Check engine light

I have a 2001 Toyota Corolla that somehow I got to pass inspection with a reset and a bottle of fuel injection cleaner from Auto Zone “guaranteed to pass” but it turned that light off for about an hour so it could pass but in November got to deal with it again. I am unemployed and the good thing about it is I have time to try and fix things myself, but not money to take the car to the dealership, any suggestions?

You need to get the codes read from the computer to find out why the check engine light is on. It could be anything. It could be an Oxygen sensor or a faulty fuel cap. It could be an airflow senser or a catalytic converter. You have no way of knowing until you get the codes from the computer. You can either buy the read-out device yourself or you can take it to a mechanic for a professional diagnosis. I recommend taking it to a mechanic for a professional diagnosis.

Some auto parts stores (e.g. Advance Auto) will read the codes for you. Get the actual codes (e.g. P1234) and post back here for more help. Don’t just get the parts guys interpretation of the codes.

so what state are you talking about?

just curious?

in lies the true answer.

I might add that there is no reason you need to take it to a dealer. Even when the car is under warranty, you do not need to take the car to the dealer for service. You do need to have records proving that the prescribed maintenance was done to protect your warranty, but unless the dealer is going to do the work for free you are allowed by law to take it elsewhere.

Dealers are no better (or worse) than independent mechanics but they are almost always more expensive.