San Carlos Auto Repair

Call Us: (650) 595-2277
Mon - Fri: 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM | Sat: 7:30 AM - 2:00 PM

San Carlos Check Engine Light


The Check Engine Light - also known as the “Malfunction Indicator Lamp” (MIL) for short or Service engine soon light — is a signal from the vehicles engine computer that something is not operating within factory specifications. A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. can diagnose the problem for you and in some cases fix the issue during the inspection. Figure A. shows the most common symbols used for check engine lights on todays vehicles.

(Fig A.) Most common check engine light symbols used

In 1997, A+ Japanese Auto opened our facility the same year car manufactures switched to OBD II (on board diagnosis 2), which used a standardized list of diagnostic trouble codes (DTC). All vehicles with OBD II use a universal connector. A+ Japanese Auto Repair has grown-up with this technology. We excel at check engine light diagnosis and are known throughout San Mateo County as the best auto repair facility to take your vehicle for an accurate check engine light inspection. We employ the latest diagnostic scanners and computers to help get to the root of your check engine light concern with efficiency. Efficiency equals cost effective. In short, taking your vehicle to an expert at check engine light diagnosis saves you time and money.

Deciphering the Code:

Deciphering the code is the first part of the diagnosis process for Check Engine Light inspection. After accessing the onboard computer with our Scan Tool, we will retrieve a code that will indicate to us what system(s) have detected issues. These codes will give us an idea or direction on where to start our inspection. From here, we will typically start with a print out of a complex electrical circuit and system and test it until we find an issue. Each system or circuit varies in its complexity, number of sensors, components etc. However if you drive a Honda, Acura, Toyota, Lexus, Nissan, Infiniti, Mazda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Kia, Scion, Hyundai, Isuzu or Hybrid vehicle, A+ Japanese Auto Repair has performed so many check engine light inspections on these cars that we are aware of all common issues and how the circuits work. This means a faster car diagnosis and repair due to our expertise. This also means we will save you money by going directly to the source of the problem. Figure B below shows a typical read out from our Scan Tool. Think EKG machines that a doctor uses. This scanner can test a multitude of systems at the same time and helps us diagnose the system or circuit causing your check engine light to come on.

(Fig B.) One of the scanners we employ for check engine light diagnosis.

Don't Ignore The Light

So if the Check Engine light comes on what do you do? The most obvious answer, of course, is to get your vehicle checked out by A+ Japanese Auto Repair. But many people ignore the check engine light fearing an expensive repair bill. There are many reasons why this is a bad idea. Most importantly your vehicle could be causing damage to itself, the environment, using excess fuel, and more importantly could leave you stranded depending on the issue.

The Clients First Step:

Before bringing in your vehicle, first check to see if the gas cap is loose. A loose cap sends an error message to the vehicles computer, reporting a leak in the evaporative system. 1 out of 10 vehicles that come into A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. will have a loose or missing gas cap and simply tightening the cap and clearing the code will address the issue. The other 9 out of 10 vehicles will require further inspection to discover what is causing this light to turn on.

When you bring your vehicle to A+ Japanese Auto Repair you can depend on us to always perform a cost-efficient Check Engine Light inspection for your vehicle. We will always confirm an issue with a system or circuit with real numbers (I.e. 24 ohms is out of specifications, or lost 12 volt supply due to short to ground etc.) What this means to the client is there is no guesswork - we find the problem and fix it. That is our commitment to you, our client. When it comes Check Engine Light diagnosis not all auto repair shops employ the latest Check Engine Light equipment, and that costs you time and money! At A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. we use the highest quality Check Engine Light diagnosis equipment so we can offer our clients a fast, affordable and accurate Check Engine Light inspection. At A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. you will have a mechanic who is continually training to perform an accurate Check Engine Light diagnosis on your Honda, Acura, Toyota, Lexus, Nissan, Infiniti, Mazda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Kia, Scion, Hyundai, Isuzu and Hybrid vehicles. If you have any further questions regarding this common auto repair, please call or visit A+ Japanese Auto Repair for a free consultation today.