16575 Gratiot Road, Hemlock, MI 48626

Power Loss During Acceleration: Top Causes and Solutions

starting the car or stopping engine sitting on driver's seat | Hemlock Auto & Alignment

When you step on the accelerator, you expect instant response. However, there are times when the vehicle might feel sluggish and unresponsive. This isn’t just frustrating, it can also pose a danger, especially when quick acceleration is needed, such as overtaking another vehicle or merging onto a highway. Hemlock Auto & Alignment in Hemlock, MI, is equipped to diagnose and resolve car acceleration issues.

Causes of Power Loss During Acceleration

Various factors can lead to acceleration issues:

Fuel System Issues that Cause Vehicle Power Loss in Hemlock MI

When the fuel system is compromised, your vehicle can suffer power loss. Some fuel-related factors that cause loss of acceleration include:

  • Clogged Fuel Filter: Replace it pursuant to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • Fuel Pump Issues: Replace the fuel pump if it is malfunctioning. To increase the longevity of the fuel pump, never let your tank get below a quarter of a tank.
  • Fuel Injector Problems: Have the injectors professionally cleaned every year as part of preventative maintenance.

Air Intake and Exhaust System Issues that Cause Power Loss During Acceleration

The engine requires air to run properly, and what goes in must go out. Issues with the air intake and exhaust system that can cause acceleration problems include:

  • Clogged Air Filter: Check the air filter every month and replace it when it’s dirty.
  • Exhaust System Blockages: Clogged catalytic converters can block the flow of exhaust gas and cause poor acceleration. Replace the catalytic converter.

Ignition System Malfunctions that Cause Acceleration Issues

A malfunctioning ignition system can cause poor acceleration. This system starts the combustion process in the cylinders. Issues may include:

  • Worn or Broken Spark Plugs: Replace all spark plugs at the same time. Always follow the manufacturer’s recommended interval for replacing the plugs.
  • Ignition Coil Malfunction: Failing coils can cause misfires. Replace any coil that is failing. On a coil-over-plug setup, it’s best to replace all the coils at once. They only last so long, which means the others will likely start to fail.

Engine Sensors and Control Module Problems that Cause Vehicle Power Loss

Vehicle manufacturers design engines with an electronic control module (ECM) and an array of sensors and senders that communicate with the ECM to control the air-to-fuel mixture and exhaust-related components in a vehicle. Certain components can cause loss of acceleration, including:

  • Mass airflow sensor.
  • Throttle position sensor.
  • Oxygen sensor.
  • Camshaft phaser solenoid.

In many cases, these components need to be replaced, though your auto tech will also check the wiring and other components that might cause these sensors and solenoids to send a bad reading.

Transmission Problems that Cause Car Acceleration Problems

The transmission transfers power from the engine to the wheels. When the transmission has issues, the power doesn’t make it to the wheels. Some issues that may affect acceleration include:

  • Manual Transmission: Slipping Clutch: Replace the clutch.
  • Automatic Transmission: Slipping gears and low transmission fluid. Flush the fluid and change the filter. If that doesn’t rectify the issue, take the vehicle to Hemlock Auto and Alignment for diagnosis and repair.

Engine Mechanical Issues that Cause Power Loss During Acceleration

Sometimes, the power loss can be caused by engine mechanical issues, including:

  • Loss of Compression: Several things could cause a loss of compression, including worn piston rings, blown head gasket and damaged valves. These repairs require tearing down the engine. In the case of issues with the rings, it’s best to rebuild or replace the engine.
  • Timing Belt / Chain: Worn timing belts or chains cause the timing of the valves to be off. Replace the timing chain or timing belt.

Solutions for Acceleration Issues

Many acceleration issues can be prevented with timely preventative maintenance, which encompasses tune-ups, filter replacements, fluid changes, and the timely replacement of timing belts or chains.

Contact Hemlock Auto & Alignment in Hemlock MI

When you need transmission maintenance, including a flush and filter replacement and transmission repair, contact Hemlock Auto & Alignment at (989) 642-4423 for an appointment. We are conveniently located at 16575 Gratiot Rd., Hemlock MI.