Q: Replaced my engine. Does the new one need to be adjusted to the higher elevation?

asked by on February 20, 2017

I replaced my engine after I blew my first one. I live in Salt Lake City and the engine I bought came from a wrecking lot in Florida. With my old engine I could pull my boat just fine but this new engine really really struggles. What could be the difference? Do I need to have this second engine adjust for the higher elevation where I live?

My car has 86000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Loss of power Inspection $79.99 - $99.99 Get a Quote

Check all of the sensors and make sure that they are plugged in all the way. The computer system with the sensors are designed to adjust themselves as elevation changes. This is why all vehicles today have computers in them with injection systems and not mechanical systems with carburetors. If the system is not adjusting, then the intake pressure sensor needs replaced or cleaned. Make sure that the engine is timed properly. A single tooth off on the timing will cause the engine to have a loss of power as well. To check this, remove all spark plugs and disable the ignition system. Hook up a compression tester gauge and check all 6 cylinders. If your cylinders are between 70 and 130, then there is a problem with the timing or the engine was not built correctly. There should be between 150 and 230 on the compression. Most vehicles have about 180 to 195 on compression when driven on lots of miles. If you need further assistance with your engine having a loss of power, then seek out a professional, such as one from Your Mechanic, to help you.

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

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


Experienced Mechanic?

Earn up to $65/hr

What others are asking

Will not accelarate over 20mph and has a P0430 code

Hello and thank you for contacting Your Mechanic. The code P0430 means that the catalyst system efficiency is below threshold on bank 2. This is in relation to the catalytic converter not functioning correctly, but this code will not make...

Hi, I am hearing a very loud "rolling thunder" noise while driving that gets louder at higher speeds.. What could be the issue?

Hello. There are several components that will cause these noises when accelerating. Typically they are related to the exhaust system. You may be experiencing an exhaust leak for one option. This can occur when a hole has found its way...

Code p0128

Code P0128 is engaged specifically when the engine itself does not get to operating temperature in a specified time period. The only things that can cause this problem is an issue with the thermostat, head temp sensor, and the coolant...

How does the active park assist system work?

Parallel parking is no fun, even if you’re an experienced veteran. If your car has the active park assist (APA) system, then you’ve got some extra help to make the process easier. This is an automated system that actually scans...

Truck will crank but will not start

The best way to approach a starting issue like this is to break it down and start with one system at a time. Keep it as simple as possible. If you have not already checked for spark, you will want...

Car squealing.

The pulleys on the engine or the tensioner is the cause. The belt could be bad also. I would recommend having a mechanic, like the certified ones at YourMechanic, come and check it out for you to see if this...

Opinion on cylinder deactivation system on GM trucks

GM has been trying to use cylinder deactivation in Cadillacs for years now. In my opinion they are not very good. GM's are notorious for having horrible electrical problems and now they are making engines with electronic mechanical cylinder deactivation....

Where to get back up camera repair?

Claimed by Kevin Gainer

Truck won't start after it gets hot. What can cause this?

This is a common sign of a faulty ignition coil. Ignition coils are coated with a varnish-like insulation that becomes brittle over time after being stretched then contracted repeated as the copper beneath them expands and contracts at a higher...

Related articles

How Do Rotor Engines Differ From Regular Engines?
Rotary engines use three-sided rotors inside an oblong housing instead of pistons. Rotary engines create lots of horsepower, but aren't as efficient.
What Does It Mean When an Engine "Knocks"?
If your engine is making a knocking noise it means there's a problem. The wrong fuel octane, carbon buildup, and bad spark plugs can cause knocking.
How to Diagnose a No-Spark or Loss of Power Condition on a Modern Car
Misfires caused by a loss of power condition on a car can be tricky to diagnose, but are necessary to fix to avoid further damage and costly repairs.