Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

How Long Does an Electronic Spark Control Last?

Electronic Spark Control

The job of the electronic spark control is to control the engine timing. This part can also be called the "knock sensor", as it monitors any unusual knocking, or vibration that may be happening in the engine. This is important because the vibrations can lead to damage of the actual engine, so it's important to monitor. The knocking happens when the engine doesn't fire as it should and when it should.

It's the powertrain control module that is able to send adjustments to the electronic spark control module. The engine timing can be slowed down or sped up depending on what is needed to aid in the vibration. All this is happening while you are driving your vehicle so you don’t have to worry about a thing.

Of course all of this is true except for when the electronic spark control reaches the end of its lifeline, and then a number of symptoms become apparent. While there is no set lifespan for this part, nor is regular maintenance required, it can become faulty over time. Once this part stops working it won’t cause any safety concerns for you, but you are risking serious damage to your engine, which can cost a whole lot to repair.

Here’s a look at some signs that it may be time to replace your electronic spark control:

  • Your Check Engine Light will likely come on and will show either an ESC module code or a knock sensor code. A certified mechanic will be able to read the codes and diagnose the situation properly.

  • When you stop or accelerate you may hear a knocking sound that is coming from the engine. Since the electronic spark control isn't functioning, it won't be able to make the necessary adjustments to stop the knocking.

  • From a stopped position your engine may stall or stumble as you start to accelerate. This can become frustrating and even dangerous to other drivers since there is no warning of your vehicle suddenly stalling.

The electronic spark control, also known as the “knock sensor” plays an important role in keeping engine vibrations in check. Without this part working properly, you risk causing serious damage to the engine. If you’re experiencing any of the above mentioned symptoms and suspect your electronic spark control is in need of replacement, get a diagnostic or book an electronic spark control replacement service with a professional mechanic.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

P0222 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input
P0222 code definition Throttle/Pedal Position Switch/Sensor B Circuit Low Input What the P0222 code means The manufacturer specifies a range of acceptable voltage to be produced from the throttle position...
How to Buy Fuel Treatments
Adding a fuel additive to your gas tank when you fill up is one way to clean vital engine parts of deposits, improve the performance of your engine,...
How to Transfer a Car Title in Idaho
In order to prove ownership of a car, you must have the title. However, when a car is sold, given away or inherited, the title needs...


Related questions

Q: How and what tools do I need to replace the sensor accelerator padle

Hello, thanks for writing in about your Chevrolet Cobalt. To replace your accelerator sensor paddle all you will need is a small ratchet, an 8 mm or 10 mm short socket, and a small screwdriver to get the connector off....

Q: Car shut down while driving

I think you're right about it being an electrical problem. It sounds like you're describing a charging system failure. I can't reconcile why this would begin with the power door locks, except that many of these modules begin behaving oddly...

Q: Multiple warning lights due to electronic control module - 2009 Kia Borrego

As the problem is fairly uncommon, it is likely the engine ecu did experience a processing failure and caused many warning lights to illuminate once the computer lost communication with the other systems. All of the systems where warnings came...