Audi is a brand which is increasingly popular in the United States. With vehicles that have gorgeous exteriors, a luxury interior, and quality German engineering, it’s not hard to see why. Reliably built and with intelligent design features, it is unlikely that your Audi will ever fail you, so long as you give it the right care and maintenance.
We all know that real life can get in the way and maintenance standards can slip, causing failures and issues to creep up on even the savviest of drivers. In this article, we will explore some of the reasons behind the illumination of the check engine light on the dash of your Audi.
What is the check engine light?
Found on your Audi’s dashboard, the check engine light is part of your car’s OBD (Onboard Diagnostic) system. When the OBD notes an issue with the engine or the engine’s related systems, it will illuminate the check engine light to signal to the driver to check for potential faults. Therefore, it goes without saying that the illumination of the check engine light shouldn’t be ignored.
Why is the check engine light illuminated?
There can be many reasons why the OBD illuminates the check engine light. Listed below are the most common causes, but there may also be alternative reasons specific to the make and model of your car.
1. Loose Gas Cap
This is the most simple cause for check engine light illumination on this list. The check engine light can often have drivers worrying about some serious issue within their car, but this light can actually be illuminated down to the simple driver error of not reinserting the gas cap properly. If the gas cap is incorrectly fitted, then it doesn’t make the tight seal as intended. This allows fuel vapors to leak out. It can cause the OBD to assume a problem and illuminate the check engine light. So if this warning light illuminates and you’ve refueled recently, it’s worth checking the gas cap first before taking your Audi into the shop for diagnostics.
2. Issues With the Oxygen Sensor
The oxygen sensor of your Audi plays a key role in ensuring the catalytic converter works properly. An oxygen sensor can fail due to contaminants or even just time and use. If the check engine light illuminates for this reason, then you’ll need to seek repairs from a qualified mechanic.
3. Problems with the Spark Plugs
Spark plugs are essential for igniting the air/fuel mixture in your engine, and if they fail to spark correctly, the fuel won’t ignite properly, resulting in misfires and driving problems which can cause the check engine light to illuminate. Spark plugs should be serviced or replaced after every 25,000 miles. So if its been a while since you’ve had your plugs serviced, it is likely that this is the root cause of the warning light.
4. MAF Sensor
If the Mass Airflow (MAF) sensor is faulty, then the check engine light might illuminate. This can indicate an issue with the filters or the sensor itself and can be accompanied with low fuel efficiency and increased emissions. If this is the case, you’ll need to bring your Audi to the shop for diagnostic procedures.
5. Catalytic Converter
Issues with the catalytic converter is the worst case scenario as to why the check engine light has illuminated. If the converter has failed, then your car will be in very poor health. Sadly, it is likely your wallet will be poor too, as a replacement can be notoriously expensive.
The catalytic converter is essential to the safe operation of your Audi. Its important role is to convert toxic fumes from ignited fuel into safer emissions, which are then released through the exhaust. The converter both protects the environment as well as the people around you. If you suspect your converter has failed, it is your responsibility to seek repairs asap.
Seeking Repairs at Germany’s Best, Inc.
If your check engine light illuminates and you are not sure why, then you should seek diagnostic help from a qualified mechanic at Germany’s Best, Inc. as soon as possible. If you live in or around Berkeley, Emeryville, Piedmont, or Oakland, CA, then you should make Germany’s Best, Inc. your first stop. We specialize in German automobiles. Germany’s Best knows just what it takes to have your Audi performing at its optimum level.