If you own a Toyota Prius, irrespective of the model number, you must be aware of a very important feature known as the check engine light. The dashboard of the car displays an indicator light that warns the driver in case of mishaps in the engine.
Resetting this light is important for every driver, and the best part is, you can do it yourself! How? Keep reading through to know everything you need to know about checking the engine light and how you can reset it.
What Is A Check Engine Light?
Check engine light can be loosely translated as a warning signal situated on the dashboard of the car. The sensors trigger in case of a problem in the engine, and the light blinks, confusing the driver. The exact reason for its blinking is known after proper inspection.
Check engine in a Toyota Prius is a part of the OBD-II of the central system and indicates issues with the emissions system. Therefore, it can be described as a part of the emissions system, and the light is basically an indicator of trouble inside it.
When Does The Light Blink?
A check engine light is not defined by any particular color as it differs from car to car. But one thing is certain: it’s a signal that anything is wrong with an engine.
- It blinks if there is a serious issue in the engine and requires immediate inspection—the blinking cones to a larger issue such as malfunctioning or severe misfiring.
- A static or still light is indicative of a trivial situation that doesn’t require immediate attention.
Some common reasons to check engine repair includes-
- Faulty or loose gas cap- Fuels circulate inside the tank system, and the gas cap prevents the vapor from escaping. If the cap loses, fuels will evaporate. To stop evaporation, the check light will flash, indicating the loss of vapor.
- Damaged or dirty oxygen sensor- Measurement of fuel entering the engine is required to determine the quantity of fuel to run the engine. A dirty or damaged oxygen sensor will result in decreased system performance and a lower air-to-fuel ratio. That is when the indicator would flash to have a look at the emission system for cleaning or repair.
- Faulty catalytic converter- It is an integral part of the emissions system that converts toxic gases into less harmful gas. A faulty catalytic converter will reduce your car’s mileage and efficiency, so the light indicator indicates repair.
- Repairing of spark and emission wires- Changing the wiring is vital for your car’s maintenance. In case you forgot to change the wiring, the check indicator will flash the light for its replacement.
These are the hand-picked reasons for the light indicator’s warning. Now that you know its importance let us dive into the process of resetting the check engine light for Prius.
Should You Reset Your Check Engine Light?
You might be wondering if resetting your Prius check engine light is a good idea? The engine light stores all the data, probably diagnostic data that contains error codes. Since the light indicator is a part of the engine system, the error codes can corrupt the entire engine.
To avoid engine damage, you will have to reset the system. Doing so, the error will be erased from the engine, and it will start afresh. There are many ways to reset the light depending on different Prius models.
Is There A Way To Reset The Prius Check Engine Light?
- As you turn on the car, hold down the brakes.
- Press the odometer trip reset button located on the right-hand side of the steering wheel while pressing the brake.
- Disconnect the battery while pressing the ODO button.
- It will warm the car. After doing so, keep applying the wheel against the break and turn on the car.
- After this, the ODO meter will display dashed lines similar to ‘____’
- When these lines reach the right side after the end of the countdown, 00000 will be flashed by the ODO trip button.
- Now the engine is reset.
How Can You Reset Using A Scan Tool?
- Turn on your car’s ignition switch and connect a scanning tool to the OBD-II (onboard diagnostic connector) situated below the steering section.
- In the scanning tool, you will see a ‘read’ button which will show you the error codes.
- Now press the ‘erase’ button to remove the codes, which will turn off the ignition light.
- Make sure you’ve turned off all the accessories while resetting.
Interpret the meaning of the error codes so that you can repair the car accordingly. Afterward, the check engine light on your Prius will reset.
When You Reset The Check Engine Light, Does It Take A Long Time?
It is quite a tedious task to reset the check engine light. Some patience is required because it takes approx. 15-20 cycles to reset the light. Meaning you will have to turn on and off the car for these many cycles.
Otherwise, you would need to drive about 100 miles. However, it requires a lot of skill to continue driving at a slow pace with the indicator light on.
Which Models Are Suitable For Checking Engine Lights To Reset?
You can reset your Toyota Prius if you own any model between 2004 to 2010. These models are reset by the same odometer technique mentioned above.
When Should You Call For Professional Help?
You usually wouldn’t need a mechanic by following these basic steps, yet if the engine light doesn’t turn off and the problem persists, call Toyota’s service center. You can also call your local mechanic in case of minor trouble.
Owning a Prius is the best decision because of its multiple features and the check engine light is one of them. It helps you in monitoring the defects and issues in the engine system of the car.
It is quite easy yet time-consuming to reset the light yourself. Nevertheless, you can reset the light by following this guide, or you can also seek professional help in case of trouble.