As a car owner, you have most likely asked yourself at one time or another how to know if a car engine is bad. Despite your best efforts to maintain your vehicle running safe and in good condition, you may notice certain symptoms that make you wonder if there’s anything is wrong with the engine. Fortunately, you can address symptoms of engine problems before other complications occur.
- Engine light Proceed with caution if you notice that the engine light goes on. Before taking your car to the shop, check all gauges on the dashboard for signs of overheating or low oil pressure. If all gauges have normal readings, check the gas cap. A loose gas cap can also cause the check-engine light to go on.
- Surging or misfiring Notice whether the engine surges or misfires, as it could be a sign that the engine is running too hot.
- Hesitation Look for engine hesitation when you press the gas pedal. If the engine does not respond immediately or appears bogged down, your car could be experiencing mechanical problems that affect the engine. Possible causes could be faulty spark plugs, ignition problems, clogged fuel filter or dirty air filter.
- Excessive oil consumption Check the oil level. It it’s too low or you need to add to a quart of oil or more each time you check the oil level, your vehicle is consuming oil excessively, and the car engine could be bad. Reasons for low oil level are worn piston rings or a worn out gasket. Another possibility could be that you need to replace the head gasket.
Although a bad car engine normally involves a considerable investment, addressing car engine symptoms as soon as possible is the best way to reduce the financial risk. Car engine components generally work synergistically. When a component does not work properly and you don’t address the problem, it could affect other engine parts. Therefore, take note of any bad engine signs and have the problem fixed as soon as possible to avoid needless frustration.