To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Mechanic reveals 'truth' about dashboard light drivers tend to ignore

Mechanic reveals 'truth' about dashboard light drivers tend to ignore

Mechanic Scotty Kilmer has some controversial advice.

Picture the scene - you’re happily driving along when all of a sudden, a little orange light pipes up on your dashboard and absolutely ruins your day.

The 'check engine' light can fill even the most seasoned drivers with absolute dread, and what’s worse is no one’s really sure what you should do about it, especially if it turns off all by itself after a while.

One motorist wrote on X: “Why would your car check engine light turn on for a few days (after a torrential downpour) and then just turn off a few days later. No signs of anything being wrong.”

Many motorists tend to react to the dreaded dashboard light by just burying their head in the sand and hoping it won't be too much of a financial hit.

The dreaded check engine light.
Getty Stock Images/Ivan Las Heras

One said: “Me pretending I don’t see the check engine light turn on every time I start my car.”

And another celebrated: “Check engine light is off after 5 months.”

So what are you actually meant to do if you spot the warning light?

Should you head straight for a mechanic? Expect your car to break down any second? Or just hope desperately it goes away?

Well, one mechanic claims to have the ‘truth’ about the check engine light - and it’s a little controversial.

Scotty Klein, a YouTuber and mechanic of over 56 years who previously shared one warning sign that means you need to sell your used car immediately, has a message for concerned drivers.

What is the 'truth' behind this warning light?

Explaining what the check engine light means, he said: “Just realise that the computer is always checking your car and if it finds a problem exists, it will turn the check engine light on.

So maybe... don't panic, then.
Getty Stock Image

“But if while driving it turns it off and it comes on again later, it’s finding a problem that is a minor problem, and I would not worry about it until it becomes more serious.

“I have seen people spend thousands of dollars trying to track down a problem in their car, when instead if they would have waited weeks, months or even years for the problem to actually get big enough, rather than spend money on parts that did not even fix the problem because they were just guessing.

“Yes, sometimes patience is a virtue, even with check engine lights.”

Scotty Kilmer has spoken.
YouTube/Scotty Kilmer

For the more technically minded, Kilmer demonstrated in the video how he plugged a scan tool into the OBD port, checked what codes displayed, then erased them, went for a drive and checked if they came back.

If they don’t, it’s not a serious problem.

What is the RAC's take on it?

Now, while Kilmer’s words may be music to your ears, the RAC has a less laissez faire attitude to the check engine light - although I suppose that’s hardly surprising.

They write on their website: “When the engine management light is illuminated it’s often accompanied by tell-tale signs that the engine is not working properly, such as a lack of power or stuttering as you press the accelerator.

“This light could indicate a number of faults, from minor issues like a broken electrical sensor to a much larger mechanical issue, like a fault with your emission control system or catalytic converter.

“If the check engine light comes on you should get it checked as soon as you can, as by continuing to drive you risk causing further, potentially irreparable damage to your engine.”

Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Images

Topics: Cars, Driving