Service Emission System – What Does It Mean & How to Fix It

Automobiles would have been like a “time bomb” waiting to explode if not for the help of the dashboard signals. Several dashboard warning lights convey various messages to a car owner regularly.

However, understanding and acting on the message is the driver’s responsibility.

Therefore, the “Service emission system” warning light is a signal every car owner needs to understand in order to avert unexpected problems.

So, what is the role of the emission system, and why would a car suddenly request an emission system service? Let’s delve into the answers to these critical questions in the following sections.

What does service emission system mean?

The service emission system signal means a car is running with a faulty emission system that allows air pollution beyond the federal government’s permissible standard; hence, the system needs mechanical attention.

Meanwhile, the emission system is a group of components that work in synergy to help keep the exhaust gas as minimal as possible.

This process requires that the fuel is properly burnt within the internal combustion engine, and the residue released through the exhaust pipe is reduced to the barest minimum without harming people and the environment.

Therefore, when your car’s dash suddenly displays the service emission system light, it means the system’s ideal operation has been compromised and needs immediate rectification. This signal comes along with several other symptoms.

The malfunctions let you know that a serious problem exists, and it can escalate if you don’t do the needful within the expected time frame. Of course, with this light on, you won’t pass the emission inspection test.

service emission system light

Is it safe to drive with check emission system?

Generally, the check emission system warning signal does not necessarily affect the normal operations of a vehicle. In that case, it is possible to drive with the warning light staring at you all day long.

However, it is not safe to drive with service emission system in a 2020 3.0 Duramax engine. Even though it doesn’t hinder the car’s normal operations, the light may be drawing your attention to check out an imminent problem that may likely result in severe damage.

A faulty emission system can reduce a car’s engine performance capacity drastically resulting in costly engine damage in the long run. Besides the damages it can cause to the car, a faulty emission system is a threat to the life of people on the streets.

Is emission service necessary?

Emission system service is extremely important. In fact, it is one of the core aspects of routine vehicle maintenance. It helps to keep the emission system clean and void of substances that are capable of harming the car’s engine, other people, and the environment.

Engaging in a regular emission system service will help to keep your car’s engine running perfectly without any glitches. It will also help the overall performance of the engine and keep it efficient always.

Furthermore, toxic exhaust release can be seriously harmful to humans and the ecosystem. Therefore, neglecting an emission system service will automatically expose the people around you and the environment to the negative effects of air pollution.

Therefore, performing an emission system service is not only beneficial to your car; it also extends to ensuring a healthy environment for you and everyone around you. So, try as much as possible to make it a priority.

Read Also: Best Automotive Smoke Machine

service emission system Check

How do you fix service emission system error message?

There are 3 simple ways to fix a service emission system warning signal issue in a car. The approaches are basically a migration from simple to complex.

So, ensure you start with the most basic method before advancing if the issue is not resolved at the initial stage. The following solutions will help you fix your car’s emission system service warning light issue.

Drive normally for a while.

As simple as this may seem, driving your car normally (nothing more) can help reset the service emission system in a Ford Escape 2005, especially if it suddenly triggers on due to a slight electrical malfunction.

Sometimes, the complexity of operations at work simultaneously in a car can suddenly trigger the service emission system in a 2020 Duramax engine without any implication.

In this case, it will only amount to a waste of time, energy, and money if you immediately go to a professional auto mechanic to diagnose the problem (even though it may be necessary later).

So, if your service emission light shows up early in the morning when you start your car, simply drive out of the garage and go on with your day. It will eventually reset itself if that’s a slight electrical malfunction.

Turn the car off/on three times.

Does it seem like the first approach isn’t working? Now, you may want to try something different on how to reset service emission system.

In some cases, driving around for 10 – 30 minutes can reset a malfunctioning dashboard light; however, if the service emission light remains after a while, drive to a safe location and park.

After that, turn off the engine and turn it on again up to three consecutive times. This should reset the dashboard light if it is triggered by a malfunction.

This is pretty simple, but it works for slight electrical malfunctions. It simply cuts off power and resets malfunctioning electrical components, including the dashboard lights. Kindly try this approach before moving on to something more complex.

Disconnect the battery’s positive cable

Again, did the second approach fail to fix the service emission light issue? Now is the time to disconnect the source of electrical power to the dashboard lights. So, this time around, turn off the car and remove the key.

Then, get out of the car and open the hood to locate the vehicle’s battery. After that, disconnect the cable that connects to the positive battery terminal with the aid of a wrench.

This will cut off electrical power from the dashboard lights. However, ensure to be extremely careful while disconnecting the battery’s cable.

Thereafter, get into the car and insert the key and turn it to “ON” position. It will help to exhaust any leftover electrical power. Stay put for a few seconds and get back to reconnect the battery cable.

Once you reconnect the cable, get back into the car and start the engine. There you go! The service emission warning light is gone. This is a simple way to rectify service emission system in a 2021 3.0 Duramax engine.

Consult an expert auto mechanic

Lastly, if the previous recommendations above did not rectify the warning light, you most likely have a more serious issue to deal with in your car. So, the best thing is to drive straight to an expert auto mechanic’s shop right away.

Explain your ordeal to the professional auto mechanic and let him diagnose the problem and fix it as soon as possible. This will only cost a few dollars, especially if it doesn’t require replacing any faulty components.

How much does it cost to fix emission control system?

Fixing a service emission system in a 2018 Duramax engine does not cost a fortune. However, the general cost depends on the car’s make and model. The cost of fixing such a fault in many cars is estimated at around $175 – $200.

Meanwhile, kindly note that replacing two or more faulty components in the emission system will impact the cost of repair compared to the replacement of one part. In any case, replacing the exhaust system will certainly not cost a fortune.

So, if you have a faulty emission system, resulting in a constant display of the service emission message or warning signal on your car’s dash, kindly ensure to rectify the problem ASAP.

There’s no point gambling with a malfunction that can result in severe damage to your car’s engine and to other people out there. Besides, it can be frustrating to fail an emission test because of a minor fault that you could have resolved in a moment.

Meanwhile, the federal government is not about to step down on the emission test standard; hence, you must do all you can to keep your car in a good condition always.

Final Words

Owning a car comes with great responsibility. In fact, it is easier to buy a car than to keep one running on the road perpetually. However, irrespective of the demands, never joke with a service emission system warning signal.

In some cases, the service emission system in a Chevy 2500 can be triggered by a slight electrical malfunction; at other times, it may be the result of a faulty emission system. So, ensure to implement the recommended solutions in this article.

Significant is, always remember to start from simple to complex. In any case, even if it results in consulting an expert auto technician, ensure to schedule an appointment ASAP as delay can be dangerous.

Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a seasoned automotive technician for the past 9 years, and a technical writer. He loves writing about auto professional repair guides, DIY repair guides, and buyer’s guide. After spending six years in the automotive workshop, he decided to impact his knowledge to people aside his domain, and he has achieved this by centering his Automotive writing skills on REPAIRS.

Recent Posts