BMWs are stylish, luxurious, and known for their high performance, but these sporty vehicles may experience vehicle issues from time to time. It may be something as little as a loose gas cap. The check engine warning light will illuminate on your dash if your BMW's fuel cap is left open (or damaged). Whenever this warning light comes up, the first thing you should check is the gas cap!
Dangers of a Loose Fuel Cap
The fuel cap for your BMW is responsible for keeping the gasoline locked in the fuel tank. The fuel cap seals the opening of the gas vessel while preventing debris, dirt, and dust from contaminating the gas. Additionally, the seal prevents the fumes from escaping and getting outside or into your cabin. When a vehicle's fuel cap becomes loose, the fuel vapors will escape. Fuel vapors may be harmful to your health, but it's also flammable. And under certain conditions, it may ignite, causing grave danger.
Furthermore, when the air mixes with combustion gases, it creates smog and other forms of pollution that contribute to the ozone layer. This is a huge environmental concern, which is why vehicles built after 1996 are required to have EPA-certified sensors to trigger a warning when fuel vapors discharge. These sensors are responsible for turning on your vehicle's check engine light, as well as sending a diagnostic problem code identifying an emissions leak.
Signs of a Loose or Damaged Fuel Cap
- When you turn the gas cap, there is no clicking sound - Most fuel caps make a snapping sound when it locks into place. If your vehicle's fuel cap is not audibly signaling this, you may need to get it replaced.
- Check engine light on
- A lingering smell of gasoline
- Lower gas mileage
If you need your check engine light diagnosed and/or require repairs, please come by Mellow Motors or call us at (415) 548-2766 today! Our technicians proudly service various makes, including BMWs.