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Description: Second-generation onboard diagnostics, more commonly known as OBDII, is a sophisticated onboard computer system that was first used on some 1994 and 1995 model vehicles. Since 1996, it is used on all makes and models and cars and light trucks. OBDII uses a network of sensors to monitor operating conditions.

Purpose: The application of OBDII technology has been mandated in order to keep tighter reins on vehicle emissions. In addition, OBDII brings about certain standards intended to help streamline the diagnostic process, regardless of the make of vehicle. The system also alerts you with a Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL), indicating that the system has detected a problem, which could cause excessive emissions. This light is usually labeled SERVICE ENGINE SOON or CHECK ENGINE. If the light appears, you should have its cause investigated by a professional technician at your earliest opportunity. If the light flashes, the condition is more severe and must be checked out immediately to prevent damage to the catalytic converter.

Maintenance Tips/Suggestions: Have Kirtec Auto Services perform the routine maintenance as recommended in your owner’s manual. The onboard computer, otherwise know as the powertrain control module, stores a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) when it detects a problem in one of the monitored circuits. A professional technician can access this information using a scan tool connected to the vehicle’s Data Link Connector (DLC). Although many DTC’s are sensor-related, it does not necessarily indicate a faulty sensor. There may be problems in that sensor’s circuit, or there may be several interrelated problems.

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