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Your local auto parts store can reset your computer with an obd-ll scanner(as long as check engine light is on)..or you could simply disconnect the battery for about 15 min. This will not mask mechanical issue with your catalytic converter or 02 sensors whichever case may be..It will only clear the code and give your car's computer a chance to re-run its emmision tests..Check engine light will be back if an emmisions part has failed or needs repair..All this to the best of my knowledge with the information provided.....Hope this helps and best of luck with your automotive endeavors.
btw, the autostore(advance auto, autozone, etc...) will normally give you a printout of your cars obd-ll codes(which cause check engine light to illuminate) if you ask. They may even offer up some guidance but keep in mind they"re trying to sell parts.
This is an evaporative emmisions - small leak detected. Sometimes caused by fueling with the engine running (the fuel cap has to seal the fuel tank for the pressure sensor to read correctly), but can be a leak at the evaporative canister, Check valve on top of the fuel tank cracked and a host of other components, fittings or leak points. Best bet is to have a diagnostic done by a shop which should include pressurizing lines, etc.
Did you change the air filter. The fuel filter will have no impact on emmision's but the air filter is a very common problem.If you usually drive it at low rev.'s then before you send it for emmisions test you will need to put it in a low gear and floor it for about a mile the reason is when it is being tested the engine is reved up to around 3500 rpm and any build up of unburned fuel or oil in the exhaust system will put up the emmisions reading.
The check engine light should be on with the engine running. The coolant temperture senser may be open at some temps the fastest way to test this is to change the senser ( it's cheap and a high failure rate part all auto parts stores will haveplenty of this high failure part in stock and they fail many ways. If the car ever overheated it's damaged or truly bad. A very good one will optimize fuel mileage so if it's suspect change it anyway as money well spent a working but wrong senser can cost alot of gas on any fuel injection car or truck, You get what you pay for in temp sensers and the brand name ones are better. All of them are suspect to be bad even when new and ohm test at temperture charts are is repair manuels. Crank sensers and cam sensers also get hot and quit they cost more are harder to change and fail more on the 3.8 motor than the 3.1 or the 3.4. Igiton modules do this too but it sounds like its been doing this awhile and modules and crank sensers don't stay half bad very long. they stop altogrther. Temp sensers can stay bad and work wrong. If you can get a scanner hooks to the car on data stream the senser may show room temp when cold but as it heats up goes up then to -34 thats open the system doesn't know that to do as the air charge temp senser doesn't agree and the system fails to start and will check as flooded. Flooring the gas and hoding it there may start it anyway. The trottle position senser were to show open thats the clear flood mode and the injectors won't fire. Tps voltage should show .5 volt les than 1 volt at idel (it'll start) and 5 volts at full throttle or nearly. if it shows with a scanner of a voltmeter on the center wire 5 volts or 0 it won't start. Coolant senser fails more often and is cheaper