It can be very alarming to be driving down the road and suddenly feel your vehicle shudder, hesitate, buck, or vibrate. In many cases, this happens due to an engine misfire. An engine misfire should not be ignored—it is important to visit an auto repair shop so you can have the issue fixed before your engine is damaged beyond repair. Luckily, most causes of an engine misfire can be repaired if addressed promptly so you won't have to spend a large amount of money to have your vehicle's engine replaced. Some of the common causes of engine misfires include:
Bad Spark Plugs
Best case scenario, your engine misfiring may be caused by bad spark plugs. Spark plugs are inexpensive and it does not cost a lot to have them replaced. While small in size, spark plugs provide the electricity and power that is needed for combustion inside your engine. If one or more spark plugs is bad, combustion will not occur like it is supposed to, which can lead to engine misfires.
Unbalanced Air/Fuel Ratio
In order for an engine to operate properly, there must be an exact ratio of air to fuel. If this precise ratio is out of balance, your car will experience engine misfires. In many cases, an engine misfire due to an imbalance in the air/fuel ratio will occur when your vehicle is idling. There are several things that can cause an air/fuel imbalance inside your car's engine, including a faulty fuel pump, a clogged or dirty fuel pump filter, or problems with the intake gasket or EGR valve. If your car has an issue with the air/fuel ratio, an experienced mechanic will be able to diagnose the issue and determine what is causing it so repairs can be made.
Dirty Fuel Injectors
Fuel injectors are continually pumping fuel into your engine, so over time they can become very dirty or clogged with buildup and debris. When this happens, they will no longer be able to provide the amount of fuel that your engine needs, which is why it will misfire. Dirty or clogged fuel injectors do not need to be replaced, but they will need to be cleaned out by a mechanic to resolve the issue. After you have dirty fuel injectors cleaned, consider adding fuel injector cleaner to your gas tank to help prevent the problem from occurring again in the future.
For more information, contact local professionals like those found at Olson's Auto Body.