What is the Distributor all about?
Three factors (fuel, air, and ignition) are needed to power the modern internal combustion motor. The distributor houses a rotor that facilitates the spark necessary to ignite the fuel in a vehicle. The rotor turns within the distributor, connects with the ignition coil, and creates electric current. This current passes to the spark plugs, which deliver the current from the rotor to the combustion chamber and enable the car to start.
Keep in mind:
- A faulty distributor will prevent a vehicle from running properly, because there will be no spark generated to ignite the fuel in order to create combustion.
- Generally, a distributor is located near the engine, but tracing spark plug wires will lead to its exact location.
An inspection by one our expert mechanics can determine if the distributor is faulty. While the distributor may appear to be in working order from a visual inspection, it often needs to be dismantled complete to check the function of the rotor and other parts.
What common symptoms indicate you may need to replace the Distributor?
- Vehicle shakes abnormally while at an idling stop
- Vehicle stalls while at an idling stop
- Vehicle backfires
- Vehicle’s RPMs are not steady (varying widely instead of smoothly raising, lowering, or maintaining)
- High pitched squealing noise
- Car tries to start, but won’t completely turn over
How important is this service?
While a car may still start with a faulty distributor, the distributor will fail completely in time. If any of the above symptoms are being exhibited, it’s important to schedule an inspection to determine the cause, so that a repair can be completed. If the vehicle stalls and fails to re-start in traffic, it can quickly become a safety issue for all vehicle occupants.