I have a 1998 Subaru Forrester that I bought used a few years ago. I love this car and it runs great. About a year ago the check engine light came on and so I took it to Pep Boys and paid $80.00 for a scan which showed problems with the EGR Valve and Back Pressure Transducer. I asked the mechanics what I should do. They said that the problem was mainly with the emissions system and that my car is basically polluting the air more but that it is not dangerous to drive. But they said I should fix it because otherwise the check engine light won’t go off. However, after I left them the light was off and it stayed off until last week when it came on again. This past week the light has been on most days except for yesterday when it was off all day. I am not sure if this is related to the same emissions problem. Should I pay my Subaru dealer $50.00 to do another scan? What if they tell me it is the same problem? I don’t have the $500.00 it will supposedly cost to fix this.
The check engine light is an early warning system. It may come on for MANY reasons, and not just for the reasons the Pep Boys guys told you about. Don’t assume the light is on now for the same reasons(s).
The only way to know why the light is on is to have the codes read. Many auto parts stores will read them for free.
Whatever the reason, it will get worse if you ignore it.
You can buy a code reader for the price of a reading you pay a shop for. Using the code reader is as simple as plugging in a hair dryer. You could bring the trouble codes here for advice.
Next time the light comes on how are you going to know if it is the same old thing or if driving your car will cause damage or if your engine may suddenly stop on the highway or the brakes fail. Having a working CEL is important to your life and to your car. As it is it is not really working since you are ignoring it. Do your car, your self and society a favor. Fix the problem.
“I am not sure if this is related to the same emissions problem.” And you’ll never know until you get the cods read again, especially since it has been a year. $80.00 for a code reading? Your getting ripped off. You can buy a code reader for that. Many other auto parts stores will read the codes for free. Post them here for a better diagnosis. The CEL lights for many reasons, and you’ll never know why until the code is read and analyzed.
I am told Autozone reads your codes for free, then come back here and tell us the code numbers. E.g. - P0335 or whatever, and the smart people here will have some ideas, in most cases.