How to Clear the Service Engine Light on a GM Car

by Michael Rippetoe

When the check engine light comes on everyone wonders why. Some just want to know how to get the light to go off. Either way, the process for resetting that light on a General Motors (GM) vehicle is the same for most cars. The light comes on because the computer in the car has found something wrong with one of the many sensors on the engine. While the check engine light should not be taken lightly, there is an easy, cost-effective way to reset the light.

Step 1

Turn the vehicle off if it is running.

Step 2

Open the hood to the car or truck and locate the vehicle battery. For some vehicles the battery is located in the trunk or in one of the front wheel wells.

Step 3

Remove the negative terminal from the battery by loosing the bolt on the cable end.

Step 4

Cover the cable end with the dry wash cloth and place away from the battery post.

Step 5

Allow the vehicle to sit for 10 minutes. Resetting the light normally takes only two minutes, but 10 minutes will allow the computer to reset itself and go back to the factory settings for engine management.

Step 6

Reconnect the negative battery terminal and start the vehicle. The light should be out. If it is not out, or comes back on, take the vehicle to a mechanic to have the computer scanned for trouble codes.

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