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Why is car shaking and the check engine light is flashing?

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New User

Apr 13, 2013, 12:35 AM

Post #1 of 3 (12148 views)
Why is car shaking and the check engine light is flashing? Sign In

Okay so I have a 2003 Hyundai Accent that has about 90k miles on it. Last month, my dad and i were on the freeway driving 60 and the car started shaking pretty badly and stopped after a while. we got worried and took it to a shop and they said it might be because of our transmission oil being low. so they fixed that. when we drove it after that, it was perfectly fine for a month
then, yesterday the car started to have this jerking affect just like it did before. we were driving on the freeway. but it even happened again when we were driving 30mph on a residential street. and then, it got really bad yesterday. we've drove it on a regular road and it started jerking and the check engine light started to flash while it was jerking. then both of them stopped. we stopped driving but when we started the car later that night, the check engine light went on again but this time it stayed there.
today, my dad drove it, the check engine light is still there but no shaking. and we got gas and when we started the car again, the light went off.

so im really worried, we're going to the shop tommorow and i want to know all the possible causes so maybe i can tell them what i know so far. we drive on the freeway for 15 minutes 5 times a week so im scared it will shake again and cause us get into a accident. what can be wrong? please help, thanks

Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Apr 13, 2013, 3:07 AM

Post #2 of 3 (12103 views)
Re: Why is car shaking and the check engine light is flashing? Sign In

The "check engine" light is an indicator for a system that monitors many electronic functions in the system, also called the "malfunction indicator lamp" (MIL). It can come on for any of hundreds of different causes from any of the systems that the computer monitors. Some are very important and can lead to further component or engine damage and some are emissions related not as serious but still a problem and need to be repaired.

Your first step is to have the computer scanned to retrieve the trouble codes that were set when the check engine light came on. Those codes will give you specific information about what the computer saw and will get you pointed in the right direction to find your problem. With a 1996 or newer and some 95 cars and you have an AutoZone or Advanced auto parts in your area, they will read them for free. Once you have these code numbers, we can be a lot more specific about what your problem may be.


We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.

Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Apr 13, 2013, 6:38 AM

Post #3 of 3 (12083 views)
Re: Why is car shaking and the check engine light is flashing? Sign In

When was the last tune up done?
Do you know the service history on this vehicle?
1.5 or 1.6L?

If the check engine light is flashing, that means the engine has a catalyst damaging misfire. The computer is warning you to stop driving or you'll melt the converter.

Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Apr 13, 2013, 6:40 AM)

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