Check Engine Light On 2004 Stang Gt With Low Milage!!

Debrajean70

Member
Aug 19, 2016
11
2
13
Long Island, NY, USA
I am new to this site. Yet in my minimal searching around, love it. my dream stang is, Of course, The Shelby. Thus why I named my pitbull after the Shelby!!

My baby is riding rough and tonight the check engine light came on,8 /19/16. I KNOW something is very wrong....she has been riding rough for about 3 weeks, I ignored like a jerk cause my hubby in hospital on a respirator. Now to fix her. I am afraid to drive her at all, cause I read on Ford dot com, that this could be serious. Where do I start??? Do those code scanner things work on a 2004? It is night so I filled the with gas and drove straight home into her garage. Tomorrow, I will check the oil and the battery. I have been having issues with the battery..sometimes needing to jump her. Dec, 2015, was her last oil change. At that time. They said I need to bleed out all fluids and replace. To the tune of $400 bucks....I wanted to do myself. They also said the tranny fluid was black, it should be red. Due to my hubby circumstance, i need to fix her, fast and for not too much $$. Please advise as to what to do first. Ummm, does anyone know of those, roadside massistance people!e have those scanners?? I really do not want to drive her....don't want to blow her engine or tranny.... Please help!!
 
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Davedacarpainter

I think I've messed my pants
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Nov 28, 2015
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Hi Debra (correct on the name?), welcome to Stangnet.

It's good to see you like to work on your mustang yourself.

You can go to most auto parts stores and they'll have an OBD II scanner to plug into your car to see what's throwing the code. Easy peasy. When you have a little extra cash, it wouldn't hurt for you to get one from SCT, or any of the other companies out there. Those will help to tune your car as well in accordance with the way you drive.

Transmission fluid will maintain that red dye color for a bit of time, but it will start to change though. What you should do is to pull the dipstick out and sniff it. If the fluid smells burned, that's not good. Color, in of itself won't tell you much.

Most roadside help companies will have a scanner btw.

Check your oil level, coolant level and transmission fluid level. If they are in the good range, you'll probably be fine to get to the Autozone, Oriellys or whomever to get the code read.

Ford.com is like going to one of the medical.com places. While you can get the truth from them, sometimes it might over diagnose you.

A rough running car sometimes can be just a little thing.

I'm sorry to here about your husband and will hope for you that he will be ok.

When you get time, go to the subforum for '96-'04 mustangs. You'll get lots of help there from members with your style vehicle. Include pictures of your mustang when you start a new thread there. We all love pictures.
 

Debrajean70

Member
Aug 19, 2016
11
2
13
Long Island, NY, USA
Hi Debra (correct on the name?), welcome to Stangnet.

It's good to see you like to work on your mustang yourself.

You can go to most auto parts stores and they'll have an OBD II scanner to plug into your car to see what's throwing the code. Easy peasy. When you have a little extra cash, it wouldn't hurt for you to get one from SCT, or any of the other companies out there. Those will help to tune your car as well in accordance with the way you drive.

Transmission fluid will maintain that red dye color for a bit of time, but it will start to change though. What you should do is to pull the dipstick out and sniff it. If the fluid smells burned, that's not good. Color, in of itself won't tell you much.

Most roadside help companies will have a scanner btw.

Check your oil level, coolant level and transmission fluid level. If they are in the good range, you'll probably be fine to get to the Autozone, Oriellys or whomever to get the code read.

Ford.com is like going to one of the medical.com places. While you can get the truth from them, sometimes it might over diagnose you.

A rough running car sometimes can be just a little thing.

I'm sorry to here about your husband and will hope for you that he will be ok.

When you get time, go to the subforum for '96-'04 mustangs. You'll get lots of help there from members with your style vehicle. Include pictures of your mustang when you start a new thread there. We all love pictures.
Thank you so much!! Yes I def want to buy one of those code scanners...but right now is not the right time due to hubby condition. I did do some research and found 5 reasons why the service engine light could be on. So far the oil is good, the gas cap good, ummm not to sound dumb but I cannot find the tranny stick....will investigate. I did have to jump her this morning to get her out of the garage.... So maybe it isnthe battery??? I did have to buy a new battery about a year and a half ago...but the cables or the battery terminals ALWAYS have corrosion. Always have it cleaned...I do not see any right now. But I did have to jump her. Hubby in surgery so I have no choice but to drive her about 3 miles to hospital THEN about 5 miles to AutoZone for code reading? Pray for my girl. I will freak if something happens go her! Will post pics of her later and tell you all the sentimental story about her. Any advise. Now???
 
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Davedacarpainter

I think I've messed my pants
SN Certified Technician
Nov 28, 2015
11,694
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Discordia
Thank you so much!! Yes I def want to buy one of those code scanners...but right now is not the right time due to hubby condition. I did do some research and found 5 reasons why the service engine light could be on. So far the oil is good, the gas cap good, ummm not to sound dumb but I cannot find the tranny stick....will investigate. I did have to jump her this morning to get her out of the garage.... So maybe it isnthe battery??? I did have to buy a new battery about a year and a half ago...but the cables or the battery terminals ALWAYS have corrosion. Always have it cleaned...I do not see any right now. But I did have to jump her. Hubby in surgery so I have no choice but to drive her about 3 miles to hospital THEN about 5 miles to AutoZone for code reading? Pray for my girl. I will freak if something happens go her! Will post pics of her later and tell you all the sentimental story about her. Any advise. Now???
I've bought batteries before that went bad, but luckily was soon enough they had a warranty covering them.

The battery charge might also depend on the useage of your car. My wife worked less than a mile from our house for awhile. The alternator didn't have enough time to recharge the battery from starting it.

Get the codes read from your car before you do anything else. You will be going off of luck otherwise on fixing it. You might get lucky the first time and fix it, or it could be a couple hundred dollars down the road before you come up with the real culprit.

I would suggest buying a Chilton's manual for your year of mustang as well. It won't have everything, but it does have a lot of good info.
 

Debrajean70

Member
Aug 19, 2016
11
2
13
Long Island, NY, USA
Hey sorry it took me so long to reply, hubby was moved to a lung rehab...anyway it wound up being the cam something sensor...bought the part for $12 bucks at AutoZone...coat me $80 for garage to put in, took 3 mins... Now I am told I am low on tranny fluid, she still running rough..so I am off to get her tranny fluid and an funnel so I can put it in.... I promise to post Monica soon. Thanks again xo
 

Debrajean70

Member
Aug 19, 2016
11
2
13
Long Island, NY, USA
Hey sorry it took me so long to reply, hubby was moved to a lung rehab...anyway it wound up being the cam something sensor...bought the part for $12 bucks at AutoZone...coat me $80 for garage to put in, took 3 mins... Now I am told I am low on tranny fluid, she still running rough..so I am off to get her tranny fluid and an funnel so I can put it in.... I promise to post Monica soon. Thanks again xo
It was the CAM POSITION SENSOR*.