May 2, 2022—CarMD, a diagnostic data and business solutions corporation, has released its 2022 CarMD Vehicle Health Index. This report provides an annual look at check engine light-related repairs and costs.
According to a press release, this year's report could serve as especially useful because new car inventory has been noticeably low, and proper reaction to repairs can potentially expand a vehicle's life.
"We encourage car owners and the automotive aftermarket to reference the CarMD Vehicle Health Index to monitor check engine light repair trends, which can help inform repair diagnostics, parts purchasing and lead to extended vehicle life," said , CarMD technical director in the press release.
Some of the outstanding findings in their report include car repair costs going up in price due to aging vehicles overall. The report found that car repair costs went up by 3.6 percent. Repairs totaled around $393 on average and the average vehicle age sits at around 12.1 years.
The report also found vehicle age to be an impacting factor on the prevalence of check engine light problems. Vehicles made in 2007 were the most likely to need check engine light-related repair over the past year. 2021 vehicles were less likely to need attention in that area.
Catalytic converter repair is also addressed. The report states that 2005-2008 models were among the most likely to need catalytic converter repair. The report also acknowledges the high price point of catalytic converter repair due to the fact that they are made up of precious metals. However, converters do not usually fail unless another repair (the example of an oxygen sensor is given) is ignored.
CarMD also notes that check engine lights can be set off by more affordable fixes, such as damaged or missing gas caps. 2015, 2016, 2018, and 2019 vehicles had the highest likelihood of having a gas-cap issue.