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.

A: Hello Sir, From the symptoms you describe ...

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

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: I got oil changed n they told me I had metal in oil n two major oil leaks I got the car sept 24 from jd by rider of Greenville bk

Hello. Metal shavings or pieces in the oil pan can be a serious sign of major mechanic failure on the horizon. Did you personally see the metal shavings? Do you trust that this was an honest diagnosis? If so then...

Q: P0500 Vehicle Speed Sensor A

Hi there, thanks for writing in. The reason you are having issues finding the sensor is because the vehicle speed information for you model is sent from the Antilock Brake System module. You will need a higher end diagnostic...

Q: engine will not start now, after repairs first to the transmission, then alternator and new battery and last, a new fuel pump

If all the other problems started to happen after the transmission was removed and rebuilt, I would suspect that a wire harness has not been connected good or got pinned between the engine and transmission. I would also look for...

Related articles

How to Renew Your Car Registration in Oklahoma(DELETED)
Having your car registered with the Oklahoma Tax Commission is an important part of driving legally in this state. You will need to do this within 30 days of moving to Oklahoma...
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.