Check engine light that never goes out!

I have a 2001 VW Jetta that is serviced regularly - but not by a VW dealer. As I approached the 100,000 mile mark, the check engine light went on and never turned off (inspite of a new catalytic converter, tune up, and a total of $1,000 in repairs over the past year.) My mechanic has no explanation, having exhausted every possibility. Is this check engine light some kind of elbow-twisting by the manufacturer to get you back to the dealer??

Have the codes read for you and post them back here. They will be in the format of [P1234] Many auto part stores will read them for free. Try Advanced auto parts if you have one near by. Post a reply to your message with this information. I suspect we will be able to help you out.

Remember that the code does not tell you want is wrong. It only tells you what signal the computer is reading is not right. The next step will be to find out why that code was tripped.

Are you really seeing a Check Engine Light? Some vehicles have a second “Service Engine” light that tells you that it is time to get the ashtrays dusted or whatever. If it really is a Check Engine light, there should be a code readable with a $70 scanner that your mechanic surely has one of. It will tell him/you/us what the Engine Control Unit thinks is wrong.

In one sense, he’s sort of right. It can be very difficult to get the blasted thing to go out. But cases where it actually can not be extinguished in a car that is operating properly are rare to non-existent. Call him and ask what the code(s) associated with your CEL is/are. He probably has it/them memorized by now.

Any local VW independents? They usually know the drill with VW’s and make ownership pleasant. I owned two VW’s and found ownership uneventful and no better or worse than Honda/Toyota I owned.

Sounds like your car needs new eyes.

Thank you all for responding. It did turn out that the catalytic converter, which was installed last year is bad - under warranty, though - so happy ending here! Thanks again.