So your check engine light just blinked 3-4 times and then went off. Are you curious why this happened? Is it something you should be worried about? Why did your check engine flash 3 or 4 times and then go off?
Check engine light flashes 3 or 4 times then goes off could be a sign of an engine misfire. It could also indicate a problem with the ignition system, fuel delivery system, or another sensor. When this happens, you should stop driving your car and solve the problem to avoid causing further damage to the engine.
The following guide shares more details on why the check engine light (CEL) flashes 3-4 times and then goes off and what you should do when this happens.
Why check engine light flashes 3 or 4 times then go off
When the check engine light blinks 3-4 times, it’s usually a sign that your car is suffering from a malfunction of some kind. This could be a cylinder misfiring, fuel delivery system, or ignition problem.
When the light flashes and then goes off and then happens again moments, then it means you have a lot of misfires going on with your car and you should have it checked by a mechanic as soon as possible.
Take your car to a qualified auto mechanic to have it diagnosed to know what’s the issue and solve it on time.
Blinking light generally means your car is suffering from a serious issue that needs your immediate attention. As such, trying to drive or operate it any further could result in more damage to the vehicle system which costs more for repairs.
For instance, the blinking light could indicate a cylinder misfire. And if not solved on time, this issue could cause catalytic converter damage which translates to costly repairs.
For this reason, it’s always a good idea to have a qualified auto mechanic check your car and resolve the underlying issues causing the CEL to appear.
For a new car, it’s normal for the check engine light to blink a few times. It does this to check monitors from the computer and it doesn’t mean there’s nothing wrong with your car.
Sometimes the light may flash 3-4 times and then never come back again as you continue driving. In this case, some people recommend not being worried or taking any system.
But we still argue you to have the system scanned for trouble codes and then look them up to discover the problem and have it fixed.
Alternatively, you can have your car towed to a mechanic to have it diagnosed for underlying issues and repaired. Otherwise, if you continue driving it you may cause further damage to it.
What does it mean when your check engine light flashes then stop?
The check engine light flashes and then turn off to indicate a misfiring cylinder. Misfiring is a critical issue that should be diagnosed and solved promptly. This is the reason why the light flashes to let you it’s a serious issue!
If you ignore a misfire, it can cause catalytic converter damage which can result in costly damages and repairs.
Misfires can be caused by various issues including worn-out spark plugs, a faulty cat converter, vacuum leaks, leaking gasket or seal, a faulty emission system, and more.
Whatever the cause could be, it’s best to have your auto mechanic scan your car computer for diagnostic codes to help them easily find out the cause of the misfire and fix it on time before it grows into a more serious issue.
What does it mean when your check engine light flashes 3 times?
When the check engine light flashes 3 times and then goes off, it’s an indication that a diagnostic trouble code has been generated and then stored in your vehicle’s computer memory.
However, this is just one potential cause and there are possible reasons for the light to flash 3 times. Some of these additional reasons may include an open or loose ground connection, a bad sensor, incorrect voltage reference, and so on.
The light may also blink thrice in the case of a new car. As we explained earlier, this means the check monitors from the computer and it doesn’t mean there’s nothing wrong with your car.
If your car isn’t new and you see the light blink 3 times, have the car scanned for trouble codes by your local auto parts shop and look at what problem they present. Alternatively, you can take it to your dealer for diagnosis and repair.
What does it mean when your check engine light flashes 4 times?
If the check engine flashes 4 times and then stops, it could mean a serious problem is happening with your car engine system
This is something you shouldn’t ignore since it could cause serious problems with your engine or transmission.
For instance, your vehicle computer could have detected a misfire great enough to cause permanent damage to your car catalytic converters—this is a pricey component that should be repaired ASAP to avoid more expensive damages.
The light flashing and stopping may also be forecasting an imminent failure. This is another reason why you should never ignore the flashing CEL.
If the light flashes 4 times and then stops, STOP driving your car and have the underlying fault diagnosed and repaired by an auto mechanic.
What does it mean when your check engine light flashes 5 times?
The most common reason why the check engine light flashes 5 times is the key position—i.e., if you turn the key to start your car but don’t crack it, then the light blinks 5 times and then goes off.
Why does this happen? You may wonder…this is simply because you turn the key to “start” instead of run. If you simply turn the key to run, the light will stop blinking.
Another likely cause for CVEL to blink 5 times is when the car battery has just been disconnected. When you reconnect the battery and then go ahead and restart your car, the CEL will flash 5 times and then go off.
What does it mean when your check engine light flashes 10 times?
Your check engine light flashing 10 times simply means the light has been on for a little while and then went off. The number of flashes usually corresponds to the number of times the engine warning light was on.
The CEL flashing 10 times may also indicate a pending trouble code stored in the vehicle’s computer memory.
A mechanical or electrical malfunction in the powertrain control module (PCM) or the wiring associated with the PCM may also cause the flashlight to blink up to 10 times.
It is good to scan your vehicle computer for trouble codes to try and understand the issue behind the flashing light and have it fixed by an auto mechanic.“If you’re experiencing issues with your check engine light flashing then turning off, you might find our articles on resetting the light without a scanner and low coolant levels helpful. Our article on resetting the light without a scanner offers step-by-step instructions for resetting the light using various methods. Meanwhile, our article on low coolant levels explains how low coolant levels can trigger the check engine light and what steps you can take to address this issue.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Check engine light flashing then going off and then flashing again means a bad engine misfire. When it stops blinking, gently drive your car to your mechanic to have it scanned for error codes and the problem is solved. Or you can have it towed to the mechanic. If you continue driving the car with flashing CEL, you’ll turn a small problem into a big one that’s costlier or even requires part replacements.
Absolutely! A blinking check engine light usually indicates a misfire. If you continue operating your vehicle with this light flashing, you may cause costly damage to your car engine system. The best way to handle this light is to take your car to a mechanic to have it diagnosed and the issue resolved to avoid causing more damage and costly repairs to your car.
No, we don’t recommend driving home with a blinking check engine light. Unlike steady CEL, blinking/flashing CEL usually indicates a serious issue with your car engine system, that needs immediate attention before it becomes a big problem. The best option is to pull over immediately or have the car towed to a mechanic for diagnosis and repair. if the CEL flashes and then stops, you may gently drive the car home but make sure your mechanic diagnoses and repairs it for any underlying issues.
Your check engine light flashing 3-4 times is usually an indication of an engine misfire. It could also mean you have a bad fuel delivery system, ignition system, or any other malfunctioning sensor. Blinking light generally means a serious issue, so we advise you to get your mechanic to diagnose the car for any issues causing the light to blink and solve them before they can grow into bigger problems that cost more to fix.
The check engine light flashing means some trouble codes would have been stored in your computer’s memory. So you’ll need to have your car scanned for these codes and then check what issue they translate to. This will give your mechanic clues on where to start looking, helping them narrow down on the car diagnosis and repair.