Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Not sure if I messed up my engine

asked by on

I bought a car from a used car lot last year. As soon as I got it home the check engine light went on. Haven't had any major issues until today. I was getting to a stop light when i felt my car kind of sputtering, kind of like it was going to turn off. And thr check engine light was now blinking. When I got home i checked the oil. Well, it was pretty much bone dry! The check oil light never went on and I've been very busy with work this month that I hadn't checked it. I put penzoil oil for high milage vehicles but it's still sputtering. I'm praying I didn't mess the engine up. Any advice is greatly appreciated

My car has 225000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello Sir,

From the symptoms you describe it would not appear to me that you have messed up your engine.

Usually a Check Engine Light that is flashing means that there is a problem with the vehicle that is may cause harm to the emissions system. A flashing Check Engine Light is a sign that certain emissions or smog components, such as oxygen sensors or catalytic converters, may be at risk of serious or permanent damage, and therefore the vehicle should be stopped and serviced as soon as possible, to avoid the further development of any other problems.

You also mention that your oil was low.

While low oil level can definitely cause harm to the engine, it will not usually cause the Check Engine Light to flash or the vehicle to sputter. A problem that can cause the Check Engine Light to flash however, can definitely cause the symptoms you are experiencing.

I would recommend keeping the oil topped off at the proper level, and having the Check Engine Light diagnosed as soon as you can, before any of the smog components become damaged.

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

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: Using oil blend on a car that requires synthetic oil

Looking at the information for your vehicle, it does not say that synthetic oil is required. Using a synthetic blend will be just fine. You can also switch back and forth between synthetic and non-synthetic without doing any damage. If...

Q: Clunk sound when I set on reverse and when I let go of gas pedal. Rattle noise has been increasing over bumps.

Hi there. Sounds like one or both CV Shafts are loose and are moving when you put the transmission in gear. Plus the squeaking noise is from the disk brakes system on the front as they are being forced to...

Q: Car starts, dashboard lights flicker, air conditioning shuts off

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1993 Isuzu Pickup. It sounds like a bad ground in the instrument panel circuit. Looking at the wiring diagram, I see the AC heater control panel and instrument cluster share the same...

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...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.