To put in simpliar words, the engine is controlled by a computor (Powertrain control module, PCM). When something goes goofy, a code is thrown and the CEL lite will blink or be on steady, not sure of the difference, WDE or Torkum where are you? Anyways, Autozone will test the computor through the OBD II diagnostic port. Been told its free, don't know. Get the codes and these guys will help you with the repairs. Me, I need a beer.