Loss of power while driving

I have a 1995 Isuzu Rodeo, it is 2 wheel drive, 4 cylinder and 5 speed manual transmission with about 162,000 miles on it. Once it’s up to speed in either

4th or 5th gear and I’m maintaining the speed the engine will lose power and the check engine light will come on briefly. If I press the gas harder or let up entirely the light goes out and the engine returns to normal. It doesn’t matter what speed I’m at (I’ve had it occur anywhere from 40 mph to 75 mph) and it doesn’t always happen, but it happens frequently enough that I’m worried about it.

Anyone have any ideas?

Is all your routine maintenance up to date, like spark plugs, cap & rotor, ignition wires, fuel filter, air filter?

That CEL (check engine light) is just a kid in class waving her hand trying to get you attention because she has the answer. You need to have the codes read. Some places will read them for FREE. Try Autozone or Advanced Auto Parts. Get the exact code (like P0123) not just their translation into English and post it back here.

Regarding warning lights:

  1. if the coolant temp light comes on, shut off the engine ASAP

  2. if the oil warning light comes on, shut off the engine ASAP

  3. if a FLASHING MIL/CEL comes on, shut off the engine ASAP

    ASAP means driving to the berm of the highway right now and not waiting for the next exit.

But if the MIL/CEL is not flashing, then it’s not an urgent indicator.

the problem with the CEL is that it only stays on for a moment, when it loses power and then goes off when I give it more gas or take my foot off the pedal entirely. I’ve taken it to my mechanic and the light wouldn’t come on (isn’t that always the case) so they couldn’t read the code.

When the CEL comes on a Diagnostic Trouble Code will be set. That code should still be there after the CEL goes out. So the next time this happens have the ECM scanned for codes and post them back here. The DTC will point the mechanic toward the engine system that needs attention. If the trouble is not happening at the time, diagnostic parts replacement might be necessary.