Survey: 3 in 10 drivers ignore ‘check engine’ light for month before taking car in

NEW YORK — “Maybe tomorrow” is a recurring thought among many Americans when it comes to their car’s needs, according to a recently released survey.

The driving habits of 2,000 Americans were examined for a survey commissioned by JiffyLube, and the results show a general unwillingness among drivers to get their cars checked out for potentially serious problems. Among those surveyed whose vehicles’ “check engine” lights have come on, about three in 10 (29%) admitted to ignoring the warning for a month or more before finally taking the car for a check up.

Perhaps, then, it isn’t as shocking that two in five Americans say they expect their car to break down at any minute. Additionally, one in seven U.S. motorists are driving around with a potentially serious issue in their engine. The survey also found that the average American car has at least three issues impacting its performance at any given time.

The three most commonly identified problems among drivers were rattling noises, squeaky brakes, and the dashboard ‘check engine’ light.

A whopping 62% of respondents said they’ve experienced a breakdown at least once in their life. In the past year, the average survey respondent has had two flat tires and has run out of gas twice.

The results also indicate that many Americans are driving from place to place on a hope and a prayer, quite literally; 39% said they feel relief when they get to their destination, and 32% verbally thank their car when they arrive at their destination safely.

So why are Americans so hesitant to just take their car in for a check up? Many feel they can get by all by themselves. More than half (54%) of respondents claimed to be able to self diagnose their car’s issues or potential problems themselves.

This self assuredness in their own abilities may be misguided for many Americans, with 21% of respondents stating they do not know how to change a tire, and 18% admitting they do not know how to jumpstart an engine.

The survey was conducted by OnePoll.

Follow on Google News

About the Author

Ben Renner

Writer, editor, curator, and social media manager based in Denver, Colorado. View my writing at

The contents of this website do not constitute advice and are provided for informational purposes only. See our full disclaimer