The auto maintenance website CarMD has issued its second-annual vehicle health index report, revealing the most common problems associated with the "check engine" light according to data gathered from around the country.
Interestingly, the website noted that many of the problems were simple, or could easily be prevented. The top two problems were a faulty oxygen sensor and a loose gas cap. The latter problem is easy to fix, while the oxygen sensor actually pays for itself due to the fact that a faulty sensor negatively impacts fuel economy and costs drivers money at the pump.
The third and fourth most common issues illustrate how ignoring routine auto maintenance can lead to more expensive car repairs. These two spots are held by bad catalytic converters and faulty ignition coils, respectively. However, CarMD points out that both of these are often the result of drivers going too long without replacing their spark plugs. Spark plugs are typically included with tune-ups, but many drivers ignore this and end up costing themselves money. In fact, bad spark plugs were the sixth most common issue on the list.