Can blown fuses cause the "Service Engine Soon" light to come on?

I have a 1999 Taurus. The dash lights have been going out one by one for a while (I know they need new fuses), and the last time one went out, the Service Engine Soon light came on and has stayed on - for about a month (no, haven’t changed the fuses yet).

Are the issues related, or is it a coincidence? All the fluids are fine and the electrical system is working well.

First the dash lights are controlled by 1 (one) fuse. If the fuse burns out they all go out. Your dash lights are just burning out from age. This has nothing to do with the check engine light. You need to have the computer scanned to determine why the check engine light is on.

Dartman is exactly right on all counts.

I think it depends on what you mean by “dash lights.” If you mean the dash illumination – the lights in the gauges etc. that go on when you turn on the headlights – then yes, these are usually controlled by one fuse. So if one after another of these is going out, then they are probably just burning out from age. Since they were all installed at the same time – when the car was built – they are all going to begin burning out at the same time. Warning lights can sometimes burn out at the same time, too, for the same reason.

But to answer your question, yes, a blown fuse on the engine management computer circuit can make the “check engine” or “service engine soon” light go on and stay on.

Thank you, all.

Umm, so I should have a diagnostic done?

I have been told that a local auto parts store will do the computer thing for free - are they likely to be reliable?

Part of my concern is that my car is due for an inspection this month and no matter where I have the inspections done, they seem to think that “money is no object”…

To answer your question about reliability NO. They can plug the scanner into your vehicle and pull the trouble code but that is it. Come back here with the exact code (or codes). Do not let them sell you any parts. They are unreliable at interpreting what the code means. There are a large number of qualified people on this board that will help you to understand what the code means and what your next step should be.

Thank you, Michael. Will do.


Went to the the auto parts store and the code that came up was:

P0442 (and it also said “evap system leak - small”).

I did try a new gas cap, but, of course, the light is still on…