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post #1 of 20 Old 03-26-2010, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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Engine Malfunction Indicator Lamp

Driving home tonight, and after about 15 minutes of driving I came to a light. I then accelerated normally to about 20mph. Then I wondered to myself, why not open her up? So I did and got to about maybe 65-70mph. I then noticed my engine malfunction indicator lamp began to blink. The light stopped blinking after about 10 seconds and went off.

The rest of my drive home I did not see it again. I even stopped to get gas before my house, and did not see if after I restarted the car.

What could be the cause of this and should it be something to be worried about? I consulted the manual, but didn't really explain much.

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post #2 of 20 Old 03-26-2010, 11:14 PM
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Exclamation

Was it an exclamation mark? like ^^


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post #3 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 07:23 AM
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During regular intervals, when certain conditions are met (like a minimum water temperature, constant speed for a certain period of time), the on board computer fires up certain emissions related tests. So, when the engine light came on the first time, obviously the computer detected some emissions problem. Now, when it started blinking that means one or more cylinders started misfiring.

Your best case scenario is bad gasoline. Easy to fix that one, just fill up at a different gas station. Your worse case scenario that may cost $, well, there are lots of worse scenarios, like a catalytic converter gone bad, or a bad spark plug or a bad coi, or a bad injector, or timing out of whack, or...

Have a mechanic read the code that is stored in the computer and post it here to know more.
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post #4 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Aceman196 View Post
Was it an exclamation mark? like ^^
No it wasn't that symbol.
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post #5 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by TonyWare View Post
During regular intervals, when certain conditions are met (like a minimum water temperature, constant speed for a certain period of time), the on board computer fires up certain emissions related tests. So, when the engine light came on the first time, obviously the computer detected some emissions problem. Now, when it started blinking that means one or more cylinders started misfiring.

Your best case scenario is bad gasoline. Easy to fix that one, just fill up at a different gas station. Your worse case scenario that may cost $, well, there are lots of worse scenarios, like a catalytic converter gone bad, or a bad spark plug or a bad coi, or a bad injector, or timing out of whack, or...

Have a mechanic read the code that is stored in the computer and post it here to know more.

I'll definitely try to have it read today before I head into work. Any idea if I can get this done at an Autozone, Advanced Autoparts, etc? I was going to try one of them on the way to work. Like I said, it only came on for a few seconds and went off, so I am hoping its the less serious like bad gasoline. But, I did just extend my warranty, so that makes me feel a bit better about a serious problem.


Aceman196, here is a picture of what I am talking about.
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post #6 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 08:25 AM
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Yeah you can have it read at autozone for free, most auto parts stores will do it for you.

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post #7 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies guys.

Just took a ride down to Autozone and got it read for free. No stored code in the system, so should be good to go.
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post #8 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 10:06 AM
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I would look into the problem deeper if I were you. A blinking CEL on all or most OBDII cars is the signal for an engine misfire. This problem does not always get stored as a code in your car's ECU. TonyWare is absolutely right and you could have a larger problem that your car is just not throwing a code for.

I can give you two personal examples why you should look into this more.

I had an 03 Lincoln LS that was notorious for destroying coil packs. I would have blinking CEL constantly due to the misfires but the tech could never figure out why since it stored no code. We finally took a drive with his data reader plugged into my OBDII port and found multiple cylinders misfiring and yet....no code. This turned into a bigger problem because not only did I need to replace the coil packs but I had ignored this problem for so long that the misfires caused the unspent fuel to be dumped into my catalytic converters and it destroyed them as well.

A second example is my WRX was misfiring constantly. I would get a random code for a specific cylinder but I couldnt find any problems when I took it apart. Finally all 4 cylinders were throwing a misfire code. I couldnt find an immediate problem with the spark plugs or coils so I cleared the code again. A few weeks later I got another code for a bad O2 sensor that in turn was causing all of the misfires due to the wrong air fuel readings. After I changed the O2 sensor, not more misfires, no more problems.

I would absolutely check to see that your coilpacks have no compromised fins on them and that your spark plugs are good and properly gapped. This could be a single occurence but in the world of cars, I don't give anything the benefit of the doubt. Especially when it could cost you down the road.
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post #9 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by glanga View Post
I would look into the problem deeper if I were you. A blinking CEL on all or most OBDII cars is the signal for an engine misfire. This problem does not always get stored as a code in your car's ECU. TonyWare is absolutely right and you could have a larger problem that your car is just not throwing a code for.

I can give you two personal examples why you should look into this more.

I had an 03 Lincoln LS that was notorious for destroying coil packs. I would have blinking CEL constantly due to the misfires but the tech could never figure out why since it stored no code. We finally took a drive with his data reader plugged into my OBDII port and found multiple cylinders misfiring and yet....no code. This turned into a bigger problem because not only did I need to replace the coil packs but I had ignored this problem for so long that the misfires caused the unspent fuel to be dumped into my catalytic converters and it destroyed them as well.

A second example is my WRX was misfiring constantly. I would get a random code for a specific cylinder but I couldnt find any problems when I took it apart. Finally all 4 cylinders were throwing a misfire code. I couldnt find an immediate problem with the spark plugs or coils so I cleared the code again. A few weeks later I got another code for a bad O2 sensor that in turn was causing all of the misfires due to the wrong air fuel readings. After I changed the O2 sensor, not more misfires, no more problems.

I would absolutely check to see that your coilpacks have no compromised fins on them and that your spark plugs are good and properly gapped. This could be a single occurence but in the world of cars, I don't give anything the benefit of the doubt. Especially when it could cost you down the road.

I think I'll be on the safe side and take it to the dealer. What exactly should I be asking for? Just say my CEL came on and went off? The car is still under warranty so hopefully if its a major problem it will be covered.

Should I expect the dealer charge me to run a diagnostic to check for codes or would this be something covered under my warranty?
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post #10 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 07:28 PM
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CMD i am having the same exact problem, the light blinks at about 6k rpm for me, then continues to blink for a few seconds, then it shuts off.

It sucks the code isnt stored, but i do think this is known as a missfire. I recently changed all the spark plugs and the car runs much better, but it did this prior to the spark plug change.

Let me know if you find anything new i want to figure this out badly. i also hope its the gasoline quality, but i cant be sure.

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post #11 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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CMD i am having the same exact problem, the light blinks at about 6k rpm for me, then continues to blink for a few seconds, then it shuts off.
Couldn't have described what happened better, I am going to try and get into a dealer this week and see what they say. I'll post up what they tell me.
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post #12 of 20 Old 03-27-2010, 09:42 PM
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I got something similar to this with my 09 V6 Accord ... I took it many times to the dealer ... it had similar symptomps ... sometimes with code saved and sometimes without ... dealer replaced sensors but without a result ... finally it was a loose chip in the car computer ... it was replaced and no more malufunction light coming ON ... Final talk, it is either a loose connection or a loose computer chip, I guess ... good luck.

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post #13 of 20 Old 03-28-2010, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Maroonbeast View Post
I got something similar to this with my 09 V6 Accord ... I took it many times to the dealer ... it had similar symptomps ... sometimes with code saved and sometimes without ... dealer replaced sensors but without a result ... finally it was a loose chip in the car computer ... it was replaced and no more malufunction light coming ON ... Final talk, it is either a loose connection or a loose computer chip, I guess ... good luck.
Can you elaborate what the dealer did?

Do you run premium gas in your accord?

You having the same problem with a 2009 car means its probably not the Catalytic converters.

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post #14 of 20 Old 03-28-2010, 11:31 PM
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Yes I use premium gas ... you can refer to my thread to get better idea of the problem:

http://radio-pro.ru/forums/sh...276#post562276

Thank you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan View Post
Can you elaborate what the dealer did?

Do you run premium gas in your accord?

You having the same problem with a 2009 car means its probably not the Catalytic converters.

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post #15 of 20 Old 04-01-2010, 10:22 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dan View Post
CMD i am having the same exact problem, the light blinks at about 6k rpm for me, then continues to blink for a few seconds, then it shuts off.

It sucks the code isnt stored, but i do think this is known as a missfire. I recently changed all the spark plugs and the car runs much better, but it did this prior to the spark plug change.

Let me know if you find anything new i want to figure this out badly. i also hope its the gasoline quality, but i cant be sure.

Went to the dealer today to have the car looked at. They ran a diagnostic and found that the code which sent my CEL off was for a random misfire as you guys said it might be. Stated all my spark plugs were in good condition and it must have just been water in my fuel. Said he could not find anything else wrong with the vehicle and we even took it for a ride with the code reader hooked up to the vehicle to see if it could find anything. He cleared the code and said I should be good to go. If its not, got it on paper and will be utilizing the warranty some more.


The service tech was also a bit perplexed by the front end of my vehicle. He is like "When I type in the VIN its a 2005, but it looks like a 2006 from the front." Couple of the techs were looking at it and thought it was an interesting mod.

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