Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls
  1. Home
  2. Articles
  3. Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Fuel Injector

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Fuel Injector

fuel injector

Fuel injectors are an engine management component that is found on the vast majority of road going vehicles. They are a part of the vehicle’s fuel system and act as the nozzles that spray the fuel into the engine. They are controlled by the engine computer and operate by spraying the fuel in specific patterns and at specific timed intervals that will optimize engine performance. They are found on the vast majority of road going vehicles in one form or another. Because they are a part of the fuel system, any problems with the fuel injectors can cause all sorts of engine performance issues, that can sometimes even render the vehicle undrivable. Usually a bad or failing fuel injector will produce a few symptoms that can alert the driver of a potential issue

1. Engine misfires and decrease in power, acceleration, and fuel efficiency

One of the most common symptoms of a potential problem with a fuel injector is engine performance issues. If any of the vehicle’s fuel injectors have an issue, the air fuel ratio of the engine will be upset, which can result in performance problems. A faulty fuel injector can cause the vehicle to experience misfires, a loss in power and acceleration, a reduction in fuel efficiency, and in severe cases can cause stalling or prevent the engine from running at all.

2. Fuel odor

Another common symptom of a potential issue with a fuel injector is a fuel smell. Injectors hold high pressures which over time can cause them to leak at the nozzle or at the seal that is located at the tip of the injector. A leaky injector will excess fuel into the combustion chamber of the engine, while a leaky seal will leak fuel at the base of the injector. Both can affect engine performance, specifically fuel efficiency, and both will usually produce a noticeable fuel smell. Any sort of fuel smells should be addressed as soon as possible in order to prevent them from becoming a potential safety hazard.

3. Check Engine Light comes on

Another symptom of a potential issue with a fuel injector is an illuminated Check Engine Light. If any of the fuel injectors become clogged and cause a misfire, or experience an electrical issue the computer will set off the Check Engine Light to alert the driver of the issue. The Check Engine Light can also be activated by a wide variety of other engine management issues, so having the computer scanned for trouble codes is highly recommended.

Because of their role as the nozzles that provide the fuel that allows the engine to run, fuel injectors are a very important component to the overall operation and drivability of the vehicle. If your vehicle is displaying any of the symptoms above, or you suspect that your vehicle may be having an issue with one of the fuel injectors, have the vehicle diagnosed by a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic, to determine if any of the fuel injectors need to be replaced.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Still not sure about your car's issue?
Diagnose your car
What kind of issue are you experiencing?
Brakes are squeaking
Car is not starting
Car is overheating
Car is shaking (vibrating)
Fluids are leaking
Heating and A/C
Smoke or steam is coming out of the car
Warning light is on
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

How to Get a Louisiana Driver's Permit
s licensing program. The first step in this program is to obtain...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in Idaho
The state of Idaho offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch in the...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in New Mexico
The state of New Mexico offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch...


Related questions

Q: Q: No fuel pressure

Lack of fuel pressure can be caused by a failing fuel pump or a clogged fuel filter. Depending on the fuel pressure specification, the fuel pump can be condemned. A proper diagnostic inspection should be performed in order to prove...

Q: Acts like its going to stall during idle, sometimes hesitates to go

It sounds like you have a vacuum leak or intake air leak in the hose from the mass air sensor and the throttle body. If the tube has a crack in it somewhere, it will run rough and when you...

Q: How do I view the range in the multi-information display?

The range setting shows you approximately how many miles you can travel on your current tank of gas. The distance is estimated based on the fuel remaining in your fuel tank, as well as your average fuel economy. To view...