Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: My indicator light goes on when I turn on the engine even after checking a 4 month old gas cap.

asked by on

Does this mean I need a new engine? I have noticed when I park after 25 min of driving home I will walk in front of my van and smell a light burnt smell. This has been a very good van to me for all these years. I've serviced it when it needs service, but now that it is going on 200,000 miles. Last night, my malfunction indicator turned on when I turned the engine on and turned off only when I turn key off. Light does not flash. It just stays on while driving. I bought a new gas cap 4 months ago because a gas fuel light went on. I checked the gas cap to make sure it was ok so I took it off and put it on and still the light turned on when I turned the ignition on.

My car has 198000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

The check engine light is only an indicator letting you know a problem is detected in the computer systems of the vehicle. You would need to have the computer scanned to get the codes that are stored and have the code or codes diagnosed by a mechanic like one from YourMechanic. The mechanic will scan the computer using a tester and then diagnose the problem for you. Then you can make a decision to do the repairs that would be needed. It is possible a gas cap was left loose and caused the light to come on but there are many possible reasons the light is turned on and codes set.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  • Home
  • Questions
  • My indicator light goes on when I turn on the engine even after checking a 4 month old gas cap.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: My car is over heating. It doesn't take long for it to over heat till it is smoking and I have to turn the car off.

There are a couple of possibilities for such a rapid overheating situation. The thermostat may have failed in the "closed" position preventing the hot water from circulating and cooling in the radiator. The water pump or the serpentine drive belt...

Q: Bad VCT solenoids

If you believe that your VCT solenoids or cam phasers are inoperative, I would recommend having them tested and replaced as necessary by a qualified professional in order to resolve this issue. If these parts have truely failed, it is...

Q: RPM increasing but car won't drive

What you are describing may be a result of a faulty speed sensor, potentially low transmission fluid or a even a faulty transmission control solenoid. As your vehicle travels down the road, the computer analyzes data being sent by vehicle...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.