Why Is My Check Engine Light On?

check engineThe mysterious “check engine” light can mean a whole host of different things. Unfortunately, because there isn’t always one, clear problem when the “check engine” light appears, many car owners choose to ignore it until the problem reveals itself in other ways. The check engine light can indicate everything from minor problems to severe ones, and should be addressed as soon as possible when illuminated.

If your check engine light is on, there is a good chance (but not guaranteed) that the problem is one of the following:

Your oxygen sensor needs to be replaced. Your oxygen sensor measures how much unburned oxygen is in vehicles exhaust system, and without replacing it, your car may burn more fuel than needed and cause damage to your spark plugs and catalytic converter.

Your gas cap is loose, damaged, or missing. Your gas cap helps maintain pressure within the fuel tank by sealing the fuel system. Without it, you’ll lose fuel through evaporation.

Your catalytic converter needs replaced. The catalytic converter can be damaged when you neglect replacing your oxygen sensor, your Mass Airflow Sensor, or spark plugs and wires. The catalytic converter turns carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide. Without replacing it, your car won’t pass an emissions test and will run at a higher temperature and less efficiently.

Your Mass Airflow Sensor needs to be replaced. The MAF measures the amount of air entering the engine and determines how much fuel is needed to run the engine. Besides reducing efficiency and performance, MAF sensors that need to be replaced can cause damage to the spark plugs, O2 sensors, and the catalytic converter.

Your spark plugs or wires need replacing. Just like the MAF, spark plugs and wires that need to be replaced cause the vehicle to run at a lower efficiency and can cause damage to the O2 sensor, catalytic converter, or ignition coils.

If your check engine light is on, don’t wait to make an appointment at Gossett Kia Mt Moriah!

Caring for Your Car’s Paint

2014 Kia Soul
Keep your new Soul looking fresh!

Whether your car is brand new or old news, protecting your car’s paint is integral to keeping it looking well-taken care of and new for as long as possible. Your car’s paint takes the brunt of the elements – from the salt associated with winter to the harmful UV rays of summer – so don’t skimp when it comes to caring for your car’s paint.

UV protection. Luckily, the paint on your new car is designed to take on the sun’s harsh UV rays. Modern cars are finished with a coating designed to resist the effects of UV rays, including dulling and cracking the paint – and they work. You don’t need to lose sleep at night over this one, unless you regularly park your car directly in the hot sunshine all day, every day. When you can, do yourself (and your car) a favor and park in the protection of shade – whether that’s a tree or a parking garage.

Wax. Find a wax you really like and make sure to take the time to wax your car twice a year (before and after the winter months, at a minimum). Wax acts as a protectant, creating a barrier between the elements and your car’s paint. It also helps to bring out the full richness and color of your car’s paint, revitalizing it to like-new quality.

Wash. Regular car washes are a must for anyone hoping to preserve their vehicle’s paint. The longer dirt, debris, salt, and bugs sit on your car, the more likely it is to begin eroding the paint. Make sure you use fresh water, clean rags, and mild soap to keep your car clean.

Avoid. Do your best to avoid situations that may lead to an unnecessary dent or scratch (duh, right?).  But seriously, you should park away from other cars in parking lots, don’t let your kids ride their tricycles around the car, and so forth.

For more information on car paint, visit drivetime.com.

Here at Gossett Kia, we hope this helpful guide offers peace-of-mind and a few helpful tips. Basic car care and common sense will help keep your car looking like new for years to come!