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Ask Smithy Xtra 'Check engine' light in Excel

The 'Check Engine' light on our 2000 Hyundai Excel Sprint sometimes comes on, but then goes off when I stop and open the bonnet. It will be our 17-year-old daughter's car soon, so is there something we can do to fix this problem?

You need to get it checked by a mechanic with diagnostic equipment, particularly as it will become your daughter’s car and you don’t want it breaking down. It’s possibly the engine management computer that’s playing up, but you won’t know until you have it checked.