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I have a 1996 Volkswagen Jetta GL with the check engine light on. Can anyone tell me a quick and convenient way of clearing the diagnostic codes (and thus turning the light off, if at least momentarily) without taking it to a VW dealer or mechanic and paying a costly one hour labor fee?
All I want to do is turn the light off and see how long it takes for it to return.

Many thanks,
Matt

PS - jettagrl99 - please do not respond with information not relevant to my question. It just causes confusion. Thanks.
 

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Well, where do we start. Good 'ol mk3's are notorious for check engine lights. One thing to try is unhooking your battery to reset the computer. Leave your terminals off for at least 15 minutes. This may not work, depending on the cause of the code. The only other solution is probably for your local mechanic or dealer to put it on the diagnostics computer. Hopefully it's just one of your sensors, which mk3's are also well known for frying. I've had my engine light on for about 4 years now. It's thrown up many codes when put on the computer. The flavor of the month now is my crank sensor. However, last winter, it did warn me of a timing problem. Good luck to you, and if all else fails, slap some electical tape on your gauge cluster.....
 

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i had mine cleared at autozone. they diagnose your car but they arent legally allowed to clear it, so i asked the guy to let me see his thingy and. i hit the clear button. he was like "hey you cant do that". and i said "do what haha"
 

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The check engine light can be show up over the smallest thing. However it still is an issue that needs to be dealt with, seeing that if there is a problem with your engine, it could cost you horspower, fuel economy, or it could even result in a blown motor. The best thing to do is to get it checked with a diognostic tool. There is a chance that it could be something as simple as a fuse or a relay, in which case if it's the fuse or relay to your airpump, it would be a small issue which can be easily fixed. However, if it's a sensor to your cooling system, you could end up with a cracked block if you don't fix it a.s.a.p. Don't ignore it unless you know it's nothing important. Or you can do like homeboy say's and put some electrical tape on your gauge face.
 

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you only have a serious issue if your CEL is flashing
 
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