Why is the maintenance required light flashing when I start my car?

Every time I turn on my car, the maintenance light flashes on and off for about five seconds, and I can’t find my owner's manual to check what the light is telling me. Why is the maintenance required light flashing when I start my car?

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Answer provided by
Kara Vanderbeek
Answered on Apr 13, 2022
Having a warning light flashing on your dashboard can cause some uneasiness if you’re not sure what the light means. Thankfully, it isn’t usually something you need to panic about.
In general, a flashing maintenance light is your vehicle’s way of alerting you that you’ll need to take your car in for service soon. The light is designed to illuminate at preset intervals to remind drivers that it may be time for an oil change or a tuneup.
When the light first begins flashing, you have about 500 miles before you need to have your car serviced. When the time for service has come, your maintenance light will alert you by coming on and staying on.
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