe 2-3 sec. when the accelerator pedal is pushed, or do just the opposite, and the RPM's will flip way up but no acceleration of speed will occur. Maybe I just need to find "the little guy" who can't afford to be wrong too many times-and will strive to fix it right the first time. When I was younger, I used to help some of my friends who raced at the local track work on their cars--transmissions mostly-but I don't remember enough about it. Maybe this company is trying to see just how much they can get me for...what do you think? By the time they're done with me I'll have a completely rebuilt car!! Engine must be next!! Ha Ha The car is a Ford Taurus,1998, V6 (i believe).


Last edited by Stacy; 12-11-03 at 10:35 AM.
 
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12-11-03, 08:41 PM   #6  
Spursfan
woooooooow

Stacy, my friend had a similar problem and if you read the replies in my post, you'll see how I resolved it. My general feeling is after you understand the maintenance and failing rate for essential engine parts, and follow maintenance guidelines, you'll know not to get too alarmed when a light comes on. If you read your owners manual, it'll give a profile of what types of maintenance are needed, and the time that should happen.
As you will read from my post, the check engine light was resolved before a single dime was spent. But we had to exercise patience and also, there were no problems with the car prior to, or after this light, and normal operation was unimpaired(normal gas mileage, no noises, no smoke, no leaks, fluids check, transmission shifts smoothly, maintenance was current, and we had more than one mechanic confirm everything was working fine - at no charge coz I shop for who has specials on free testing!). If you need an engine code read, check our Autozone shops, they give that service. Advance Auto also have free testing for essential parts and I actually confirmed that they will read engine codes for you for free if you request. Thereafter, armed with the codes, you can come here and have the moderators explain them to you. The idea is to save money until you know where to spend it, and what to spend it on! I'm amazed that they were busy fixing things on your car without referencing the codes at the very least! And remember to ask for the light to be reset...my friend drove around for 2 years with that light on...I would never advice that.

 
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12-12-03, 08:11 AM   #7  
Stacy
Thanks for the advice! Where you say "I'm amazed that they were busy fixing things on your car without referencing the codes at the very least! " Yeah, floored me too! They tend to "fix" the car first, then call to let you know what's wrong--AND what else needs to be fixed if I want them to. That sends up a HUGE red flag with the question HOW MUCH IS THAT GONNA COST? They are a highly reputable company but I can't help but question the way that they handle their business. I took the car in another time to have a new motor put in on the door for the power windows and locks, (on a Thursday), and they couldn't get the part until the middle of the next week. So I wanted to take my car until they received the motor. They wanted to charge me to put the door interior back on, recharge me to take it off when the car came back to the shop. I thought that was crap--they were getting the d*** part for me, they knew they had my business. So I put the door interior on myself and brought it back in with the door off. Do you think that this is a common practice for all automotive shops? I hate to switch, but I hate the thought of getting taken. What do you think?

Stacy

 
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12-12-03, 03:32 PM   #8  
Spursfan
Get your move on!!

Girl, after what you said, I would move if I were you. One thing I learnt is that some of these 'huge, corporate/professional' outfits are not really commited to the customer(hence their gloating at year-end when profits are all they care for).I know from experience that reputation is in people's minds and not in these establishments. If they want to be so unscrupulous about your car door(which is their responsiblity since they already accepted the job), then it shows you they really do not care about you as a personal client. Also, the repercussions of a bad job hurt them a lot less than they would Joe Shmoe, the corner mechanic who relies on returning customers. The thing is to find a good mechanic and stick to him. Dealerships and big companies hire people to do a job and they are profit driven. One things you should know about our great civilization is, no one feels sorry for you if they can get you to pay $20 for a 50cent item. It is called capitalism, and painfully they will sell you even what you don't need. From this forum, I have learnt that sometimes having a tad bit knowledge on something will save you hundreds, even thousands of dollars. Ask, ask, ask, ask, and then ask some more. Highlight of the message, it's time you moved.

 
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12-12-03, 04:58 PM   #9  
Sounds to me that their reputation is quite tarnished. Time to find another shop. Not all shops are like that. Unfortunately there are alot that are. You will just have to shop around. Dealerships are NOT entirely profit driven. Yes they, as well as the independents, are in the business for the bottom line, but it really depends on the management. If the manager is greedy then it reflects poorly on the entire shop and unfortunately the mechanic.
Hope things work out for ya,
Billy

 
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12-12-03, 07:34 PM   #10  
Stacey so you understand about the door motor.The man who checked your car was paid to diagnose the problem and it entailed removing the door panel.If under warranty he only gets paid to change the part and reinstall the panel,about lets say 1 hour.If he puts the panel back on and has to take it back off to replace the motor he gets paid 1 hour.If you are paying(customer pay)you will pay 2 hours labor for the panel being removed twice.Extended warranty works the same.Technicians for the most part are not paid by the hour.They are paid flatrate by times someone else made up to save companies money.I will give you an example if I am given a repair order that says vibration at 60 mph and it takes me 10 minutes to get to a road that allows that speed,I spend 5 minutes on that road and 10 minutes back.I have used 25 minutes and get paid .3 (3 tenths of 1 hour)18 minutes.Seems I lost 7 minutes pay before I get started.That is why the technician didn't want to replace the door panel.

 
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12-16-03, 11:10 PM   #11  
charleejo
check engine light

i had a vehicle's check engine lite come on. i was told by a mechanic that they r set to come on at certain mileage intervals by the manufacturer so that u will take to the dealership and see what they can get out of u. it was a suzuki samurai. this one happened to be at 50,000 mi. and it would probably come back on at 100,000 mi. he checked the car out and said "just turn it off". there was nothing wrong. 13 yrs later, i'm still driving the car and it runs great!
now tho i have a 95 cadillac, 103,000 mi. and the darn lite just came on. i've had the engine gone thru 2 times at the dealership and they report no problems. the light is still on tho
i noticed one of the replies to ur question said that he didn't advise leaving it on. do u know what can happen if the light isn't reset?

 
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12-17-03, 04:30 AM   #12  
charleejo.....There are 2 different lights. One is Check Engine, Service Engine Soon, or just the outline of an engine either by itself or with the word CHECK in the center. There may be a couple of other designs that I cant remember at the moment. Then theres the Maintenance light. This light comes in many forms. It is usually the words "Maint Req'd". Again this depends on the vehicle. Some cars dont have any words, but a light bar that changes color as the maintenance interval nears. Volkswagen and BMW come to mind with this design. OK, the Maintenance light is the ONLY light designed to come on at a specific interval. The Check/Service Engine light WILL NOT do this. If this light is on then there is a problem. And yes it is not good to just ignore it and leave the light on! A damaged/failed component turns the light on, if the component is not repaired/replaced then the computers variables change and damage to other components can and will occur. The 95 Cadillac you mentioned has one of the simplest diagnostic systems. Pretty much whatever it says is bad, IS! Unlike todays OBDII system where there are literaly dozens of things that will set the same code.
Again if it is a maintenance light then it just means you have missed a service interval and/or not had the light reset by a competent technician.
Hope this clears things up for ya,
Billy

 
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