Q: Flashing Check Engine Light is on. The engine shakes at idle and has low power.

asked by on

My car started to shakes like a a piston isnt firing? How would I know,if is a dead cylinder or a bad coil I recently replaced sparkplugs and oiil I know it could be mechanical or electronics so I would like to know which order should I tske to diagnose the problem

My car has 170000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, the first task is to extract the problem codes which are causing the Check Engine light to flash. Most auto parts stores will do this for free. I would suspect plug wires next, and check the condition of the distributor cap and rotor while checking the plug wires.

Pull one plug wire off at a time, then start the engine. If disconnecting the plug in one specific cylinder does NOT make a difference in how the engine runs, that plug wire is your first suspect. With the age of the car, and your mileage, replacing all of the wires is the right decision, even if only one wire is bad.

To avoid any unnecessary repairs, I would recommend having a misfiring inspection completed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to diagnose this problem, get an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Flashing Check Engine Light is on. The engine shakes at idle and has low power.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Car outlets not working.

If none of your car's power outlets are working, the first thing I would check would be the fuses. A blown fuse is the most common reason as to why interior electronics fail, so a simple replacement of an inexpensive...

Q: Q: Bad spark plug

If the spark plug isn't firing, the spark plug gap could possibly be to wide from high mileage. This plug could also be physically damaged or the spark plugs porcelain could be cracked. If the spark plug wires are cut...

Q: What kind of oil filter should I use?

Just like engine oil, there are several different types of oil filters for you to choose from to use during an oil change. To choose the proper oil filter for your vehicle. Check the requirements for your vehicle. Buy...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.