Most Common Car Problems

No matter what car you drive, you will likely see the dreaded check engine light at some point. What’s worse is that it’s next to impossible to know whether it’s a serious issue that needs attention right away, if it’s something minor or your indicator is malfunctioning. Some used cars, depending on their upkeep, year and make, may break down more frequently, but even the most reliable certified pre-owned vehicles and new cars experience mechanical issues. Some issues can be easy to spot, some can be difficult to pinpoint. Here are some of the most common car problems drivers face after seeing the check engine light.

Bad Oxygen Sensor

Your car’s oxygen sensor measures how much unburned oxygen is in the exhaust and tells your car how much fuel is in the tank. A functioning oxygen sensor helps your car achieve its best possible gas mileage. Things to watch and listen for when dealing with a poor oxygen sensor include decreased fuel efficiency, rough idling, hard start problems and a jerking feeling when accelerating.

Loose, Missing or Damaged Fuel Cap

Loose or missing fuel caps cause an estimated one to two percent decrease in fuel efficiently. That may not seem like much, but it still shouldn’t be ignored, especially because it will force that pesky check engine light to remain on. If your light is on, it’s a good idea to check that the gas cap is in place and screwed on tightly. If you forgot it at the pump or it’s damaged and needs replacing, a new gas cap can usually be purchased for less than $10.

Exhaust Gas Recirculation Valve

The exhaust gas recirculation valve is a critical part of your car’s emissions system. Keeping it in working order allows your vehicle to run smoother and more efficiently. There are a few telltale signs that your vehicle’s exhaust gas recirculation valve is breaking down. You should primarily be on the lookout for rough idling and engine performance issues, such as reduction in power, acceleration and fuel efficiency.

Broken Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter’s primary function is to convert harmful emissions created during the combustion process into less harmful emissions and reduce exhaust gases. When it needs service, it’s usually due to a smaller part, like the oxygen sensor or spark plugs, going bad first. Keeping up with maintenance can go a long way toward avoiding the need to replace the catalytic converter. When your catalytic converter begins to deteriorate, you may experience a decrease in gas mileage and loss of acceleration.

Gearbox Issues

It’s not a frequent issue, but service to your gearbox is one of the biggest repairs your vehicle may need someday, which is why regular upkeep on the rest of your engine is so crucial. When you have gearbox issues, you’ll typically experience problems shifting, some unusual whining noises, a burning odor, grinding while shifting and leaking transmission fluid. It’s best not to wait if you’re noticing these kinds of symptoms. The longer you wait, the more extensive the damage is likely to be.

Mass Air Flow Sensor

Your vehicle’s mass air flow sensor tells your car how much fuel to add to the engine based on incoming airflow. Having a faulty mass air flow sensor can cause poor emissions, stalling and a decrease in gas mileage. Your mass air flow sensor going on the fritz could be due to many factors, including a clogged or incorrectly installed air filter.

Misfiring Spark Plug

Your car contains several spark plugs under the hood. Though they’re a small piece of your engine puzzle, your spark plugs need to be operating for your car to function correctly. The role of the spark plug is to ignite compressed fuel in the cylinders. When they misfire, they create poor fuel economy, jolty acceleration and they can damage your catalytic converter if not attended to soon enough.Luckily, replacing spark plugs is one of the least expensive auto repairs, and they can be replaced rather quickly and easily by a good automotive technician.

Is Your Check Engine Light On?

No matter how common a car problem is, you should still treat each one with careful attention by having a trusted automotive technician diagnose and attend to the problem as soon as you can. Rosenberg drivers, if your check engine light is on, drive into Texan Hyundai where our expert automotive techs will diagnose and service your vehicle with care. For more information about service at Texan Hyundai, contact (855) 413-5029.
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