What Does It Mean To Have Engine Power is Reduced Warning Light?
Most of the time, the reduced engine power light on is a warning that indicates there’s been a limit to your car’s performance.
When there is a system failure, your car’s powertrain control module also known as the car’s primary computer will trigger the reduced power mode (safe mode).
When this happens, in some cases, the car will be rendered undrivable. Since the reduced engine power light can come up for quite a number of reasons, you must be able to track down the exact cause.
If you happen not to have your car checked and repaired properly, the reduced engine power light will illuminate again, driving your vehicle into safe mode.
There are several other instances where the reduced power illuminates in response to underlying causes. If you’re a concerned GM vehicle owner (Buick, Chevy e.t.c), you can refer to your car owner’s manual for more information on what the reduced engine power light on means for your particular model.
Causes of Reduced Engine Power Light On?
This is more like asking what’s the reason behind the check engine light.
There are many reasons that could trigger the reduced engine power light coupled with the fact the GM’s fail-safe strategies have changed over the years. The reduced power Illumination can be triggered by a problem based on the model and year of your vehicle.
Looking on the bright side, there are uniform problems that trigger the reduced engine power light regardless of the model or year. Listed below are some of the known causes of the warning light in your vehicle.
- There’s a problem with the throttle actuator control
- Your throttle position sensor is bad
- Engine control unit problem
- Bad wiring
- Faulty oxygen sensors
- Bad cooling system
Bad Throttle Actuator Control
This is one of the universal triggers of the reduced engine power light on your vehicle. The throttle actuator control (TAC) is used by most modern GM vehicles in place of the conventional throttle linkage and body.
This innovation can be dated back to the year 1997 when it was first introduced on the C5 Corvette.
Right in the throttle actuator control system, the driver’s acceleration desire is determined by two accelerator pedal position sensors (APP sensors) which are monitored by the powertrain control module (PCM).
Once there is a failure in this throttle body, or in situations where the throttle body gets dirty, the reduced engine power light can be triggered.
Bad Throttle Position Sensor
The job of the throttle position sensor is to inform the vehicle computer of the current position of the gas pedal. Then the computer utilizes the provided information to estimate the sufficient amount of fuel and air to be directed to the engine.
The throttle position sensor is also responsible for the control of gear shifting of your vehicle. This suggests that when this sensor develops a fault, your car will be prevented from changing gears.
In this case, the reduced engine power light will be triggered to attempt to augment the power limitation of your car.
Engine Control Unit Problem
One essential part of the vehicle computer is the engine control unit. This component helps control and regulate many other systems of the vehicle, including the car’s drivetrain.
When this crucial part of the vehicle is faulty, the reduced engine power Illumination will immediately be triggered as well as the check engine light.
In this case, you should have your car diagnosed and attended to immediately as it is a critical issue.
When you have damaged or exposed wires, they can cause problems with any of the above-mentioned components of your vehicle and this will trigger the reduced engine power light.
One other culprit can be a loose wiring crimp. When tracking wiring problems, make sure to refer to a professional mechanic as they can be tricky to track down.
Faulty Oxygen Sensors
The measure of the richness or leanness of the exhaust gas exiting the exhaustion chamber of your vehicle is carried out by the oxygen sensors.
The information gotten from this analysis is utilized by the vehicle’s computer to adjust the fuel shunted to the engine. Picture this component of the vehicle failing and you may have either too little or too much fuel sent to the engine.
Although a faulty oxygen sensor will trigger a check engine light, it is also a possible cause for the reduced engine power light warning.
Bad Cooling System
For some GM vehicles, the reduced engine power mode is triggered when the cooling system fails and the engine begins to heat excessively.
In this case, the powertrain control module (PCM) triggers the reduced engine power mode as a preventive measure from any more damage being caused to the vehicle.
What Are The Ways To Fix Reduced Engine Power
Getting the reduced engine power warning off is not as easy as you think. Your vehicle first of all has to be properly diagnosed before any step can be taken to figure out the fix.
As earlier discussed, there are many reasons why your vehicles have entered the reduced power mode which makes it a little more complicated to pin a fix to the problem.
However, if you’re troubleshooting a vehicle, listed below are some general-but-vital steps to be taken;
- Check for the Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs):
The DTCs will point you right in the best direction for further diagnostics.
- Look Up the Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs):
The TSB contains the correct repair procedure document for your vehicle.
- Consult Information On the Factory Repair:
Consulting the factory repair information is a great idea to fix the reduced engine power light warning before going deep mechanical repairs.
In some cases, you might get all the luck with applying simple procedures like; cleaning the body of the throttle. Oftentimes, you’ll need not just cleaning to get your vehicle out of the reduced power mode.
A proper diagnostic needs to be carried out by professionals with the equipment and skills to efficiently get your vehicle out of reduced power mode.
Instead, if spending unnecessary time and money trying to find a way to fix the issue on your own, it is recommended to have a pro check it out for you to get your vehicle back on the road in no time.