The Check Engine Light and the Catalytic Converter

One reason why the check engine light will illuminate on the dashboard is that the catalytic converter has gone bad. Stringer Auto Repair can replace the catalytic converter when it needs it, which is usually once your automobile is 10 years old or older. We are going to list the signs that the catalytic converter is malfunctioning below. Note that one of these signs is a check engine warning.

Burning Sulfur Exhaust Odors

The most common problem with a catalytic converter is that it gets clogged by sulfur and carbon deposits. When this happens, the hot exhaust that flows into the catalytic converter burns the sulfur deposits and causes your exhaust to smell like rotten eggs.

Dark/Black Exhaust Smoke

A faulty catalytic converter may also be unable to treat your engine’s exhaust and remove the harmful emissions. When this happens, the exhaust tends to be dark or black rather than clear. This is also a sign that your engine has a rich fuel mixture being burned in the combustion chamber.

Engine Performance Lag

As we mentioned above, the catalytic converter can be clogged by carbon and sulfur deposits. When this happens, the exhaust can get stuck in the combustion chamber. Unfortunately, this will prevent fresh combustion and your engine will lag. You will also notice that your acceleration lags.

Reduced Fuel Economy

As the engine struggles to run with exhaust in the combustion chamber, it will burn through fuel more quickly. Consequently, the malfunctioning catalytic converter will indirectly cause a reduction in your automobile’s fuel economy. This can be frustrating with gas prices what they are today.

Overheating Converter

As the catalytic converter struggles to treat the exhaust, excess exhaust will pool in the converter, as well. When this happens, the catalytic converter gets too hot. This heat radiates underneath your automobile and into the engine causing the engine to overheat.

Dashboard Warning Light

Finally, as we mentioned in the introduction to this blog post, a clogged catalytic converter can cause the check engine light to turn on because of the issues we have discussed above. For example, if the engine is struggling to perform, system sensors will report errors to the engine control unit. This is the main computer chip that turns on the check engine light.

Stringer Auto Repair in Johnstown, OH, would be happy to inspect your catalytic converter and replace it if it is malfunctioning or clogged. Call us today to schedule a convenient service appointment.

Photo by warut1 from Getty Images via Canva Pro

Accessibility Toolbar