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Understanding BMW’S Check Engine Light

What You Can Do

Nothing generates more stress and questions than your BMW’s check engine light. Designed to inform you of problems that are going on within your vehicle, it fails to let you know what the specific problem is. This has caused thousands of drivers to ask questions such as “is my vehicle safe to drive?” and “is my car going to break down?”

Although knowing what to do once the light is on can be tricky, there are a few hints it gives you that should point you in the right direction. The next time you see the check engine light in your BMW vehicle, keep these tips in mind!

Color of the Light

In many BMW models, the check engine light will inform you of the severity of the problem. The next time you see the light, pay attention to how the icon is colored. If it’s an orange/amber color, that indicates a minor problem going on in your vehicle and you won’t notice a huge change in the way your vehicle performs. If you see a red color, that means there is a serious problem with your vehicle and you should stop driving to prevent further damage.

Along with those colors, BMW also has a third indicator that has half of the check engine light colored. This means a serious problem within your vehicle has forced the engine to go into limp mode, which protects the vehicle from permanent damage. Please stop driving your vehicle as soon as you notice this.

Check the Gas Cap

If the light is an amber/orange color, the first thing you should check is your vehicle’s gas cap. Yes, something as minor as a loose gas cap can trigger the check engine light. When inspecting the cap, make sure that it’s tightened or replaced. Gas caps come cheap at most auto parts stores, just make sure that you purchase the right one for your vehicle, as not all caps are the same.

Once the cap has been tightened or replaced, drive your vehicle for a few miles and wait to see if its computer system picks up your adjustment. If so, the light should shut off. It not, then there’s another issue with your vehicle that will require professional help.

Schedule a Diagnostic Service

For the check engine light to properly turn off, your vehicle must be serviced by professionals with the proper diagnostic equipment available and the skill to handle a wide variety of repairs. At Central Import, we’re the BMW service shop you and your vehicle have been looking for. Give us a call and schedule your engine light diagnostics service today! We’ll quickly discover what caused the check engine light to trigger and perform the necessary repairs so you don’t have to deal with this stressful light any longer!