You’re 4-wheeling along a forest covered, mountain two-track, negotiating boulders, loose mud, deep ruts, and even stream beds. In a word, your Jeep Wrangler is running great. But then suddenly and unexpectedly, your “check engine” light comes on. You’re out in the middle of nowhere and therefore, a chill runs down your spine. What if your engine is about to fail you?
According to the 4-wheeling experts in a recent report, there’s nothing more nerve wracking than that “pesky check engine light” flashing on your dash’s instrument panel. It’s especially annoying when you’re quite sure there’s nothing even remotely wrong with your Jeep Wrangler. But that light can appear for a bunch of different reasons, some of which can be directly related to the engine and some of which—and this is key—aren’t related to your engine whatsoever.
But here’s the thing, just because your Jeep seems to be running great, that check engine light should not be ignored. In fact, you should have it checked by a licensed mechanic who owns a professional grade, on-board diagnostics scanner.
When it comes to auto mechanics, you have a choice. You can completely interrupt your life and drop your precious Jeep off at the dealer’s auto repair shop, which will not only tie up your ride for a full day or even two, but the diagnostic scan and associated repairs can potentially cost you an arm and two legs. Or, you can place your trust and the life of your Jeep engine in the hands of a certified mobile auto service/repair shop.
Why go with the latter? Says San Francisco Bay’s, Service Up (www.ServiceUp.io) mobile vehicle repair service, once you connect with a reputable mobile mechanic’s outfit and get a solid quote for your diagnostic check, they will come to you, instead of you going to them. They will pick up your Jeep and drive it to a shop that houses the necessary diagnostic equipment. The test is done that morning, and if a repair is required it will most likely be fixed that day.
If the repair isn’t serious, you’re likely to get your Jeep back that same morning. What’s the old saying? Easy peasy, lemon squeazy? That’s what you’re looking at with a mobile repair service. Plus, the price is said to be much less than a conventional shop experience.
But then, what if you don’t want to use a traditional or mobile repair service at all, choosing instead to diagnose the check engine light problem on your own? Here’s how you can go about it.
Just Insert The Key
4wheeldriveguide.com states that if you drive a Jeep Wrangler JK, you can check your own engine fault codes by simply inserting the key into the ignition, then turn it three times to what’s called the “run position,” without actually turning the engine over.
This tells the on-board diagnostics computer there’s been 3 bad runs with the same check engine error. It then delivers a code via the instrument panel.
Don’t Pretend Nothing Is Wrong
Even though you know how to access the on-board diagnostics computer, you don’t want to pretend nothing’s wrong with the Jeep and therefore, proceed to clear the engine codes. Maybe you’ve done some self-maintenance that involves an electric fault code and that resolves the problem. Or perhaps the problem is as simple as leaving your fuel cap open (no exaggeration) and now you’ve got a check engine light staring you in the face.
If you’ve done a thorough check and still can’t find anything wrong, you will want to check in with a reputable mobile or traditionally based mechanic with an on-board diagnostic scanner tool. That said, if you’re still convinced there’s nothing wrong with your Jeep, you just might want to go ahead and not only reset the check engine light, but also clear your fault codes.
If you want to know more about other Jeep issues, such as the problems with the Jeep Liberty we have done the research on that also. Take a read.
Check Engine Light Reset/Clear Your Codes
Modern Jeeps come with a Powertrain Control Module (PCM) that will scan all signals and sensors built into the electronic components in your vehicle. If the PCM detects a problem or problems, it sends a code that’s displayed on your instrument panel.
Maybe there was a mechanical fault which you were able fix on your own. So how do you go about clearing the codes and resetting your check engine light? First off, make sure the engine is shut down, and the key no longer inserted in the ignition. Disconnect the battery terminals and wait 5 minutes. When the time is up, go ahead and reconnect the battery terminals. Then, reinsert the key to the run position without actually starting the engine. The check engine light and fault codes should disappear.
But if they haven’t, it’s strongly suggested you consult with a mobile and/or traditional mechanic. It could be that your do-it-yourself approach to Jeep on-board diagnostics isn’t working.