No check engine light but codes?

The problem that triggered the code may not have happened enough times to illuminate the light. This most likely means the issue is not critical and that the code is pending. So if the check engine light is off, but you see an error code, use an OBD2 scanner to help identify what the problem is.

  • One main reason that a check engine light comes on with no code being stored is that there is a software error. This is often the result of something being wrong with the OBD reader that the driver, parts store, or mechanic shop is using. Most frequently, the software errors stem from a low-level OBD reader being used.

Can a car have codes without check engine light?

In short, yes; it’s possible to diagnose a problem with a vehicle even if the check engine light does not illuminate. A professional mechanic would start by downloading any error codes store in your 2005 Ford Explorer’s computer.

Is it bad to have no check engine light?

Bad idea. The light is an indicator that there’s something wrong with your vehicle. “The system is telling you that something has failed and will immediately cause damage to your vehicle that will be costly to repair.” Ignoring your check engine light could result in immediate car problems or deterioration over time.

Will a code go away on its own?

If the condition that caused it to come on is a minor fault, and stops occurring, then yes, it will clear itself. If the condition indicates a larger problem, then it will stay on until cleared manually. A good example of a condition that will clear itself, is low brake fluid.

Will any OBD2 Scanner work on my car?

It still functions well, but the scanner can only do what the manufacturer designed it to do. These typically can’t be upgraded with new software to expand functionality. The professional scanners that mechanics use typically connect to your car with a wire. The can do practically anything that OBD2 will let them.

How long do I have to drive to reset OBD?

So why is the light still on? Here’s something you probably don’t know: after clearing the car’s computer you will need to drive for about 50 to 100 miles. As you drive your car the computer will monitor all the sensors and register the results.

How many miles can I drive with check engine light on?

When the check engine light is solid, you can typically drive the car for hundreds of miles without an issue. Of course, that depends on which code is stored in the vehicle’s computer. If an engine sensor is faulty, the car will usually use made up sensor values to keep running.

Can I drive my car with engine management light on?

A flashing engine management light is usually also amber and, again, lets you know that there’s a potential issue with your car that you should have looked at as soon as possible. It’s safe to continue driving so you can continue your journey and book your car in to your local garage as soon as you can.

How important is a check engine light?

A flashing check engine light indicates a major internal failure and requires immediate attention. Regardless, do not ignore the check engine light. Continuing to drive with a non-flashing but illuminated check engine light can result in lower fuel economy and eventually lead to more significant and costly repairs.

How long after oil change will check engine light go off?

Removing and fitting the cap correctly, or seating the dipstick will fix the issue. The engine light may not go out immediately, but likely will within three engine start cycles.

How long is an engine cycle?

Always refer to your vehicle service manual or a professional mechanic who has access to the exact drive cycle instructions — and follow them to ensure accuracy. In most cases, a correct drive cycle will take no longer than 15 minutes to complete.

How long does it take for a car computer to reset itself?

The car’s internal computer only resets after a set period where it checks all of its sensors once more. The reset can happen automatically after around 10 to 20 cycles. A cycle is a phase where you turn on the car and turn it off again. For other vehicles, you’ll have to drive around 50 to 100 miles before it resets.

What is the difference between OBD and OBD2?

1. OBD1 is connected to the console of a car, while OBD2 is remotely connected to the vehicle. 2. OBD1 was used during the earlier years of the car manufacturing industry, while OBD2 was only introduced in car models produced in the early 1990’s.

Is OBD reader universal?

OBD scanners are universal and will read generic fault codes. Some vehicles, however, use both generic and manufacturer-specific fault codes. Many of the manufacturer-specific codes may not be read by a basic universal type OBD scanner.

Can you drive with OBD plugged in?

Absolutely, sometimes it is required. Some insurance company’s offer an obdII device that stays plugged in all the time and sends them information about your style of driving.

Check Engine Light Is On But No Codes- What Should You Do?

Do you have a Check Engine light on but no code to read? There are a variety of possible explanations for why this is occurring. There are still a variety of methods to determine why the light came on, what the real problem is, and what needs to be done to correct it, ranging from mechanical to computer to old equipment to name a few. Examine what to do in no-code circumstances, as well as the actions you may take to avoid such situations from occurring again in the future. The check engine light is on and flashing.

Is there nothing wrong?

The short answer is that if your check engine light is illuminated, even if no code is issued, then there is a problem with your vehicle’s engine. The check engine light is on because the vehicle is releasing emissions that are greater than those required by the Environmental Protection Agency, which is why it is illuminated. A large number of readers and scanners are programmed to just read and scan generic OBDII codes. Most car manufacturers also have their own OEM codes, which certain Readers and Scanners are unable to interpret due to a lack of conversion capability.

If all else fails, take the issue to a parts store, where they should be able to read it at no charge to you.

In fact, when the indicator is illuminated, the chances are just as high that something has been incorrect for a long period of time even if no code is created.

Software issue in the ODB reader

One of the most common reasons that a check engine light illuminates but no code is saved is because there has been a software mistake. This is frequently the consequence of a problem with theOBD reader that the driver, parts store, or maintenance shop is employing at the time. The majority of the time, the software issues are caused by the usage of a low-level OBD reader. It’s possible that it’s an ancient model or one that was created in another nation. Or perhaps it’s simply not very compatible with a particular make or model of automobile (although this is rare).

Check Engine Light No Code: What To Do

Before you become very concerned about what is going on with your vehicle, take a time to recall any recent auto maintenance that has taken place. What if you just purchased the automobile a short time ago; would it have to go through an emissions test at the DMV before it could be registered? If this is the case, have a look at the emissions report you received the same day. There may be hints as to whether anything was on the verge of breaking or if something had just just passed the test. What exactly is the difference between obd1 and obd2?

As a rule, the shop will leave notes on any recommended impending maintenance as well as any issues that they have detected that may become more problematic in the future, should they arise.

Even in the worst-case situation, recall the person who sold you the automobile.

You may not be able to purchase the vehicle from the seller if the seller is concerned that the vehicle will not pass an emissions test.

Situations like these are extremely unusual — yet they have occurred. As a result, you’ll need to take your vehicle to a repair and have them reset the ECM system. During this procedure, the technician should be able to determine what caused the light to illuminate in the first place.

Preventing No Codes From Happening In The Future

What is the cause of my check engine light blinking? A better ODB2 reader is the single most important action you can take to avoid future no codes from appearing with your Check Engine Lights. The most common source of misunderstanding has nothing to do with the vehicle itself; rather, it arises from bad readers. You should look for the finest bluetooth obd2 scanner and select the most appropriate one to locate the code. If there is an issue with code storage in addition to this, your mechanic should be able to detect and correct the problem quite quickly.

The same is true in the case of user mistake.

In most cases, it is just a failure of the equipment or computer.


As you’ve seen, these no-code concerns may be resolved with a little effort. The drivers aren’t completely off the hook, though, because there is a problem with their engine as well. They do not always fail to locate codes because of equipment malfunctions, rather than because of a problem with the additional engine itself. We encourage auto enthusiasts to share our articles on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. This is the most effective method of spreading the news about automobile maintenance.

If you have anything to contribute, please feel free to post a remark below this paragraph.

Check engine light on but no code

Frequently, I get asked this topic, and my response is usually the same: if you have a check engine light on but no code, you are most likely using the incorrect scan tool. Always remember that whenever you have a trouble code saved, you have a check engine light or any other warning light on. Period. It’s finally over.

Why can’t you read the trouble code?

There are many different types of trouble codes. When OBDII was originally used, a ‘generic’ set of powertrain ‘P’ codes was created in order to ensure that the same terminology was used by all automobile manufacturers. P codes for the generic powertrain are five-digit codes that begin with P0001 and end with P0799. So far, everything appears to be in order. However, automobile manufacturers argued that they wanted the flexibility to develop new codes that were peculiar to their products. You would need a high-end scan equipment to read improved issue codes as well as B, C, and U codes.

As a result, the authorities permitted automakers to utilize ‘improved’ powertrain problem codes beginning with P1000 and continuing through P3000.

Following that, automakers desired fault codes that would correspond to specific sub-systems within the vehicle, so they created the Body ‘B,’ Chassis ‘C,’ and digital communications ‘U’ codes, among others.

Most inexpensive scan tools only read generic trouble codes

Because enhanced codes might differ depending on the year, make, and model of a vehicle, scan tool makers must design their products to be capable of reading and translating enhanced codes. Very few code readers and scan programs for the general public are created to this degree of complexity these days. To put it another way, your scan tool is simply incapable of reading improved P, B, C, or U codes. If your check engine light is illuminated, you have a fault code saved in your computer. The same holds true whether your ABS light is illuminated, your TCS light is illuminated, your VSC light is illuminated, and so on.

At this point, you have two options: either purchase a scan tool that can read enhanced codes as well as B, C, and U codes, or pay a store to read the codes for you on the spot.

Rick Muscoplat posted a blog entry on

Check Engine Light Off But Code Still There

Always has that sinking sensation in the pit of your stomach when your check engine light comes on. For many, it entails a trip to the mechanic that has been put off for far too long. Being greeted with this warning light on your dashboard, followed by an error number, is already a stressful experience. What happens, though, if you see an error code but no light? It is possible that the condition that prompted the code did not occur frequently enough to ignite the light. This most likely indicates that the problem is not serious and that the code is still in the works.

In addition to playback capabilities and testing equipment, an OBD2 scanner may include these characteristics.

Continue reading to discover more about this issue and how to resolve it.

The Dreaded Check Engine Light

The Check Engine Light (CEL), often known as the idiot light or Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), is a warning light that is activated by the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) to inform you that there is a problem with your vehicle. The CEL is located on the instrument panel or dash of most automobiles and provides the following information:

  • Engine
  • Check engine
  • Service engine as soon as possible
  • Maintenance necessary
  • In addition, it may display a symbol of an engine
  • Emiss Maintenance.

It generally emits an orange, yellow, red, or amber hue and can be either flashing or constant in its output, depending on the model. Low oil pressure to an impending engine failure are all possibilities when this warning light illuminates. In addition to turning on the CEL, the PCM also records one or more issue or fault codes in its memory that correlate to the CEL. Prior to the advent of OBDII, the check engine light on the majority of automobiles could generate codes. You will now require a scanner in order to identify the precise code.

However, in rare instances, you may receive issue codes, but the light will not illuminate.

Either condition has the potential to produce unwelcome anxiety, which is why it is critical to discover and eliminate the underlying cause of the recurrence.

What Triggers the Check Engine Light?

Understanding what causes the CEL to illuminate is essential to determining why it is not illuminated. Your vehicle’s PCM/ECM/ECU has a large number of issue codes recorded in its repository, each of which corresponds to a distinct trigger. The following are the most often encountered:

  • Gas cap that is too loose– A gas cap that is too loose causes problems with your car’s fuel distribution system because it fails to maintain the proper pressure throughout the system, resulting in gasoline loss. After you’ve tightened or replaced the gas cap, you may start driving. Once this occurs, the light should turn off on its own
  • However, there is no set schedule for when this will take place. Failure of the oxygen sensor– A faulty oxygen sensor can result in decreased fuel efficiency, broken spark plugs, and a failed emissions test. The presence of large levels of methanol/ethanol or other additives in your engine is also suggestive of this condition. Misfires, slowed acceleration, reduced gas mileage, and sudden shut-offs are all possible consequences of a worn or fouled spark plug, wires, and ignition coil. Catalytic converter that is blocked as a result of poor vehicle care, such as frequent oil changes or driving just short distances most of the time Failure of the mass airflow sensor– This sensor measures the quantity of air entering the engine and allows your vehicle to respond to variations in altitude by adjusting the amount of air entering the engine. Rusty idling, poor gas consumption, and rapid changes in the throttle pedal position are all indicators of a faulty ignition system. Leakage from the vacuum system – The vacuum system is responsible for a wide range of functions, including reducing hazardous emissions. If you have a leak, your car will begin to surge or will settle at an exceptionally high RPM for a period of time. Cracked fittings, loose connections, or drying out of the vacuum line are the most common causes of this problem. Problems with the thermostat– The thermostat is responsible for regulating the flow of coolant to the engine. Whenever it is malfunctioning or suffers a leak, it adds to the contamination of the coolant, which can become corrosive and cause the engine to overheat. Adding coolant does not automatically reset your check engine light, nor does it ensure that your thermostat or ECT sensor are in good working order. Low Oil Pressure– This is a serious problem that must be addressed immediately since overfilling or air in the oil pump might cause your car to become unusable. This is shown by the oil light on your dashboard, which is also illuminated by the CEL.
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The check engine light is often activated by one of these problems. However, this does not rule out the possibility of them if your scanner gets coded information (without the warning light coming on). If you suffer any of these problems yet continue to receive errors even after making fixes and turning off the light, you either have a CEL bug or haven’t properly addressed the underlying source of the problem. In this circumstance, you should seek the advice of a mechanic.

Mechanism Malfunction

The fact that the CEL glows occasionally is a source of concern for car owners. The check engine light may be turned off at times, but the code may still be there. On other instances, it functions normally and illuminates with an error code shown. One probable explanation for this is that the PCM may have a bad electrical connection or wiring difficulties, which causes the CEL function to be intermittent. In addition to sensor failures and jammed valves, there are other possibilities. Whatever the problem, it is recommended to remove the hood and physically examine all of the wires, cables, fuses, and other sorts of connections under the hood before continuing.

For example, if you detect CEL difficulties exclusively after a rainfall, simulate a wet day using a hose to see if the problem persists.

Engine Code Classifications

In addition to becoming familiar with CEL triggers, you should get familiar with the many types of codes your car generates – both conventional and enhanced codes – and how to read them appropriately.

Standard or Generic Codes

This collection of standardized diagnostic codes, often known as ‘P’ codes, includes engine-related vehicle systems and can be read by any OBDII-compatible car. There are three sorts of ‘P’ codes, which are as follows:

  • Pending Codes– While these codes will not cause your check engine light to illuminate, they will alert you to the fact that a system in your vehicle is performing strangely. In the case of a temperature sensor with a regular working range of 90-110° and a temperature reading of 85°, the sensor may generate an error code without triggering any warning lights, simply because temperature sensors typically have an acceptable range of 80-120 degrees. Valid Codes– Using the same example as previously, if the temperature sensor detects anything below 80 degrees or anything beyond 120 degrees, your car will generate this code and alert you to the problem. In contrast to pending codes, this is accompanied by an illuminated warning sign and indicates that there is a problem that has to be addressed
  • In recent years, permanent codes have been introduced. This type of code will only clear itself after the underlying cause of the problem has been identified and resolved, and it cannot be eliminated by a scan tool. This is due to the fact that the PCM will only clear the code when a sufficient amount of data has been acquired under a variety of driving scenarios. It is common for permanent codes to be traced back to emissions-related equipment.

Enhanced or Manufacturer Codes

These codes apply to non-engine-related car systems such as the anti-lock braking system, airbags, transmission, BCM, HVAC, transfer case, and other non-engine-related vehicle systems. They are unique to each manufacturer and are thus unreachable on generic scanners and devices. Enhanced codes can be classified into four categories: The alphanumeric format of both code classes is the same. The first bit is represented by a letter, while the other bits are all represented by integers. It is critical to understand how to interpret the third digit since it indicates the specific car part that has a problem.

  • 1. Fuel and air metering and emissions control
  • 2. Fuel metering
  • 3. Ignition system and misfires
  • And 4. Fuel metering 4 – Monitoring of the exhaust
  • The Vehicle Speed Control System, as well as the Idle Control System, are number five. 6 — Circuit for computer input and output
  • 78 – The transmission system

Deciphering Check Engine Codes

Following your familiarization with the various error code categories, let’s move on to the process of determining their meaning.

The oxygen sensor code P0171 is an excellent location to start looking for troubleshooting information. The following is a breakdown of this example:

  • P – The first character identifies the vehicle system that has been compromised. Powertrain is denoted by the letter P in this example. 0 – The second number indicates the kind of error code. Standard/generic is represented by the number 0, whereas enhanced/manufacturer is represented by the number 1. 1 – The third character draws attention to the portion of the vehicle that is causing problems. In this scenario, 1 indicates the issue of fuel and air metering as well as emissions control
  • 71 – The fourth and fifth numbers show the fault code, which in this case indicates a lean air/fuel mixture
  • The remaining digits indicate the engine speed.

It’s possible that your check engine light won’t come on if the second digit is a zero, which indicates that there is a pending code in your system. If this is the case, make certain you solve the problem indicated by the engine code. It’s important to remember that even with the CEL switched off, codes can still be read. The fact that there is no warning light does not make the matter any less serious.

How to Reset Your Check Engine Light

While modern vehicles feature a self-correcting system that turns off the CEL after the fundamental cause of the problem has been identified and corrected, there are times when you will need to do the repair yourself. The automobile not doing so on its own, avoiding an emission test failure, or being 100 percent certain that there is no problem with your vehicle are all examples of what is included. The following are the actions to follow in order to reset the check engine light:

  1. Continue driving until the engine shuts off. In most cases, your vehicle’s sensors will review the condition that first caused the light and will turn it off after they determine that the problem has been resolved. It is necessary to drive your automobile in order to start this procedure. To do so, turn the ignition off and on three times. This procedure is referred to as the PCM /ECM hard reset technique. The car resets the fault codes by turning the ignition key on and off in a series of consecutive turns. Because this is a straightforward procedure, it is recommended that you attempt it first before going on to other methods of resetting the check engine light. Disconnect the battery terminals from the rest of the system. Disconnecting the negative connection from the battery and pressing the horn to drain any residual power from the capacitor are all simple steps to take. Then you’ll have to wait 15 minutes. Place your key in the ignition and turn the key on and off three times to remove the emission and flag data from the vehicle. After that, reconnect the negative connection and turn on the engine. Within 1-2 minutes, the light should be turned off. Connecting the battery at your own risk may cause all of your radio and onboard component settings to be reset, as well as the light
  2. Proceed at your own risk Make use of an OBDII scanner. You’ll need a code scanner to delete the codes from your vehicle’s on-board diagnostics computer – albeit not all code readers are capable of doing so. If you happen to have one of these devices, it’s as simple as plugging it in and picking whatever code you want to eliminate. Take note that vehicles manufactured before to 1996 may need you to use a different scanner or may not have OBD ports at all, which are located behind the steering column or control panel. Determine which fuse is in charge of the light. To turn off the check engine light, you may either pull out the PCM fuse and replace it, or you can disconnect the battery to turn off the check engine light fuse. This procedure may not be appropriate for newer vehicles because it will just disconnect the CEL connection from the electronically controlled unit
  3. However, it may be appropriate for older vehicles.

Does the Check Engine Light Reset Itself?

When you fix the problem in most automobile models, the check engine light will go off again immediately. However, it is not a completely immediate process. In engine management, each component is assigned a priority based on its importance. Following at least three attempts to pass a test, the check engine light is turned off, depending on the nature of the problem. In the case of more serious faults, the light will automatically reset itself after 50-100 miles of driving or 10-20 successful cycles.

This number of cycles must be completed in a reasonable amount of time.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is the approximate cost of diagnosing a check engine light? The average fee to have a mechanic diagnose your check engine light is $100, but you may be able to find one for less money, which does not include repair costs in the process. By purchasing anOBD2 code scanner(view on Amazon) online or from an auto parts store, you can get a glimpse of the potential problem before it becomes a problem. An app on your mobile device or smartphone will display the code in the majority of modern systems. How long will it take for the check engine light to turn off after it has been reset? This is dependent on whether you were able to permanently resolve the underlying issue that caused the check engine light to illuminate or whether other vehicle failures would result in another warning code being displayed. Is it possible to pass emissions after resetting your check engine light? If you wait until the last minute to perform the reset, you will almost certainly fail your emissions test. The reason for this is that your vehicle’s catalyst and exhaust gas oxidation (EVAP) monitors require time to operate properly. In order to ensure that your vehicle passes emissions tests, pre-testing your vehicle prior to your test schedule is recommended.

Conclusion – Check Engine Light Off But Code Still There

Troubleshooting issue codes and determining why your check engine light may not be working may be time-consuming and irritating, especially if you are not familiar with how your vehicle’s computer operates. Automobile owners are fortunate in that all autos made in the last two decades have been OBD-compliant. Nowadays, having an OBDII scanner and a smartphone can assist in identifying the causes of code readings and resolving engine problems. In circumstances where there is no check engine light but there are codes, keep in mind that non-emissions related problems are more likely than not not to cause the check engine light to illuminate.

If you keep this truth in mind, it will be easier to maintain your composure if you experience this difficulty on the road.

Dtc code but no check engine light on

Solving problem codes and determining why your check engine light may not be working can be time-consuming, especially if you are unfamiliar with how your vehicle’s computerized management system (PCM) operates. Fortunately for car owners, all automobiles made in the last two decades have been certified as OBD-II-compatible. Nowadays, having an OBDII scanner and a smartphone can assist in identifying the causes of code readings and resolving engine failure issues. In circumstances when there is no check engine light but there are codes, keep in mind that non-emissions related problems are more often than not not to result in the check engine light being illuminated.

If you keep this information in mind, it will be easier to maintain your composure if you run across this difficulty on the highway.

Moreover, becoming aware with your vehicle’s periodic maintenance requirements can assist you in avoiding the problems that cause the check engine light to illuminate in the first place.

Hello there, @magenta6958853! How is everything operating on your car at the moment? It is recommended that you unplug the device and contact your TEX team via 611 to get a ticket filed regarding the difficulties you are experiencing. On my 2014 Toyota Camry, the ABS and Brake Warning Lights were on as a result of my T Mobil Sync Device. When I disconnected the T Mobil Sync Device, the ABS and Brake Warning Lights turned out, and the car continued to run normally. I was quite pleased with this.

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I am apprehensive about using the Device in this car or in other vehicles in the future.

Check Engine Light Off But Code Still There: Why And How To Fix

You may feel your stomach drop when you see the check engine light (CEL) on your dashboard. This might signify that it’s time to make that much-dreaded and long-delayed trip to the mechanic. However, what does it indicate if the check engine light is not on but the problem code is still present? Some drivers may experience a panic attack as a result of this, particularly if they are on their way to a destination. Continue reading to learn more about the causes of this condition as well as possible solutions.

Any intermittent problem that may be resolved on its own can also cause an error code to be generated, but the CEL will not be activated.

5 Reasons Why Your Check Engine Light Off But Code Still There

Check Engine Light (CEL), often known as the idiot light or the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), indicates that there is a problem with your vehicle. On the dashboard or instrument panel of your car, you’ll discover this information. When the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) detects a problem and saves the relevant error code, the Check Engine Light (CEL) will typically light. However, it is possible to receive a fault code even while the CEL is not illuminated. Alternatively, it’s possible that the CEL was illuminated previously and you attempted to correct the problem.

We understand how upsetting the situation described above might be.

1 Problem Was Remedied On Its Own

Perhaps the code was not able to activate the check engine light due to a technical difficulty. Perhaps the problem isn’t as terrible as it appears and the code is only awaiting approval. If this is the case, there is no need to be concerned. Another option is that the problem, whatever it may have been, has been resolved on its own. Some small errors can be handled on their own, but because the code has already been transmitted, it remains in the memory until the problem is rectified.

Solution:If your check engine light is not illuminated but you are receiving an error code, you should utilize anOBD2 scanner to determine what the problem is. Then proceed in the appropriate manner.

2 Code Left In Long Term Memory

A code is established when the check engine light illuminates, and it usually remains in memory long after the light is turned off. Alternatively, if the problem was caused by an intermittent cause, the code will be removed if the problem does not arise again. As a rule of thumb, the code disappears after two weeks. Solution:In this scenario, you can continue to use your vehicle without having to clear any error codes. However, if you so want, you may clear the codes manually by resetting the check engine light as well as the dash code.

3 Non-Emissions Related Problems

Be mindful of the fact that most automotive problems that aren’t connected to emissions don’t cause the CEL to illuminate. The term ‘non-emissions-related difficulties’ refers to any issues that do not have an impact on emissions. For example, if there is an issue with the AC compressor relay, the check engine light will not illuminate, but a code will be sent. Other examples of such concerns include a corroded terminal, wiring faults, and so on and so forth. In most of these instances, the code shown is a fault code that relates with the circuit or some other system that has to be checked further.

You will need to have a look at the unit to see if it is in need of repair based on this information.

4 Pending Codes

Pending codes are a type of error code that does not cause the CEL to illuminate, but the error code will be shown. This alerts you to the fact that a certain system in your vehicle is malfunctioning. Example: A temperature sensor operating in the range of 90-110 degrees Celsius that registers something higher or lower than the range may result in a code being shown as ‘pending.’ However, if the value is between 80 and 120 degrees, there will be no warning light shown because this is considered an acceptable temperature range.

For this, you’ll need anOBDII scanner as well as a smartphone in order to decrypt the code and then proceed as needed.

5 PCM Electrical Problem

It is possible that the PCM has wiring faults or that the electrical connection is weak. Perhaps this is the reason why your CEL is not glowing while the code is still present. It is also possible that the engine sensor has failed or that certain valves have become jammed. Solution: You must examine all of the wires, cables, fuses, and other connections to ensure that they are in proper working order. Then try to narrow down what you think the problem is by asking questions.

Keep in mind that if these CEL issues only occur during the wet season, you may need to have your hoses checked out. You may also run a thorough CEL diagnostic to identify all of the engine controls that need to be repaired. In order to assist you with the same, below is a video tutorial:

Final Words

Getting an error code might be annoying, especially if the engine light isn’t activated at the same time as the code is shown. When you have rectified an issue and the check engine light turns off, but the code remains, the situation might appear even more perplexing than it really is. We hope that the information in the preceding post has assisted you in determining the probable causes of an error code but no check engine light. Knowing the causes behind this can assist you in remaining calm if you encounter a similar situation in the middle of the road while driving.

How To Check Engine Light Codes Without A Scanner + 3 FAQs

Understanding how to use an OBD1 or OBD2 scanner is something that every automobile owner should be familiar with. However, even if you are capable of operating a scanner or code reader, it is not always possible to have access to one. That is why it is critical to understand how to check engine codes without the use of a scanner. Fortunately, there are several methods for accomplishing this using only your rodometer or ignition key, which we’ll discuss in this post. We’ll walk you through the process of checking engine light codes without the use of a scanner, as well as answer any concerns you might have about the subject matter.


  • Instructions on How to Check Engine Light Codes Without Using a Scanner (with Pictures)
  • 3 Frequently Asked Questions on How To Check Car Codes Without Using A Code Scanner
  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on How To Check Car Codes Without Using A Code Scanner

Let’s get this party started.

How To Check Engine Light Codes Without A Scanner(Step-By-Step)

There are a variety of methods for obtaining a check engine light code or a set of codes without the use of a scanner or code reader. The strategy you use, on the other hand, will be determined by whether your car generates OBDI or OBDII codes. Here are various options for obtaining your vehicle’s identification number:

A. Using The Ignition Key

The ignition key approach is the quickest and most convenient method of obtaining OBDI and OBDII codes. Here’s a straightforward step-by-step procedure:

Step 1: Turn The Ignition Key

Switching the ignition key on and off without starting the engine is recommended. Do this several times (typically 3-5 times) and make sure you don’t keep your key in the ON position after you’ve finished. The exact number of times you must turn the ignition key varies on the make and model of your vehicle. There is, however, a simple technique to this. Check the dashboard behind your steering wheel to see whether all of the lights are on, and if they are, you may switch off the ignition. Please keep in mind that if you mistakenly start the engine, it will not harm you.

Step 2: Check Your Dashboard

The dash lights will all switch out immediately after they have illuminated, with the exception of one, which is normally the service engine light. Now pay close attention to it. Make a list of every issue code that appears on theodometer while the engine light is on (DTC). This approach is most commonly used with newer automobiles or vehicles equipped with the OBDII system. Alternatively, if, instead of the odometer display, your check engine or service enginelight starts to pulse or flash, then your car is classified as OBD1.

What method do you use to decode the code?

Engine light pulses are represented by numbers, and the pause between each pulse specifies the distance between the digits being represented by that number.

A zero is symbolized by a fast flash of the engine light on and off. For example, the pulse, pulse, pulse, PAUSE, pulse, pulse sequence for vehicle defect Code 32 will look like this: pulse, pulse, pulse, PAUSE, pulse, pulse(3 and 2 = 32).

Step 3: Note And Interpret The Check Engine Codes

Take note of the codes shown by the check engine light as they flash. Then look through your repair handbook for code explanations to figure out what the problem is exactly. As an illustration:

  • If you own a Honda, check engine code 0 indicates a problem with the Electronic Control Unit (ECU), and check engine code 16 indicates a problem with the fuel injectors, respectively. If you have a Nissan, fault code 22 indicates a problem with the fuel pump, while fault code 31 indicates a problem with the ECU.

Let’s have a look at the alternative option, which does not require the use of an engine code reader or a DTC scanner.

B. Using The Odometer

It is possible to read a check engine light code using the odometer technique without the need of a scanner or code reader. Here are the straightforward actions to take:

Step 1: Odometer Reset

While turning the ignition key ON, press the odometer’sTrip andResetbuttons to reset the odometer. To check for a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) after turning on the ignition, release the odometer Reset and Trip buttons and look for it on the odometer display once the key is turned on. The appearance of the fault code indicates that you were successful in creating a Diagnostic Trouble Code without the use of a code scanner. Make a list of all of the trouble codes and consult your handbook for the DTC meanings.

Step 2 (Optional): Odometer Reset And Multiple Ignition Key Flips

If the reset procedure does not work the first time, try it again. At this point, push the odometer Trip and Reset button while simultaneously turning the ignition key on and off several times. It is critical that the activity be completed with the ON state. Then press and hold the odometer Trip and Reset buttons for a few seconds. When you look at the digital odometer screen, the issue code should be shown there. What should you do if the error codes are still not appearing? This most likely indicates that your vehicle does not accept OBDII codes.

Step 3 (Alternative): Use A Paper Clip Or Jumper Wire

There is another approach to obtain your engine code if your vehicle supports OBD1 but does not react to the method described above. This method involves utilizing a paper clip or a jumper wire. To begin, make certain that your vehicle is switched off. Once you’ve done that, look below the steering wheel for the OBD port (diagnostic connector). Look through your owner’s handbook to find out where it is exactly. On the diagnostic connector, you’ll note that there are two terminals. A paperclip or a jumper wire can be used to connect them.

Then, without starting your car, switch the ignition to the ON position and the engine light will blink, displaying your fault code.

Now that you know how to check engine light codes for OBDI and OBDII codes without the use of a scanner, let’s look at some questions that are connected to this topic.

3 FAQs On How To CheckCar CodesWithout ACodeScanner

Some frequently asked questions about reading check engine or automobile fault codes without the use of a scanner or code reader are provided below.

1. How Do I Reset Or Clear Codes Without A Scan Tool?

If you have an OBD1 vehicle, the following are the procedures to follow in order to reset check engine light codes without the use of a scanner:

  • The first step is to park your automobile on a level surface and then apply the parking brake. Open the hood of your automobile when it is parked in a safe location.
  • Start by parking your automobile on level ground and using the parking brake to secure it. Open the hood of your automobile when it is parked in a safe area.
  • Third, after detaching the battery wires, you should turn the ignition switch on and off three times more than you did previously.
  • Third, after detaching the battery wires, you should turn the ignition switch on and off three times more than you did previously
  • Step 5: It’s time to reattach the battery wires to the vehicle. Before reconnecting, it is recommended that you wait 10-15 minutes. Attach the red wire to the positive terminal of the battery first, and then the black cable to the negative terminal of the battery. Close and tighten the clamps in order to keep them in place.
  • Step 6: Turn on the engine and look for any warning lights on the dashboard before proceeding. After that, run the engine to get it warmed up. The codes should be cleared, and the check engine light should be turned off as a result.
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Please keep in mind that this approach only works for OBDI automobiles and not for OBDII ones. In order to clear OBD2 codes, you must attach an OBD2 scanner to your 16-pin diagnostic connection using a diagnostic cable.

It is simple to obtain an OBD2 scanner on the open market. However, no matter which strategy you choose, the check engine light will illuminate again if the condition that caused the error code is not corrected.

2. What Should I Know About Checking Car Codes Without A Scanner?

Here are some things to keep in mind while checking the error codes on your car:

  • Following the completion of your mechanic’s repairs or replacement of damaged car parts, the OBD1 or OBD2 code will be immediately cleared.
  • To correctly read flash codes from the check engine light, you will need to try several times until you get it properly, especially if there are numerous codes.
  • If you are unable to produce or read the code using the odometer or the ignition key technique, you may always seek assistance from a professional technician.

3. What Is An Odometer Reset Button?

An odometer is a piece of equipment that measures the mileage traveled by your automobile. And the button that is used to reset the odometer back to zero miles is referred to as theodometer resetbutton. The position of the button is determined by the model of your vehicle. If you drive a Nissan or a Honda, for example, you’ll most likely locate the reset button on the left-hand steering wheel lever. Other car models may have it on the dashboard, near the odometer, or in the glove compartment.

Final Thoughts

It is possible to measure the distance traveled by your automobile using an odometer, which is an instrument. Theodometer resetbutton is the button that is used to reset the odometer back to zero miles. The position of the button is determined by the model of your automobile. You’ll often locate the reset button on the left-hand steering wheel lever if you drive a Nissan or a Honda, for example. In certain other car types, it may be located on or near the dashboard’s odometer.

Is Your Check Engine Light On? Here Are 10 Possible Reasons Why

It is configured to illuminate the orange engine-shaped indicator on your car’s instrument cluster when the vehicle’s electronic brain detects that anything is amiss with the vehicle’s electrical system. If you see it, don’t be alarmed; it doesn’t necessarily imply that you’ll have to hand over your next paycheck to the local mechanic. Some of the issues that cause the check engine light to illuminate are simple and may be resolved in a matter of minutes. Not only that, but don’t ignore it and have it looked out as soon as possible.

Please keep in mind that the fault code that triggered the warning light in the first place is saved in your car’s onboard computer, and you may recover it using a simple Bluetooth-powered device connected to an app to obtain a more detailed understanding of what exactly is wrong beneath the hood.

Oxygen sensor failure

Photograph by Ruslan Kudrin/123rf The oxygen sensor (also known as anO2 sensor) in a car’s exhaust system monitors the quantity of unburned oxygen present in the exhaust system. Data is transmitted to and processed by the vehicle’s computer, which makes use of the information to manage the combination of air and fuel that enters the combustion chamber. Even if an O2 sensor has to be changed, an engine will continue to function, but it will consume significantly more gasoline than usual. Long-term, a malfunctioning oxygen sensor can cause harm to other parts of the vehicle, such as the spark plugs and catalytic converter.

According to industry standards, a high-quality oxygen sensor will cost you around $175, but the cost of labor may vary substantially based on the vehicle’s make and model as well as your geographic area.

Finally, keep in mind that the majority of late-model automobiles are equipped with more than one oxygen sensor.

Loose fuel cap

123rf courtesy of John Wolf It is one of the most typical causes of the check engine light to illuminate, and it is caused by a loose fuel cap. The cap is an extremely important component of a car’s gasoline distribution system. It significantly reduces the amount of gasoline fumes that escape from the fuel tank, and it aids in maintaining the proper pressure throughout the entire system. Whether your check engine light comes on just after you fill up your tank, pull over and check to see if the cap is loose — or if it’s still on the roof of your car.

The majority of auto parts retailers sell universal-fit gas caps, which typically cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $15.

Other maintenance guides

  • How to change a car battery
  • How to rotate your tires
  • How to change your spark plugs
  • How to change your windshield wipers
  • And other automotive maintenance procedures.

Catalytic converter failure

Thecatalytic converteris a device that is installed into the exhaust system of a vehicle. It is responsible for converting the carbon monoxide produced during the combustion process to carbon dioxide. It’s a reasonably straightforward component, and its failure may frequently be avoided. The good news is that a new one will cost you between $200 and $600, depending on the make and model of the vehicle. A catalytic converter is installed in every late-model automobile that runs on gasoline. Maintaining your car’s catalytic converter on a regular basis (such as changing the oil) is critical to maintaining it in good functioning order.

And, as always, keep an ear and an eye out for any strange sounds or discolored smoke coming from the exhaust.

Spark plug/ignition coil issues

Olegdudko/123rf Simply said, an ignition coil is responsible for generating the energy required by the spark plugs to ignite the gasoline and air combination in the engine’s cylinders. Many contemporary automobiles employ one coil per cylinder rather than the one coil used in classic autos. Depending on whether your vehicle has a V8 engine beneath the hood, you might have up to eight different coils. Bugatti Chironhas 16 is a terrible creature. No matter how many coils you have, a faulty one will almost surely cause the check engine light to illuminate.

When it comes to spark plugs, old or fouled plugs can result in a range of problems, including an engine misfire and hesitation when driving at high speeds.

A good spark plug will cost you between $10 and $20, whereas a coil would cost you somewhere in the neighborhood of $50.

Bad spark plug wires

Mediagram/123rf A spark plug wire, as the name indicates, is responsible for transferring energy from the coil to the spark plug. It is necessary because the fuel and air combination in the cylinders would not ignite without it. In most cases, just one wire is used per cylinder, but there are some models — including some older Mercedes-Benzes — that have two spark plugs per cylinder and, thus, two wires to connect them together.

One of the symptoms of faulty spark plug wires is a rough idle, which is followed by a notable loss in engine performance as well as decreased gas mileage. For a set of plug wires, expect to pay around $50.

Mass airflow sensor failure

The mass airflow (MAF) sensor measures the amount of air that enters the engine at any given time. Because it is a component of the engine-management system, your vehicle would be unable to respond to variations in altitude if it did not have it. A rough idle, difficulty starting, and an abrupt shift in the position of the throttle pedal are all signs of a failed MAF sensor. Reduced gas mileage and stalling are other signs of a malfunctioning MAF system. For a late-model automobile, the cost of a MAF is normally between $120 and $150.

Issues with an aftermarket alarm

Kwangmoo/123rf If an aftermarket alarm is not correctly fitted, it can cause significant damage to your vehicle. It has the potential to deplete the battery, cause the check engine light to illuminate, or even prohibit the car from starting altogether. A leaf from an oak tree will then fall on the hood of your car, causing it to go off in the middle of the night when you are least expecting it. If any of the difficulties listed above seem similar, you’ll need to have your alarm system repaired, reinstalled, or completely replaced by a qualified mechanic.

Vacuum leak

Svéd Svéd/123rf Olivér Svéd/123rf Every automobile is equipped with a vacuum system that can perform a wide range of tasks. The brake booster is operated by vacuum, and the vacuum system also contributes to the reduction of hazardous emissions by channeling gases produced by gasoline evaporation via the engine. The cause of a spike in your car’s idle speed or a steady state at an exceptionally high rpm might be a vacuum leak in the engine. With time, vacuum hoses can get dry and fracture, especially if they’re exposed to high heat or cold for an extended period of time.

Cracked fittings and loose connections are two more concerns that frequently occur.

Exhaust gas recirculation valve failure

Dmitrii Bachtub/123rf is a member of the 123rf team. Using the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system in your automobile, you can reduce the quantity of nitrogen oxide that is released from the engine while also increasing its overall efficiency. Essentially, it recirculates hot exhaust gases through the combustion chambers, warming the fuel and making it easier to burn. It also has the additional benefit of lowering emissions. The EGR valve might get blocked or completely stop working. In a very short period of time, if you have even a rudimentary understanding of mechanical principles, you can remove the valve, clean it, and reinstall it.

Dead battery

The battery is as straightforward as it is critical; without it, your automobile will not start, will not illuminate the road ahead, and will not charge your phone. Batteries today last far longer than they did in the past, and they require no maintenance. The cost of a new battery varies depending on the type of vehicle you drive, but you should budget at least $100 for a high-quality battery. When it comes to changing or charging a battery on your own, it’s a reasonably simple process. However, bear in mind that in certain late-model automobiles, the battery is buried behind a multitude of plastic covers, making it quite difficult to reach.

Also, keep in mind that unplugging the battery can frequently cause your radio system to restart. If you don’t have the code, you should get it from your local dealer before you unbolt the positive and negative terminals of the battery. If you don’t, you’ll be driving about in quiet.

My check engine light is on. Now what?

Modern automobiles are jam-packed with high-tech features, yet for some reason, you still need a separate, aftermarket equipment to figure out why your check engine light is up. The vast majority of motorists just take their vehicle to a dealership. That is the quickest and most convenient way out, but it is also the most costly. You may save money by purchasing a Bluetooth-compatible OBD II scanner (or a more advanced adaptor) and downloading a suitable software such as Torque from either the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store instead of taking your vehicle to a mechanic.

  1. Ready?
  2. It’s normally located in the driver’s footwell, not far from the hood release, although it may also be found beneath the center console or in a compartment built into the floor in certain vehicles.
  3. You’ll need to do a little investigating to figure out what something like P1301 signifies in some cases; in others, the codes are easily described.
  4. The usage of error codes is a valuable diagnostic tool that may assist you in determining where to begin when your automobile requires repair; nevertheless, it is important to recognize their limitations.
  5. A issue with the turbo was discovered while working on a relative’s automobile that had lost all power.
  6. The problem, however, was not with the item itself, but rather with a damaged vacuum hose.
  7. It is possible that you may need to spend a few minutes (or, at worst, a number of hours) poking about in the engine compartment in order to locate the problem.
  8. The scanner can only provide you with a code; you must also have in-depth knowledge of what each code represents or a practical method of determining what each code represents.
  9. Investing in a Bluetooth scanner and an app, on the other hand, will save you both time and money while also increasing your driving knowledge.
  10. Some of the more affordable scanners will not work with all makes and models, so it is important to conduct your homework.

Will the check engine light tell me when I should fix my car?

The check engine light offers an indication of what is wrong with an automobile, which might be exact or ambiguous depending on the situation. It does not, however, take the role of a qualified technician or periodic maintenance. To put it another way, don’t wait until the check engine light illuminates before doing routine auto maintenance. When the water pump is going to fail, when one of the ball joints is worn, or when the air conditioning stops blowing cold air in the middle of August, the ECU will not give you a heads-up.

In reality, it acts as an alarm that your vehicle is most likely due for a costly engine repair.

Maintaining your vehicle may be thought of as a two-step procedure.

You should do these tune-ups on a regular basis rather than only when there is a problem.

You should also be aware with your car’s fundamental requirements, such as how often the oil and coolant should be changed and how often the brake pads should be replaced.

The time and money you save by doing some preliminary study about your unique car and basic mechanics will pay off in the long run. If you maintain a regular maintenance schedule, it’s possible that the small orange engine light will never illuminate at all.

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