Did you ever have to bring your vehicle to a repair shop because one of those pesky warning lights or messages suddenly appeared on your instrument panel as you were driving?  On most modern vehicles, there are warning lights for the engine management / emission control system, hydraulic brake system, anti lock brake system, traction control system, so on and so on.  When your vehicle is diagnosed by a shop, a diagnostic computer scanner is used to communicate with the computer in your vehicle to read trouble codes.  These trouble codes tell the technician what component or system experienced a malfunction or failure.  For instance, one very common culprit for a “service engine soon” or “check engine” malfunction light is an oxygen sensor.  You may wonder, what exactly does an oxygen sensor do, and why does it need replacing?  Those of us who work in the repair industry know what an oxygen sensor does, but we sometimes forget that the average driver may not.  Well, an oxygen sensor’s function is to measure the “contents” of the exhaust leaving your engine.  It tells the vehicle’s computer what the ratio of unburned oxygen and fuel is, which assists the computer in adjusting the fuel mixture.  The reason that oxygen sensors go bad is because impurities in the air and in fuel build up on the sensor preventing it from functioning properly.  So, like many other components on your vehicle, they eventually need replacing.  So, we are open to discussion about any questions you might have about what a particular sensor does and how it affects your vehicle, and, we will happily “decode” any automotive lingo that might leave you scratching your head….

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