The Dreaded Check Engine Light – Not Always What it Seems

Check Engine Lights

The Dreaded Check Engine Light – Not Always What it Seems

It’s what nightmares are made of.  You’re late on your way to work one morning, stuck on the bumper-to-bumper overpass and guzzling coffee to calm your nerves when, out of nowhere, you notice something glowing among the dials on the dash.

It’s not a usual light, not one you recall seeing before.  The symbol is strange, its glow somewhat ominous…

But panic may be premature.  What appears to be the dreaded “Check Engine” light may, in fact, be a comparatively harmless “Service Engine” light.  But how are you to tell them apart when, in some cars, they may be the same light altogether?  Other cars may even tell you in plain English, “Service Engine Soon.”

In this matter, as in many others, the distinction is best left to the experts.  With over two decades of experience, Brad Duffy of Duffy’s Garage certainly qualifies as one of those experts.

The Devil (May Be) in the Details

Before driving your European car into a wooded area and throwing away the keys, surrendering it and whatever repair costs to nature itself, you might want to make sure you actually understand what the issue is.

While the “Check Engine” bogeyman of old still lives on in our minds, in reality the issue may be as simple as changing your oil.  That said, no car is immune from more serious issues, and even if it seems alright, there may be something lurking underneath your hood that needs addressing.

In some older model vehicles (and even a few newer ones) the “Check Engine” light can have a couple of different meanings.  In some vehicles, when the “Check Engine” light stays steadily lit, it may indicate a less serious, though still worthwhile, problem.

If the “Check Engine” light is flashing, however, you may be in dire straits.

Still, with the sheer variety of lights, symbols, warnings, blinking bulbs, and digital screens, it can still be anyone’s guess what exactly the light means.  And if you’re taking your vehicle in for regular maintenance at a half-dozen different locations, you may be aiding and abetting the guessing game.

One Garage, One Technician, Zero Guessing

While taking your troubled vehicle to the nearest “garage of the week” may seem the most convenient option, servicing your car at a half-dozen garages and with a different mechanic each time is like never seeing the same doctor twice.

Your car has a history.  It has quirks and oddities and small issues developed as it’s driven, where it’s driven, and how it’s driven.  In essence, each vehicle is a reflection of its owner’s individuality, a fingerprint unlike any other.

At Duffy’s Garage, your vehicle’s history—every note ever written, every suggested and applied repair, every regularly scheduled visit—are recorded and consulted.  Far from a stranger, your car is like a trusted old friend to the experts at Duffy’s Garage.

When your car tells you in no uncertain terms to “Check” or “Service” your engine, don’t look for answers in the stars or in a chain of unfamiliar mechanics.  You and your car are welcome back to Duffy’s anytime.

A Relationship on All Fronts

At their newly opened location in Birmingham’s happening Avondale neighborhood, Duffy’s garage is the kind of place you and your car will want to return to again and again.  With vaulted ceilings, arcade games, and some deep couches parked in front of a couple of wide TVs, both driver and vehicle can relax in the knowledge that they’re being taken care of.

Not every mystery deserves to be indulged.  Some just need solving.  At Duffy’s Garage, you’ll find less sleuthing, more solving, and all while having a better, more refined maintenance experience.

Duffy’s Garage, the “dealership alternative,” repairs, and services European luxury cars such as BMW, Audi, Mercedes, and Land Rover. Voted “Birmingham’s Best Auto Mechanic” by Birmingham Magazine for five years, they designed their shop as an all in one service center with the central idea being a focus on customer service. Cozy waiting rooms, restaurant shuttles at lunch, a pool table, and top-notch auto repair by experienced technicians are the hallmark of Duffy’s Garage’s new location in Avondale, Alabama (formerly in downtown Birmingham).  Reach out to them today at 205-715-2100 or drop them a note at this link.