What Is The Engine Light With Arrow Pointing Down Mean?

The engine light with arrow pointing down is the reduced engine power warning light. This light often confuses drivers because it comes on at different times and for many various reasons. This article will help you understand what is the meaning of this light and when to take action.

What Is The Engine Light With Arrow Pointing Down Mean?

The reduced engine power warning light shows that something has reduced the flow of fuel and air to the engine. It often turns on when a car needs maintenance or repair.

Sometimes reduced engine power can also turn on when there is debris blocking one of the air intake valves. In that case, the reduced engine power light will come on and stay on until you fix it.

What Are The Reasons Behind The Reduced Engine Power Light To Turn On?

The reduced engine power warning light comes on for different reasons, including low fuel level, high coolant temperature, and reduced oil pressure. Here are a few more reasons why your reduced engine power light can go on.

1. Circuit Issues:-

When you have damaged wires and bad connections, this prevents the TAC (Throttle Actuator Control) system from operating normally. This issue can result in several problems with a vehicle, including entering the reduced engine power mode.

2. Bad Pedal Position Sensor:-

A problem anywhere in the TAC system can easily trigger the Reduced Engine Power warning on the dash. For instance, the problem could be one or both of the APP sensors, which are usually integrated into the accelerator pedal.

3. Data Network Or PCM Issues:-

Some older vehicles have modules that serve as mini-computers. These modules communicate with each other through a data network. When this network gets interrupted, or the PC has issues, the reduced engine power warning light will go on.

4. Engine Performance Problems:-

If your reduced power warning light goes on, there’s a big chance something is mechanically wrong with your engine. For example, a faulty high-pressure fuel pump can cause your engine power to reduce. In such cases, the warning light will go on.

5. Cooling System Issues:-

Some GM vehicles will enter reduced engine power mode when the engine begins to overheat due to cooling system issues. The PCM triggers the mode to protect the engine from further damage.

6. Loose Connection:-

Every major component in your vehicle is connected with wires. If there is a short in the electrical system or one of the wires is damaged, the engine could go into a fail-safe mode. This problem can also exist if you have a loose clamp or a ground wire isn’t properly secured.

7. Defective Oxygen Sensor:-

A defective sensor can send faulty information back to the computer, causing adjustments to be made that shouldn’t. This creates an imbalance in the air-fuel mixture, which not only leads to poor performance and engine issues but can also trigger the reduced engine power warning.

8. Malfunctioning ECU:-

The Engine Control Unit is the brain of the entire operation. However, when the ECU starts to fail, any number of issues can occur. You might start to notice poor performance while the engine compensates for problems that may not even be happening.

9. Clogged Catalytic Converter:-

If the engine hasn’t been running properly or as the vehicle ages, the catalytic converter can become clogged. Once this happens, the vehicle will not only fail an emissions test, but you will experience some engine performance issues. It won’t always illuminate the Reduced Engine Power Warning, but you can expect the Check Engine Light to come on at a bare minimum.

Therefore, these are some basic problems that show the engine light with arrow pointing down warning light on the dashboard.

Is It Safe To Drive With The Reduced Engine Power Light On?

Technically, you can (usually) drive slowly when Engine Power Reduced is illuminated on the dash. However, doing so is not recommended. It is best to tow your vehicle to the nearest repair facility, as driving at extremely low speeds can be dangerous.

Also, there are instances where a vehicle will shut off completely after entering Reduced Engine Power mode. Then, you’ll have no choice but to tow it in for repair.

How Do You Reset The Reduced Engine Power Light?

Nothing is more disheartening than seeing the reduced engine power warning alert on the dashboard or feeling the car’s performance fall off the map. The reduced engine power warning cannot be reset with a simple push of a button or flip of a switch. To get the warning to go off and stay off, you will need to fix whatever underlying problem triggered it in the first place.

When the warning pops up, the first step toward fixing the problem is to retrieve diagnostic trouble codes from the car’s computer. These codes can serve as a starting point for further troubleshooting that will hopefully lead to the vehicle’s repair.

Once the car is fixed and the codes are cleared, the reduced power warning will go away.

Reduced Engine Power Warning Repair Cost?

You would have a general estimate of what it will cost to fix the problem based on the report that would be made after completing all of the above checks. The cost to repair a Reduced Engine Power Warning ranges widely from $0 to $2,500. The only way to know the exact cost would be to determine what’s causing it.

Using an engine code scanner should help you narrow down where the fault is. The OBDII scanner will read any fault codes, showing you what systems might be to blame.

How To Fix Reduced Engine Power Mode?

Getting rid of the “Reduced Engine Power” warning light on your vehicle isn’t a straightforward affair you’ll have to perform a proper diagnosis before you can figure out the appropriate fix. If you’re troubleshooting a car that’s in this mode, here are some steps you can take:

Step 1:- Check The Cables

One of the most popular triggers of limp-in mode is loose cables, harnesses, or clamps. Check for loose wires or a weak ground connection after disconnecting the battery. Reconnect them or repair the cables if any of them are broken.

Step 2:- Check The Sensors

Please clean the oxygen sensor properly if it is malfunctioning. If the sensor is somehow not working properly, replace it and then replace it with a new sensor.

Step 3:- Check The Throttle

If a difficult condition happens in the throttle, the throttle location sensor or even the throttle human body will override the entire sensing device or even body. These are inexpensive, so you should be able to replace them.

Step 4:- Airflow Sensor

Another cause for the vehicle to go into line mode is a faulty air mass sensor. Typically, the sensor is located near the air filter or between the intake manifold and the air filter. Check the operation of the sensor after cleaning it with a dry cloth. If the problem persists, replace the sensor.

Step 5:- Electric Control Unit

If the problem is with the electronic control unit (ECU), you must obtain technical assistance for automatic repair. To solve the problem, you must purchase a new unit or upgrade the existing one.

Step 6:- Catalytic Converter

Another reason for the reduced engine power is the clogging of the catalytic converter, which is usually located under the car. Replacing the machinery comes at a high cost, with a new unit costing almost two thousand dollars. Take the unit for repair to an auto repair service provider in your region.

Step 7:- Check Battery

Check the battery for corrosion and lose connections to solve the battery problem. To solve this problem, remove the corrosion and reconnect the cable. Replace the entire battery if it is depleted.

Step 8:- Transmission Fluid

Reduced engine power mode can also be caused by a slipping clutch or low transmission oil level. Check the transmission oil and, if possible, replace it.

Hence, these are some resolving steps through which you can easily turn off the engine light with arrow pointing down warning light on the dashboard. If your car’s problem is not solved by all of the above, our staff strongly advises you to seek emergency assistance from a local car service.


We hope the above-mentioned information about the engine light with arrow pointing down warning light on the dashboard will be helpful to all the readers. If anybody’s doubts persist feel free to comment in the comment section below. We’ll try to solve your doubts as soon as possible.

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