What Is That? Check Engine Light Service at AutoChoice Service Center
Posted September 30, 2017 8:48 AM
Okay. You went to your local Bloomington car wash, and while your vehicle was under the dryer, the Check Engine light started flashing. Panic! What did you just do? Something is seriously wrong with the vehicle! You head for the nearest Bloomington service center, but on the way, the Check Engine light stops flashing and just glows red. Hmm. Maybe things aren't as bad as they seem. You decide to wait until payday to take your vehicle in to get serviced. In the meantime, the Check Engine light goes off. What? You decide the light must be faulty; maybe when it comes on it doesn't mean anything, or maybe it's just in your vehicle as some sort of scam to get you to pay for unnecessary repairs. You're glad you didn't take your car to the Bloomington repair shop and resolve to ignore that Check Engine light in the future.
Whoa! Let's look at what really happened. Your vehicle was under an air dryer. Your air intake sensor measured too much air running through the engine. It sent its report to the engine computer, where a warning was triggered; there shouldn't be that much airflow when the vehicle engine is idling. This is a serious problem that could cause permanent engine damage. Warning! The Check Engine light starts flashing, letting you know you need to take immediate action to prevent that damage.
You drive out from under the dryer, and the air intake sensor sends a new message to the computer. The computer realizes that everything is normal and tells the Check Engine light to stop flashing. The vehicle doesn't need immediate attention; but there was a problem, and it should be checked out by your AutoChoice Service Center service advisor. After a few days the computer senses that the problem is gone, so it turns off the warning light.
You may think this story illustrates the uselessness of a Check Engine light, but you should remember that a computer can't think for itself; it can only follow its programming. It doesn't know the difference between a car wash air dryer and a serious malfunction in your vehicle engine. That doesn't make it useless. It just means you have to be the smart one.
Being smart doesn't mean ignoring your vehicle Check Engine light. It lets you know when something is wrong, and you can prevent a lot of damage to your vehicle by paying proper attention to it.
Your engine computer is constantly collecting data about what is going on inside your vehicle engine. It knows what parameters are normal and when a reading may indicate a problem. It uses the Check Engine light to let you know when something isn't right. It then stores a code in its memory — which a technician can retrieve — that indicates which reading was abnormal.
The technician uses this code as a starting place to find out what's wrong with your vehicle. It's like going to the doctor with a fever. The fever is the reading that is abnormal — your temperature is too high — but the doctor still has to figure out what's causing it. It's probably an infection, but what kind? Sinus infection? Appendicitis? Flu? The problems and their solutions are quite different. But a fever also tells a doctor what's NOT wrong with you. Fevers don't accompany stress headaches, ulcers or arthritis, so there's no sense in testing for those conditions.
The pros at AutoChoice Service Center respond to a trouble code in your vehicle's computer in the same way. The code doesn't say exactly what's wrong, but it does give the technician a good indication of where to start looking —and where he/she doesn't need to look.
Now, you wouldn't consider diagnosing yourself with a serious medical problem — good medical advice unless you're a doctor. So you shouldn't consider trying to diagnose your vehicle's troubles by yourself — good auto advice unless you're a trained mechanic.
There are cheap scanners available on the market, and some Bloomington auto parts stores offer to read trouble codes from your vehicle engine's computer for you. But these are really not good alternatives to taking your vehicle to a qualified service center such as AutoChoice Service Center in Bloomington. Your engine's computer has both short-term and long-term memory, and there are some codes that are specific to a particular make of vehicle. Cheap scanners can't read an engine computer's long-term memory nor can they interpret manufacturer-specific codes. That's why our manager at AutoChoice Service Center spends a lot of money on high-end diagnostic tools.
It's as if you had a choice between a doctor who had a tongue depressor and a thermometer and one who had all the latest medical diagnostic equipment on hand. Honestly, which would you choose?
Getting your codes read at your Bloomington area auto parts store isn't really a money-saver, either, unless you're a trained mechanic. You'll end up with a code that tells you a symptom. What usually happens next is that the Bloomington area parts store sells you something that directly relates to the symptom. It may or may not fix the problem. It's actually cheaper to just go to AutoChoice Service Center and get things fixed right the first time.
Remember, a fever can indicate a sinus infection or appendicitis. An antibiotic may be okay for that sinus infection, but it likely won't help your appendicitis. Is it really wise to wait around to see if the antibiotic helps when you might have appendicitis?
Part of good vehicle care is knowing where you can get a problem fixed — and fixed right. Preventive maintenance goes a long way to keeping you out of the repair shop, but eventually, we will all have a problem that needs fixing. Let's do it right the first time at AutoChoice Service Center.
I can't express how much I appreciate Auto Choice Services. I have had them repair my car on three different occasions and each time I was thoroughly impressed by how well they treated me and I always felt like I was getting a fair deal. The staff is so kind and professional, and they really go out of their way to make sure everything is taken care of. Once they even took me home and brought me back when my car was ready because I didn't have a ride. I highly recommend them to everyone I know in town who needs automotive work done. Thank you guys so much! Your work is greatly appreciated!
They don't rip you off. Super cool dudes!
These guys are awesome. They've worked on my 2003 Volkswagen Passat a few times now, and their service has been spectacular.
AutoChoice is the place you take your car and have complete and total peace of mind that it will be assessed and repaired with the highest level of professional integrity and experience. We have taken several of our cars there over the past few years and each and every interaction has been handled with top notch communication and quality work. They truly know what they're doing and they get it done without drama. I can not recommend AutoChoice highly enough!
Very honest and do great work, I have never had a bad experience with Autochoice. It is the only place I'll take my vehicles to get serviced and repaired.
These guys are by far the best shop in town. Great rates, timely service, and have always been very professional. I recommend them to anyone that has an issue with their car and the willingness to listen.
Nicest guys, best work i have ever had done in Bloomington. Auto Choice is my first choice!
This is by far the best place. Not only did the guys here save me $1000 on the repairs by being HONEST, they have been ao awesome and helpful. I have had several personal problems and they have worked with me the whole way. They have done EVERYTHING they could to get the repair done. I would recommend these guys to ANYONE who wants to be treated fairly as well as NOT be taken advantage of. Had one repair shop that (because I'm female) told me $2000 minimum and that I needed to replace every part of the brake system front and back. These guys said absolutely not and explained everything and didn't act like I'm a target because I am a girl. Very fair very good and the best place ever. I will NEVER take either if my vehicles ANYPLACE else. Would give them 10 stars if I could. These are the guys you trust with your grandmothers car! Honest, fair, and excellent service. Thanks so much!!
-Cara DeMeritt - Martinsville indiana
They've always been fantastic; I originally went to them not knowing what my issues were but kept going back because they did such a great, earnest and honest job of finding and fixing my car's issues. I've had plenty of experiences with other mechanics who try to sell me more than I need, but the Auto Choice mechanics have always been patient and fair with me, explaining what I need to fix but not pressuring me to do so if I say it's not currently in my budget. The mechanics have always been willing to show me what's wrong and help me understand my car and it's issues better if I ask questions, and I've always valued their great customer service.
They were very friendly and professional, I also very much appreciated the way Lloyd goes over the receipt with you when you pick up the car. They are also very accommodating about scheduling.
My experience with them was great. I will be going to them for any future vehicle repairs. They will
check your car out for free and tell you everything and anything that is wrong with it.
The folks here were awesome! I drove down from Indy to Bloomington to check out a used VW Beetle. I called ahead to Choice to see if they could check the car out, and they said they would work me in. At first they proposed the next day, then realized I was travelling from Indy. I arrived with the car and they got right on it. Within 45 minutes they had a list of problems and potential big problems with the car. They asked me how badly I wanted it - it was a cute convertible - but a few thousand into repairs, I could walk away. I then asked how much I owed, and they said zip. With the problems they found, they did not hook it up to the computer for engine diagnostics. That was $95, but they figured I had already heard enough. They could have done that and I would have been none the wiser. Wow! I am very impressed with their integrity, service, and professionalism. Service manager, Lloyd, was very pleasant and friendly - my wait flew by. I highly recommend this company.
I realized I needed my brakes checked after 3,000 miles on a road trip. I called on Thursday night and asked for an appointment for Friday morning. I needed all new brake pads, rotors and calipers. They showed me all of the parts and where they were damaged. They ordered the parts from three separate places, in order to get what they needed to finish the job that day. Everything was completed by 3pm and we were home by midnight. I totally trust this company and would be happy to work with them again. I found them on Yelp, with all five star reviews - well deserved -- thanks guys!
-Julia Vidani - De Pere, WI
They are amazing - it's as simple as that! They got my car in the shop and fixed in a matter of hours - after a week long struggle I had. The guys are also extremely friendly. I highly recommend them!
-Sadie - Bloomington, IN
I highly recommend Autochoice. They are top notch and hands down the best auto service in Bloomington. I have been taking my vehicles to them for a few years now. After bouncing around sideshow mechanics, I finally found a group of mechanics that knew what they were doing and furthermore that I can trust my family???s vehicles with. They are friendly, professional, and informative. They will NOT try to take advantage of you. These guys are honest and trustworthy. They communicate well and explain issues in a thorough, yet understandable manner. They will tell you the details behind the costs. At Autochoice I've consistently had good experiences and am quickly back on the road as a happy camper.
My family and I will absolutely be going back to Autochoice for any future vehicle maintenance. If you want a group of mechanics who are honest, helpful and care about their customers, you should check this place out.
-William Fallwell - Bloomington, IN
You guys are my heroes! Worth your weight in gold. "Many" years ago I had car trouble that resulted in getting kidnapped. So "NOW" any time I have car issues I'm a mess... I walked in off street today and they understood calming me not laughing @ the crazy woman. Thank you Adam, Dave and the whole gang!
These guys are TOPS in my opinion. They are no nonsense mechanics that don't feel the need to over charge. LIFE SAVERS!! The real McCoys!!! Thanks again boys!! YOU ROCK!!!
The guys were great & did a great job & even referred me to another great business owner for another job that they didnt offer. Adam the owner & Llyod especially. They even fixed something I didn't even ask for which was a surprise. Will definitely be back again.
We have been taking our Denali to AutoChoice for about 3 years. The service is always spectacular. All of the mechanics are first rate and the prices are very reasonable. I would not take my truck to anyone else in Bloomington and always recommend AutoChoice to friends and family who need service.
Best place hands down. Don't ever call or go anywhere else. I own a pt cruiser and bought a battery at walmart and they wouldn't install it. Called everywhere; autozone, oreily's and a few other places, all telling me they couldn't install. Called these guys and got the best service without a wait. I highly recommend!
I love these guys. They are reasonably priced and always willing to go the extra mile with services when needed. Their staff is courteous and friendly and they clearly explain everything to me if necessary (My automotive knowledge is only so/so).
My man Lloyd at AutoChoice took good care of me. Real fast service, good communication, the price was right, and most importantly the work they did was top notch. Love these guys, definitely coming back here for any future car troubles.
I go to these guys for all my vehicle needs. If you want honest repairs at fair prices look no further than AutoChoice!
A++ for you all, thank you for all the help. You will be doing all my work from now on.
These guys did a great job on my Tuarus. They were fast resonable and just really nice when talking to customers. They got my car in and done in one day where other guys I had to wait 5 days before I could get it in. I would recommend Auto Choice Service Center to anyone.