Published by SekurIT, April 2016
The 2016 SekurIT® OBD-II Health Index™ of common
Check engine problems, and repairs found that 2015 saw virtually no change in car repair costs with a 1.5% increase in parts* costs offset by a 4% decrease in average labor costs. Car repair costs were also down across each U.S. region with the Northeast experiencing the biggest drop – down 6.5%.
*parts costs based on OE parts pricing plus markup
According to SekurIT, the five most common problems that triggered the “check engine” light on in 2015 were a faulty oxygen sensor, catalytic converter, ignition coil and spark plug, loose fuel cap and thermostat. They range in cost from $15 on average to replace a gas cap to $1,100 for a catalytic converter. Click to see the 25 most common check engine repairs.
Other key findings
Vehicle age also affects frequency, cost, and type of repairs. This Index looked at cars that were new, 5-, 10-, 15- and 20 years old. The model year 2006 vehicles accounted for 10% of check engine light incidents in the calendar year 2015 while less than 1/100th of a percent of the model year 2016 vehicles had check engine light issues.
- The most common reason a check engine light comes on in a brand new vehicle is a loose gas cap (46% of recommended repairs for MY2016 vehicles).
- The most common fix on a 2006 vehicle is the catalytic converter (10% of repairs).
The most expensive repair seen in 2015 by SekurIT’s network was “replace the engine,” costing $7,800. However, evidencing the notion that drivers should not panic when their car’s “check engine” light comes on, some of the least expensive repairs include tighten or replace gas cap, correct transmission fluid level and replace the radiator cap. These fixes can cost as little as $15 or less.
New to 10 most common repairs in 2015 were “replace evaporative emissions (EVAP) purge control valve ” and “replace EVAP purge solenoid.” These are both important parts designed to help make sure your car is not emitting too many pollutants. When they are not working properly, they will cause your car’s check engine light to turn on and keep you from passing an emissions test.