All Car Specialists San Gabriels Best
Auto Repair Shop is
a Free Check Engine Trouble light code read out.
Stop by and have Paul Brow at All Car Specialists read your Check
Engine Trouble Code to help you determine what your car needs.
It is important that you understand that
your Check and Service Engine lights serve an important purpose in
helping you keep your car running soundly and safely and avoid
potential expensive repairs when often a regular or specific
Maintenance would fix the problem. In another Valuable Consumer
Automotive Repair and Maintenance Article from Paul Brow, see why
this is important!
Free Trouble Code Inspection
Check Engine Light and Service Engine Soon Code Check
Both the Check Engine and Service Engine
Soon lights are usually found in the lower to middle part of the
dasboard near the gauges and speedometer, as shown in the
Important Understanding of the Engine Light Functions
Your auto's Check Engine Light, or sometimes referred to as the
Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), is associated wtih modern day
computerized engines and can be an indicator of something needed
attention in the computerized engine management system. They are
often and commonly referred to as 'Trouble Codes'. When illuminated,
it is typically either an amber or red color. On vehicles equipped
with OBD-II, the light has two stages: steady (indicating a minor
fault such as a loose gas cap or failing oxygen sensor) and flashing
indicating a severe fault, that could potentially damage the
catalytic converter if left uncorrected for an extended period.
lit, the engine control unit stores a fault code related to the
malfunction, which mechanics can retrieve with Scan Technology and
used for further diagnosis. In some makes and models, the code
diagnosis maybe retrieved without a scan tool, but every make and
model is different. The malfunction indicator lamp usually is stated
as check engine, service engine soon, or in a few instances an Icon
of an engine. Currently, in the United States, specific functions
are required of the MIL by EPA regulations.
The MIL first
appeared in the early 80s along with computerized engine controls.
On cars older than 1980, there was no such indicator but instead had
a single indicator labeled "trouble" or "engine"; this was not a
MIL, but what was often referred to as an "idiot light" meant to
indicate possible serious trouble with the engine (low oil pressure,
overheating, or charging system problems) and an imminent breakdown.
Initially these lights were designed to go off, or illuminate, at
the beginning of a problem instead of after serious problems went on
The "idiot light" terminology arises from popular
frustration with automakers' use of tell-tales for crucial functions
which could previously be monitored by gauges, so a troublesome
condition could be detected and corrected in the early stages, not
after the fact. Such early detection of problems with, for example,
engine temperature or oil pressure or charging system operation is
not possible via a tell-tale, which usually illuminates only once a
fault has already occurred – thus providing no advance warnings or
details of the malfunction's extent.
reality, the simple idiot lights were a cheaper way to include
gauges and not nearly as valuable or important as actual read-out
gauges, which should be installed in all cars. Even the most
uneducated individual can quickly learn the proper levels their car
should be reading thereby giving the opportunity to correct a
problem before it worsened, a simple engine light, does not provide
for such any early detection. An auto well equipped with Gauges
goes a long way to help see a potential problem before it gets to
that point. That is one reason why many of those with High
Performance autos have a full array of actual 'read-out gauges' that
actually provide the levels for each function in real time. This
usage of the "engine" light was discontinued in the mid-1980s, to
prevent confusion with the MIL. The MIL is commonly referred to
today as the "check engine light" or the "service engine soon
light", however, many cars today have both. Usually in this case the
Service Engine light is more of a servicing notice, for example time
to change your oil.
All Car Specialists is also a
AAA Star Smog Center for both Test and
Automatic Transmission Maintenance and Servicing Tip Video from
Gale's Friend - Paul,
and see another reason why AAA rates All Car Specialists at the Top.
On-board diagnostics (OBD) is an automotive term referring to a
vehicle's self-diagnostic and reporting capability.
OBD systems give the vehicle owner or repair technician access to
the status of the various vehicle subsystems. The amount of
diagnostic information available via OBD has varied widely since its
introduction in the early 1980s versions of on-board vehicle
computers. Early versions of OBD would simply illuminate a
malfunction indicator light or "idiot light" if a problem was
detected, but would not provide any information as to the nature of
the problem. Modern OBD implementations such as All Car Specialists
untilze, use a standardized digital communications port to provide
real-time data in addition to a standardized series of diagnostic
trouble codes, or DTCs points the technician in the direction of the
malfunction within the vehicle. Look at it like a Compass in the
desert, it will give you a basic direction of the best way to head.
OBD-II diagnostic check OBD-II provides access to
information from the engine control unit (ECU) and offers a valuable
source to assist with troubleshooting problems inside a vehicle. You must understand that good Damage Control efforts can
prevent a lot of needless expense.
While the actual schedule of car maintenance varies
depending on the year, make, and model of a car, van, suv or truck,
as well as its driving conditions and driver behavior, Maintenance
can prevent a lot of expense in mechanical repairs later on. Early
and Regular Maintenance cannont be overstated to protect both your
Automobile and your Pocket Book.
Here is a helpful and valuable Check List to go by such as:
- Number of trips and distance traveled per trip per day -
Extreme hot or cold climate conditions - Terrain, example:
mountainous, dusty or de-iced roads - Heavy stop-and-go vs.
long-distance cruising - Towing a trailer or other heavy load
Just remember, constant use on any of the above not only
places extra stress on the engine but on your entire Drive Train and
You can watch one of Paul's Videos on Transmission Maintenance for
futher tips right
in the video in the first column.
Hot Temperatures can affect the Entire Auto's Operating
system. Most people just think that if the engine overheats then
only the engine was affected. This is entirely Wrong. If you have an
automatic transmission it has a coolant line going from the Radiator
to the Transmission that cools the Tranmsission Fluid to keep it
running sound and strong.
service advisors in dealerships and independent shops recommend
schedule intervals, which are often in between the ideal or extreme
service schedule and for good reason. They base it on the driving
conditions and behavior of the car owner or driver. Sure, you may
say, of course they do, they just want your money for extra
business. Well there may be some shops that will tell you that your
car is in need of numerous maintenance items, but not All Car
Specialists. When you come into All Car Paul Brow will only tell you
what he finds is actually in need of maintenance and make
suggestions ONLY on his findings, not on a potential bill he can
right up for you. All Car has a reputation of word of mouth or
referral busines and it has been earned by honesty, integrity and
reliability for 4 decades.
Watch an Introduction and
Important Servicing Tips Video by Paul Brow - Owner All Car
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'The Customer' the 'All Car Advantage!'
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