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May 21, 2014

Common Engine Problems and How They’re Fixed

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It doesn’t matter if you drive a homegrown vehicle or an import, a shiny new ride or your brother’s hand me down lemon, engine problems are part of the deal when it comes to car ownership. Regular tune ups and meticulous car care can help prevent the onset of some problems, while others can just come out of the blue!

Engine Problem

So Engine just won’t start! Sadly, it’s a something most people can say they have experience once or twice. This does not mean your car is a write off! It just means something is preventing the ignition from communicating with the rest of the automobile. Here are some common reasons your engine fails to start and the solutions they require!

The Usual Suspects

  • The Battery: it could be low and simply need a boost (grab a friend and set of jumper cables) or you may need to invest in a new battery which is a relatively low cost solution!
  • Corrosion: When you look under the hood you may notice a build-up of white or pale powdery substance sitting on your battery or its connectors. There is a chance this can be cleaned away and restarted, or again you may need a new battery! Regular maintenance check-ups will help keep under the hood clean and will keep you informed of potential hazards!
  • Loose Wiring: If the battery cables aren’t properly connected, the circuit is not complete and no juice will be traveling to your car! Ask your mechanic to assess for any faulty connections and make sure everything is secure!
  • Starter motor relay failure (starter solenoid): Since most vehicles run on combustion engines and not electric motor (its true!) something needs to relay a message between the engine and the battery. The starter motor gets the pistons moving and allows for the engine to start. So—if there is a problem with the starter, nothing will happen when the key is turned! Again if its simple corrosion preventing the start, try cleaning it first (with the car off!) or replace it if that fails!
  • Ignition switch failure: if the starter turns over, but just won’t start—this could be the problem! It could also be the culprit responsible for your car stalling, lights going off, radio failing, and more! Replacing this part can be done at home by the Do it yourselfers out there, but it’s always better to have a professional take a look (and fix it!)
  • Defective fuel pump: This will make your engine hard to start, along with stalling the engine, and surging the engine. Some cars have easy access to the fuel pump for replacement; others are more difficult so speak with your auto shop before dismantling anything!
  • And last but not least…Clogged fuel filter! This is located between the engine and the fuel tank and it filters any impurities your fuel tries to pass into the engine. Over time, buildup makes for trouble! The fuel will stop making through to the combustion part of the engine and the car will fail to start. Have a certified mechanic like Service Plus help you with this and all your other car care needs!

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