When your check engine light comes on, it means that your car's computer diagnostic system has detected a fault in one of its sensors. This particular warning light covers dozens of different issues, some as innocuous as the gas cap not being properly secured. However, if your check engine light comes on, it's still recommended to come in for assessment immediately. Even a tiny leak or flaw detected early can quickly grow to something damaging and expensive over a short period of time.
If your check engine light begins flashing, the issue is much more serious. Pull your vehicle to a safe area to park away from traffic, and call for a tow truck or roadside assistance.
My car's performance has been reducing lately and I'm getting reduced fuel efficiency. What does this mean?
Like with failing health, there are a number of factors that can lead to your vehicle losing its usual feel or performance levels. That's why a good general indicator of your vehicle's well-being is its engine's idle. Sometimes a gradual loss of performance just happens naturally over time; but most often it's a sign that one of the systems is damaged or dirty. From worn belts, clogged filters, or a dirty fuel system, it's best to bring your vehicle in for service before its condition worsens. Sudden drops in performance or fuel efficiency should be investigated immediately.