What Does It Mean?
You are driving on the road, and suddenly out of nowhere, the ‘Service Engine Soon’ light appears on your dashboard.
Now what? What should I do? Do I need to stop my car and have it towed to the garage immediately? Is it worth the expense to have it repaired?
These are just some of the questions you may have.
The service engine soon warning light may not be as hazardous as you think. This article will cover everything about the warning light for service engine soon.
- The Service Engine is Soon to Be Lighted
- Common causes of the Service engine soon light:
- How to respond when there is a Service Engine Soon flashing?
- It came back after I had cleared the Service Engine Soon Light.
- FAQ: Service Engine Coming Soon
The Service Engine is Soon to Be Lighted
The Service engine soon light indicates there is a minor problem with the electronics or your car’s engine. If your car has a minor issue, some manufacturers will use the service engine quickly light rather than the check engine lamp.
This could be a sign that the engine is due for scheduled maintenance, like oil change or replacement of spark plugs. Manufacturers may only provide one indication for engine problems and scheduled service.
Common causes of the Service engine soon light:
You may experience a rare situation where your engine's service light will come on more often than usual. Although this may vary slightly from one car manufacturer to another, the causes of a service engine soon light are usually very similar across car models. These are some of the possible causes for a troubled service engine.
- Minor engine issues like a loose fuel tank cap.
- When to expect a service scheduled.
- Fluids with low levels of oil or coolant (low oil, brake fluid, and so on)
- Emissions issues with minor exhaust
How to respond when there is a Service Engine Soon flashing?
When you are on the road and your ‘Service Engine Soon’ light appears, you will most likely not have any diagnostic tools with you. However, you can still check the common items by the side road when it appears.
- If you do not have your manual, check it to see what your service engine light is.
- All fluids should be checked, including engine oil, brake fluid and automatic transmission fluid (if there is a dipstick).
- Make sure that your fuel tank cap has been tightened correctly.
- You can listen to the engine and hear unusual noises.
- Check your service history manual when your last scheduled service was done and check if it’s time for a service. If you don't have a manual, call your dealer.
If you can’t find any problems, you have to take your car to a workshop to read your vehicle’s trouble code memory. If you own an OBD2 scanner, this can be done at your home. You can read our OBD2 scanner reviews article if you don't have one. For any trouble codes, make sure to check your engine control unit.
Save any codes you get and attempt to find out what the meaning is. To see if your engine maintenance light turns off, you may be able to delete any codes that could indicate an emission problem.
The engine maintenance light will turn on if the code is deleted.
Service Engine Soon light in different colors
You should also be aware that the service engine light may come in different colors.
- Yellow lightMinor issue: Take your vehicle to the workshop, or you can diagnose the problem yourself.
- Red LightMajor issue: You should stop the engine and immediately turn it off. Then, get the vehicle towed to the nearest mechanic shop for inspection.
It came back after I had cleared the Service Engine Soon Light.
All engine controls module tests are performed at every engine ignition after the vehicle has been warmed up. It will tell you if it fails a test more than once. It can sometimes take the engine control unit a while to identify these issues.
It is important to check the Service engine quickly light again if the problem persists.
Electrical problems often can be found immediately, and they don't need to wait for start-up tests. The service engine light will come on again. You need to go back to the trouble code and attempt to solve the problem.
FAQ: Service Engine Coming Soon
Why does the service engine light come on so quickly?
The reason your service engine light turns on is many. Most likely, your vehicle has an engine problem, low fluid levels, or minor emissions issues, depending on its make and model.
Do I have to drive with the service engine light on soon?
Most problems that cause a service engine to fail are not serious and in most cases, they will be fixed quickly. Before you drive, make sure to inspect all fluids. However, we recommend that you repair it as soon possible.
How can I make the service engine light turn on soon?
Most cases will require you to fix the issue that led to the light. It should then disappear on its own. The light will come on if scheduled maintenance is performed. In this case, you can reset the engine with a scanner or an appropriate combination.
Low oil can cause a service engine to light up quickly?
It is possible for the dashboard light of your service engine soon to show up on some car models if there are low engine oils. This could also indicate that the vehicle has other issues, or low fluid levels. Although it's relatively simple to check your oil level, you need to do so.