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Toyota Camry Check Engine Light

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

We’ve scanned over 45923 Camrys with the FIXD OBD2 scanner and app. These are the 5 most common reasons for a check engine light in your Toyota Camry.

5 Most Common Reasons for a Toyota Camry Check Engine Light

Code Severity  Simplified Description
P0420 Moderate Your catalytic converter isn’t functioning efficiently. This could increase the output of harmful pollutants.
P1604 Severe The engine doesn’t start after cranking for an extended period of time. Low fuel is one possible cause.
P0441 Low  The purge valve in your EVAP System is incorrect, allowing either too much or too little flow of stored fuel vapors. 
P0446 Low The EVAP system’s vent control valve is not opening or closing properly.
C1201 Medium There is an issue in the engine control system. This may also cause issues with VSC and Traction Control.

Other Common Toyota Warning Lights

  • TRAC OFF Light
  • VSC Light

What Does It Mean When TRAC OFF Light Comes On?

TRAC OFF means that your Camry’s traction control system, which helps prevent you from spinning your wheels when you press the gas in slippery conditions, is disabled. It is possible to turn this system off manually, which will also illuminate this light  to remind you that you’ve done it. If you did not disable traction control manually and this light is on, it is an issue that you should have a shop check out for you.

When traction control is off, the VSC light may turn on as well. “VSC” stands for Vehicle Stability Control. The VSC system helps your Toyota avoid skids and stay safely on the road while going around sharp corners. The systems are connected, so a problem in one could cause a problem in both.

Check Your Gas Cap

One of the most common reasons for a check engine light in your Toyota Camry, and the easiest problem to fix, is a loose gas cap. If your gas cap isn’t tightened until it clicks, the engine may detect a leak in the evaporative emissions system and trigger an error. It’s easy, it’s free, and it may even solve the P0441 and P0446 issues on this list.

What Should I Do If the Check Engine Light Is On in My Toyota Camry?

There are any number of reasons why the engine light might turn on, from a loose gas cap to a misfiring engine. If your check engine light is on, don’t panic. Instead, follow the steps below and get it to a trusted repair shop for inspection as soon as possible.

> Find a RepairPal Certified Shop Near You

What the Check Engine Light Means

Your Toyota Camry check engine light is part of the onboard diagnostics system (OBD2). All gas-powered vehicles made since 1996 are required to have this computer system that monitors your engine performance and notifies the driver or automotive technician of any issues.

When your check engine light comes on, it means that the computer has detected a problem. Along with a warning light on your dashboard, the OBD2 system stores the diagnostic trouble code associated with that problem. With the right tools, you can read this code to understand what’s wrong with your car and how serious the problem is.

Instantly Diagnose Your Check Engine Light

Read and clear 7000+ check engine light codes with the FIXD Sensor and free app.

How to Read Your Camry’s Check Engine Light

You have a few options to read the diagnostic trouble code stored in your car’s computer.

1) Go to your local mechanic. For a diagnostic fee, they will use a professional OBD2 scan tool to read the code and identify the cause. However, if you aren’t near a repair shop or haven’t yet established a relationship with a shop in your area that you trust, this might not be the best option.

2) Go to a nearby auto parts store. Most stores will read your engine codes for free. Again, if you break down in the middle of nowhere, this won’t help. It’s also possible that these shops may try to sell you products you may or may not actually need after they interpret your check engine light for you.

3) Get the FIXD car scanner to read your own codes. There are many affordable engine light scanners available for everyday drivers that plug into your car’s OBD2 port to tell you what your check engine light means. FIXD is a great OBD2 scanner for Toyota because it can translate any Toyota check engine light into plain English directly on your smartphone. 

How the FIXD Check Engine Scanner Works

The FIXD car scanner plugs into your car’s OBD2 port. This port is usually located in Toyotas under the dash on the driver’s side of your vehicle. Read more about how to find your OBD2 port on your particular car.

Once it’s connected to your car, the FIXD Sensor and free mobile app interprets your check engine light in plain English so that you can walk into the repair shop with accurate, detailed information so you can make informed decisions about your repairs.

Understand Your CEL

FIXD instantly translates over 7000 error codes into simple terms right on your phone.

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See How Serious Your CEL Is

Find out how serious your code is and whether or not it’s safe to keep driving.

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Get Maintenance Alerts

FIXD notifies you when it’s time for an oil change and other routine maintenance based on your make, model, and mileage.

FIXD Maintenance Log

Monitor the Health of Your Toyota

FIXD monitors your Camry’s health by sending you real-time notifications about any check engine lights. You can also view live data for your Toyota while you’re driving, including oxygen sensor voltage, fuel trims, vehicle speed, and more.

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Does FIXD Work with Your Camry?

FIXD is compatible with all gas-powered Toyota models made in 1996 or newer, as well as all diesel engines 2008 or newer. Use the Compatibility Checker for additional info.

Is It Safe to Drive with My Check Engine Light On?

Since the check engine light is tied to your Camry’s individual on-board diagnostics system, you’ll need a code reader or OBD2 scan tool like the FIXD Sensor to understand the severity of the issue and whether or not you should keep driving.

If the check engine light is yellow, this is likely a less serious issue. You can probably keep driving, but the problem still requires further investigation. If the check engine light is flashing, you should pull over as soon as you safely can to check for low oil or overheating. A red check engine light means that you should stop driving immediately. 

If you experience driveability issues along with the engine light, such as rough running or misfires, reduce your speed and take it easy on the engine to avoid potentially bigger problems.

How Can I Reset the Check Engine Light in My Camry?

You may want to clear the check engine light if you think you’ve resolved the issue (i.e. tightening a loose gas cap). Resetting the light and driving around to see if it comes back on will let you know whether or not you have fixed the problem.

If you plan on doing your own car repairs, the easiest, cheapest way to reset the check engine light on your Toyota is with FIXD. Most shops will charge more than $100 to reset this for you, but you can do it for free inside the FIXD app.

In the FIXD app, you can reset the light anytime you want for free. After performing the engine scan, go to the Details page and click the “Clear Engine Light” button. The light will turn off, and any codes stored inside your Camry’s computer will be cleared. If the light turns back on after a few miles of driving, the issue likely still exists.

FIXD Clear Check Engine Light

Diagnose Your Toyota Camry’s Check Engine Light with FIXD

Still wondering what to do about that pesky check engine light on your Camry? Take the first step to clarity by getting FIXD, America’s favorite check engine scanner and app. Get detailed engine diagnostics, plain English code descriptions, issue severity warnings, and so much more. Learn more about the FIXD Sensor and mobile app today!

Justin-Hughes

Recovering autocross and track day enthusiast. Once turned a VW Jetta into a pickup truck. Lives in a van down by the river. Dream car: 2001 Subaru WRC rally car.

We’re here to help you simplify car care and save, so this post may contain affiliate links to help you do just that. If you click on a link and take action, we may earn a commission. However, the analysis and opinions expressed are our own.

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About the Author

Justin Hughes

Justin Hughes

Recovering autocross and track day enthusiast. Once turned a VW Jetta into a pickup truck. Lives in a van down by the river. Dream car: 2001 Subaru WRC rally car.

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