Free Car Diagnostic

Showing posts with label Engine Diagnostic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Engine Diagnostic. Show all posts
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Black Smoke from Exhaust of Car

Black smoke from the exhaust of the car comes out while driving. The possible reasons for black smoke from the exhaust is a clogged air filter, bad fuel injector sensor (throttle position sensor, coolant temperature sensor, and mass airflow sensor).


Clogged air filter
Black smoke that comes out the exhaust is an indication of too much gas burned inside the engine combustion chamber. The most common reason why there is black smoke from the exhaust is the clogged air filter. When the air filter is clogged, enough amount of air will be restricted from going inside the engine making the air/fuel to become reach (too much fuel with not enough air).

Black Smoke from Exhaust of Car

White Smoke From Exhaust
If there is white smoke comes out from exhaust while the engine was running at any engine temperature like when its cold, warm or hot then it means that there is a problem with the engine.
Learn more: White Smoke From Exhaust

Open the hood of the car and locate the air filter, refer to the manual covering the vehicle model if you have difficulties finding the air filter. Remove the air filter and examine closely if there is too much dirt present on the filter, if there is too much dirt then this is what restricting replacement parts from going inside the combustion chamber that is why the air is insufficient and the fuel is too much.

Replace the air filter. This should fix the problem. Any auto parts have an air filter for their inventory so nothing to worry about where to find replacement parts.

Bad Fuel Injector Sensor
This problem is only possible for cars with fuel injection systems. Usually, the problem for this system is the electronic sensors that measure various engine factors in which the car computer system is used for calculating the amount of fuel that must be injected on each engine cylinder. If one the sensors are faulty then the wrong data will be sent to the car computer and the air/fuel mixture will be wrong which in this case the fuel is too rich.

There are three sensors that when faulty can cause black smoke, the sensors are throttle position sensor, engine coolant temperature sensor, and the mass airflow sensor.



There is only one way to determine if the sensor is faulty, this is to hook up the car to an engine analyzer. The engine analyzer will display trouble codes that can be used to determine if the sensor is the problem. With that said, bring the car to a reputable car shop to have the engine analyze with an engine analyzer. This kind of job is costly. If one of the sensors is bad, just replace the sensor to fix the problem of black smoke.

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Engine Pinging Sound When Driving on Flat Roads and Uphill

Engine Pinging Sound When Driving

While driving on flat roads there is a pinging sound coming from the engine, also pinging sound occurs while driving uphill. Usually, the reason for pinging sound is the use of low-grade gas, other reasons are faulty turbocharger knock sensor, the EGR valve is faulty or spark plug end cover is covered with carbon.

Engine Pinging Sound when Driving Possible Causes

The use of low-grade gas is causing pinging sound
Pinging sound usually causes an engine-related fault, however, there are several causes of pinging sound one of the cause is the use of low-grade gas. Low-grade gas is usually with 88 octanes or below. A gas with low octane burns too easily because it is too combustible and will self-ignite before it reaches the combustion chamber, this phenomenon is called “pre-ignition”. When pre-ignition occurs on the engine, you will hear a pining sound.

When filling your car with gasoline always use a higher octane rating gasoline, usually 92 octanes and above, octane rating is displayed on the front of the gas pump on every gas station.

Can You Put 91 Octane Gasoline In Any Car?
Not all cars can use 91 octane gasoline. Most of the cars produced for the market today use high octane gasoline. If you are not sure about what gasoline octane rating to use for your car, check out your car user manual it indicates what type of fuel to be used for your car.

Read more: Can You Put 91 Octane Gasoline In Any Car?

Faulty turbocharger knocks sensor if the car is equipped with a turbocharger.
Engine with turbocharger has a gadget that is called the knock sensor.

The purpose of this sensor is to determine if there is an occurrence of pinging sound and feedback to the engine computerized control unit which is responsible for adjusting some parameters to eliminate the pinging sound or knocking sound. Now, if the knock sensor is faulty then the engine will likely have pinging sound, it is also possible that the computerized control unit is at fault but this is very rare to happen and if this happens the engine will not run.

Engine Pinging Sound When Driving

Bring the car to a reputable car shop and ask the mechanic to check the knock sensor, if the mechanic found that the knock sensor is faulty have it replaced.

The Exhaust Gas Re-circulation (EGR) Valve is Faulty


When your car is equipped with Exhaust Gas Re-circulation (EGR)

The main purpose of the EGR is to reduce the exhaust output coming from the engine so that air pollution that is coming out the exhaust will also reduce. It works by routing the exhaust gas back into the engine combustion chamber for second burning. The EGR have a component called the EGR valve, the purpose of this valve is to regulate the amount of exhaust gas going inside the combustion chambers, when the EGR valve is stuck on closed position or even partially closed then the exhaust gas that will enter inside the engine combustion chamber will not be enough this will cause the gas to ignite too soon or what is known as pre-ignition which creates pinging sound coming from the engine.

Bring the car to a reputable car shop and ask the mechanic to check on the EGR valve and have it tested. If the EGR valve is the problem then have it replaced.

EGR

Thin Air is causing the pinging sound
When the pinging sound occurs on high altitude only Thin air is causing the pinging sound, when the air is thin it causes the fuel combustion chamber to ignite early before the piston reaches the top of the combustion chamber, these phenomena is called pre-ignition and this is causing the pinging sound coming from the engine.


When you know that you are about to drive uphill on high altitude roads, fill your tank with high octane fuel so that the fuel will not burn too early but instead it will burn slowly and will eliminate pre-ignition. When pre-ignition is eliminated pinging sound is also eliminated.

Spark plug end is covered with carbon (black sooty substance)

Check then spark plug if there is a black sooty substance on its end if the substance is present then it means that there is a carbon deposit from engine combustion chambers. When the operating temperature of the engine reaches some of the carbon deposit will cause the air/fuel mixture to ignite before its pistons reach the top of the combustion chamber. This is called pre-ignition and pre-ignition causes pinging sound from the engine.

Spark Plug

Drive the car for two to three hours on the highway to burn some of the carbon deposit this will minimize the pinging sound. If you want to eliminate the pinging sound then the carbon deposit inside the combustion chamber must be removed, this procedure is called “chemical decarbonization”. This kind of procedure is expensive and should be done by a shop that specialized in this kind of procedure.

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White Smoke from Exhaust - Diesel Engine

White Smoke from Exhaust Diesel Engine

If you notice the white smoke from the exhaust of the diesel engine only when the engine is very cold, then it is normal. This is because the condensation is steaming off.

When a cold engine is started, any condensation that has formed, say during the night or while the engine sat, will steam off and come out the exhaust. This is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about.

What to do?

Do nothing. No Remedy Necessary.
If you notice the white smoke even if the engine has warmed up, then it is a problem and usually, it is a blown head gasket that causing it.


As indicated that the white smoke coming from the exhaust appears at all times. This is a clear indication of a blown head gasket. The head gasket is a thing which goes between the cylinder head and the engine block.


Basically, it does what any gasket is supposed to do - seal something or keep something from leaking. A head gasket keeps the water from entering the cylinders. When it is "blown" or has a break in it, what then happens is some of the water (that is used to cool the engine) leaks into a cylinder and burns off as steam. This steam then comes out of the exhaust.

Blue Smoke from Diesel Engine
First off, blue smoke from the exhaust always means that the engine is burning oil. Of course then, what we need to do is to find out what's causing this engine to burn oil.
Learn more: Blue Smoke from Diesel Engine

What to do?

You'll need a new head gasket. If you would like to do this procedure yourself, refer to the appropriate auto manual for detailed instructions. Beware that this is a fairly involved job. Otherwise, find a reputable shop to do the work. Explain to the mechanic exactly what this article explained to you.

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Car Idling Rough

Car Idling Rough

Cylinder Misfire


When the engine runs rough at idle it means that rough idle causes the engine misfiring in one or more cylinders.

The reason why car idling rough
(1) Engine misfiring in one or more cylinders

An engine that runs rough while idling indicates that one or more of its cylinders is misfiring. This is simply because misfiring cylinders disrupt an engine's natural balance. Now, you are probably wondering what specifically causes a cylinder to misfire? Well, there are many, many possibilities but unfortunately, none are very easy to test for. This is why the above (very general) diagnosis was suggested.

Incidentally, two common causes of cylinder misfire are

1) a vacuum leak, and
2) bad spark plugs or spark plug wires.

Additionally, if the vehicle is equipped with fuel injection, it is possible that one or more fuel injectors could be clogged. This will create a "fuel-starved" condition in the corresponding cylinders and thus misfiring.


What to do?
You might try replacing the spark plugs and spark plug wires. This is a procedure you can do yourself and it may solve this rough idle problem. However, if it doesn't or you don't feel too comfortable doing this, you will need to take this vehicle to a garage for complete analysis and repair. Such garages tend to be reputable and, best of all, if you have a dispute after any work is done.

How to Replace Spark Plug


Related Topic:

Car Shaking While Idle

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Engine Pinging Noise While Driving

Engine Pinging Noise While Driving

When the car makes pinging noise while driving, the noise usually indicates a problem related to the engine. However, there are other causes like the use of cheap low octane gasoline or may also cause by driving the car in high altitude areas.

Reasons why engine makes pinging noise while driving

(1) Use of low octane gasoline
(2) Driving at high altitude area
(3) Engine related problem

Use of low octane gasoline
Low grade or "cheap" gas is generally considered to be gas with an octane rating of 88 or below. The bad thing about low-grade gas is that it burns too easily. Put another way, low-grade gas is too combustible. You see, the gas that burns too easily will, under certain conditions, self-ignite before the piston reaches the top of the combustion chamber... this is known as pre-ignition. When pre-ignition occurs, you'll hear a pinging sound.

Engine Pinging Noise While Driving

Generally, pre-ignition only occurs under conditions such as when the engine is under stress and/or really hot. When driving up a hill, the engine is under stress. This stress will trigger pre-ignition (and thus pinging).

What to do?
Use higher octane gasoline. High octane fuels have a rating of 92 or above and are usually called "Super" gasoline. Incidentally, the octane rating is displayed on the front of the gas pump.



Driving at high altitude area
If the only time the engine makes a pinging sound is on high altitude roads. What is significant about high altitude roads is the fact that the air is thin. Now, when an engine is both under stress (e.g. driving up a hill) and it has only thin air for combustion, the fuel will tend to ignite in the combustion chambers before it is should. This condition is known as "pre-ignition". When pre-ignition occurs, a pinging sound results.

Engine Pinging Noise While Driving

What to do?
Try using high octane gasoline the next time you anticipate driving on high altitude roads. High octane fuels burn slower and are therefore more resistant to pre-ignition. If pre-ignition is eliminated, pinging is eliminated as well. High octane fuels have a rating of 92 or above and are called "Super" gasoline. By the way, the octane rating is easy to determine... it's displayed on the front of any gas pump.

Engine related problem
If the car has fuel injection. Fuel-injected engines have a gadget called a "load sensor". The purpose of this sensor is to measure the load/stress on the engine. When the load is high, such as when driving up a hill, the load sensor (if working) will send a signal to the engine's control unit to indicate a "high load" condition. Based on this signal, the control unit makes a calculation and uses the result to adjust the engine's operation so as to avoid pinging. Clearly then, if the load sensor isn't working, the engine will probably ping when driving up a hill. From the above, you may be thinking that the control unit could be faulty and not the load sensor.  Although this is possible, it's rare.  Further, if the control unit was faulty, the engine would probably not run at all.

What to do?
Take the car to a car repair shop and have the mechanic check the load sensor.  If it is indeed faulty, have it replaced. When talking to the mechanic, try to describe the nature of this problem just as described in this article. Don't ignore this pinging sound.  Pinging is actually an indication of something called pre-ignition.  When left uncorrected, pinging/pre-ignition can ruin an engine. If you aren't currently using "Super" gas, try a tank. Super gas is formulated to resist pinging and thus can act as a temporary fix to this problem.

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Car Shaking While Idle

When a car is shaking while idle, it means that the engine is misfiring in one or more cylinders.

Car Shakes While Idle

Engine Cylinder


Reasons why the car is shaking while idle

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Temperature Gauge Reads Hot During Traffic

Temperature Gauge Reads Hot During Traffic

When temperature gauge reads hot during traffic it means that there is something wrong with the fan. This particular problem suggests that there is something wrong with the fan. You see the main purpose of the fan is to keep the engine cool when the vehicle either moving slowly or stop such as in prolonged slow traffic.

The reason why temperature gauge reads hot during the traffic

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Temperature Reads Hot After Engine Start


Temperature Reads Hot After Engine Start

If the temperature reads hot after the engine is started the possible reason is a lack of coolant, collapse radiator hose, bad water pump, or a bad thermostat.

Possible reasons why temperature reads hot after engine start


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Engine Lacks Power on Flat Roads and Uphill Driving

Engine Lacks Power on  Flat Roads and Uphill Driving

The overall loss of power usually points to a fault in either the ignition system or fuel system, especially on a low mileage car.

The reason why the engine lacks power on flat roads and uphill driving

(1) The problem with spark plugs or spark plug wires
(2) Clogged fuel injector


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Car Start But Blue Smoke Comes Out from Exhaust

If the car start but blue smoke comes out from Exhaust, it means that the engine is burning oil. The problem is why the engine is burning oil, that is what we are going to find out. When an engine burns oil, the most common reason is a bad ring. If the engine has a bad ring aside from burning oil it will also show signs of loss in power, especially when driving uphill.

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High Pitch Squeal from Engine While Running

While the engine is running, the engine produced high pitch squeal. This possible reason is because of a worn drive belt, faulty alternator, or bad steering pump.

 

Possible cause of high pitch Squeal from engine

Worn Drive Belt

The drive belt is the one that drives various engine accessories. When the drive belt worn out or otherwise damaged it will produce a high pitched squeal sound while the engine is running.


Faulty Alternator

Another possible cause of high pitch squeal sound coming from the engine compartment is the faulty alternator. Usually, the bearing inside the alternator is worn out if the bearing is worn out it will produce squealing noise especially when the alternator spins.


Bad Steering Pump

The bad steering pump is also a possible cause of high pitched squealing when the steering pump fails it will produce sound especially when turning at low speed. However, the possibilities of the steering pump as the cause of high pitch squeal are very rare.


The first thing to do is to spray WD-40 lubrication on the alternator bearing if the alternator bearing is not sealed, also spray on the underside of the drive belt. However, this will only be a temporary step to solve the problem of high pitch squealing noise. If the problem still occurs, then no other option but to bring the car to a reputable car shop and ask the mechanic to check the alternator and the steering pump. Repair the affected parts or replace the parts if necessary.

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What Causes Ticking Noise in Engine While Running

Ticking Noise in Engine

What causes ticking noise in the engine? If ticking noise in the engine is heard while running is an indication of a poorly lubricated engine. The reason for this is the oil inside the engine is not enough or just simply the engine lacks engine oil or the oil pressure inside the engine is low.


Ticking Noise in Engine

What causes ticking noise in the engine?



Ticking noise is related to engine oil problem, with that said the focus of troubleshooting for this kind of problem is limited to checking the engine oil do the following.

Car Troubleshooting

1) Lift the hood of the car and locate the dipstick for the engine oil. Check the engine oil level by removing the dipstick. Wipe the end portion that dips with oil using a clean cloth.

2) Put back the dipstick on the original location (dipping it again on the engine), and put it out again and check the reading. If the reading is below the full line then the engine oil is low.

Ticking Noise in Engine

How to Check Engine Oil video credit

When the engine oil is low then the engine is poorly lubricated. This causes the engine ticking sound that you heard coming from the engine.

How to Check Oil in the Car
If the low oil warning lights on the dashboard are on, you should check the engine oil level immediately and add engine oil as needed. Before you drive your car in the morning checking the oil in the car must be done when the engine is cold.
Learn more: How to Check Oil in the Car

If the dipstick reading is within the full line this means that the oil level is enough and brings us to the next possible reason for engine ticking which is a low engine oil pressure inside the engine.

Now to confirm if the oil pressure inside the engine is low, Observe the oil indicator on the dashboard, if the oil indicator light comes on while the ticking sound occurs when there is a problem with lubrication system, why does your car's oil light come on? well, it is a case of low oil pressure. Otherwise, it is a leaking exhaust manifold or a loose valve is causing the ticking sound in the engine.

Ticking Noise in Engine

When the oil pressure is low not enough oil will reach most of the engine components causing ticking noise from the engine. What causes the oil pressure to become low? The oil pressure will become low if the oil pump is faulty or if the oil pan screen is clogged.

Possible cause of ticking noise in the engine
Poor engine lubrication because of low engine oil level, low oil pressure because of faulty oil pump or clogged oil pan screen, loose valve or leaking exhaust manifold.

How to fix ticking noise in the engine
Engine lubrication is poor. Add enough oil in the engine. Consult the vehicle owner’s manual for the type of oil to be added.

Oil pressure is low. Bring the car to the car shop to determine whether bad oil pumps or a clogged oil pan screen is causing the ticking noise in engine and repair if necessary.

Ticking Noise in Engine

Exhaust manifold leak or loose valve. Bring the car to a shop and ask the mechanic to check for any loose valve in the car engine or a leak on the exhaust manifold. Sometimes a valve adjustment or a tightening of loose bolt on the exhaust manifold can solve the problem of engine ticking noise that causes by these car problems.

Ticking Noise in Engine
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Car Jerks When Accelerating

Car jerks when accelerating especially during cold rainy morning when the engine is cold. Several reasons are causing it depending on the condition of the car when it happened. 

Possible reasons why car jerks when accelerating
Moisture in Distribution Cap

Since the acceleration problem happens when the engine is cold especially during wet morning this suggests moisture in the distributor cap. This happens because when you park the car overnight especially on the outside, moisture is formed inside the distributor cap because of the wet weather. The moisture allows the electrical current to arc inside the distributor cap that causes engine misfiring because of uneven power is produced and when the engine misfire the car jerks when accelerating.

How to avoid the car to jerks when accelerating because of moisture in the distributor cap. To avoid having moisture in the distributor cap from happening park your car inside the garage if you expect rain to come.

Vacuum Leak

If the car jerks gradually happened when accelerating and become worse over time. When the car jerking happens gradually and becomes worst overtime then this indicates a possible problem of a vacuum leak. When the car has a problem with a vacuum leak it will not be noticeable initially and it will become noticeable when it gets worst. The fuel system creates a vacuum in which is one of the key factors in determining the amount of fuel the engine will get. When there is a vacuum leak on the system the amount of fuel the engine gets will become wrong and this will result in car jerking.

Bring the car to the car shop and ask the mechanic to check for any vacuum leak on the system. Usually, the most common parts that are always the source of a vacuum leak is the Exhaust Gas Re-circulation (EGR) and the PCV valves which you should suggest to the mechanic to check.


Faulty Throttle Position Sensor 

If the car jerks happened constantly when accelerating at any engine temperature When your car has a fuel injection system usually the reason for this problem is a bad throttle position sensor. The throttle position sensor is a device present in a fuel injection system, the purpose of this device is to measure how far the driver depressed the gas pedal and feed the data to the car computer which calculates how much fuel the system should inject into the engine. Now, when the throttle position sensor is bad wrong data will be sent to the computer and the amount of fuel injected to the engine will also become wrong that is why the car jerks during acceleration.

Throttle Position Sensor

Bring the car to a shop and ask the mechanic to check the throttle position sensor. Explain to the mechanic the symptom of the problems you have noticed for a better understanding of the problem and made the troubleshooting easy.  

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See also: Car Stalling While Accelerating
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Why is there blue smoke coming from my exhaust?

Do you know why is there blue smoke coming from your exhaust? Well, if the car exhaust produces blue smoke then obviously the engine is burning oil. There are reasons why an engine burns oil those are bad rings, bad valve stems seals, or if the car has turbocharger leaking turbocharger seals is what cause the engine to burn oil.

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What Makes a Car Engine Ping?

What makes a car engine ping? Several reasons make the engine ping, however, the reasons will depend on the condition. If the engine produces pinging noise when driving uphill but no noise when driving on normal roads, it means the fuel you use is a low-grade fuel or the air that comes in the combustion chamber is thin.


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Car Runs then Dies

Initially the car runs after starting then after several seconds the car dies. The possible reasons is run on, fast idle speed or leak on fuel injectors.

 

Engine Pinging Noise when Driving Uphill

The engine produces pinging noise when driving uphill but no noise when driving on normal roads. The reason is that low octane gasoline is used, the air is thin or load sensor is faulty.

 

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Engine Ticking Noise While Driving

Engine ticking noise while driving is heard or there is a slight tapping noise from the engine while the engine is running.


Car Sputters When Starting

During starting the car sputters when starting, this happens if the engine is out of gas, the distributor cap has moisture, the timing belt is damaged, the coil is bad or there is a problem on the electronic ignition.

Cause why car engine sputtering when starting

Engine Out of Gas
Check your car if the car is out of gas. Fill the car with fuel then start again.

Moisture in Distributor Cap

When the engine sputtering happens only in wet conditions then the possible cause is moisture in the distributor cap. The moisture in distributor cap is a result of high humidity air, this moisture will interfere on the ignition system to operate properly thus the car will not start.

Wait for the distributor cap to dry, or remove the distributor cap then clean with a dry cloth. To avoid having moisture on the distributor cap, just park the car inside a cover parking when it is about to rain.

Damage Timing Belt
Open the hood and locate the timing belt. If the timing belt is damage then this causes the problem. Timing belt is very crucial in operating the car, if there is a problem with the timing belt the car will not be started or the engine will run rough.

Bring the car to a reputable car shop and ask the mechanic to replace the damage timing belt so that the engine will not sputter during starting. This kind of work is costly so be prepared. It is better to request for a quote on different car shop before bringing your car otherwise the shop will take advantage of the problem.

Electronic Ignition Problem

Ask a friend to sit on the driver side then you have to pull off one of the spark plug wires then lay it close to the ground. Now, tell your friend to turn on the ignition key and crank the engine for a second. Observe if there is a spark that jumps from the spark plug wires into the ground. Put back the wires then test the other wires until all wires are tested. If you observed that all wires have the spark that jump from the end of the wires into the ground then a problem on electronic ignition is causing the engine sputter when starting.

Bring the car to a reputable car shop then ask the mechanic to check the electronic ignition for any problem and repair if necessary.

Bad Coil
If you did not observed any spark that jump from the end of the wire on one of the wires you tested when doing the above procedure then the problem is a bad coil or the coil is not providing enough current to the spark plug wire. Usually, the problem of the bad coil is causing the engine sputters while starting.

Tow the car to a nearest repair shop and ask the mechanic to remove and replace the bad coil to fix the problem.

Engine Poor Response when Clutch Pedal is Release

The engine response poorly when the clutch pedal is release the reason for this problem is that the clutch is out of adjustments or is badly worn out.

 

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