While today’s engines are more efficient and at times less gas-guzzling compared to their predecessors, some engine problems continue to plague various vehicle owners. One of the most common engine problems encountered by drivers is a misfiring engine. There are times when it’s not the total engine or the complete number of engine cylinders that misfires, sometimes it’s just a single engine cylinder that constantly misfires every time the vehicle is used. And that’s just the tip of an iceberg.
If you’ve experienced this problem then it’s highly possible that the misfiring engine or engine cylinder indicates trouble in the type of fuel you use or the entire fuel system. Worn out engine parts, faulty silencers and a damaged air cleaner can also act as culprits behind this auto predicament.
To find out what causes engine cylinders to misfire, you first need a technical manual to determine the right procedures needed in diagnosing this problem. Keep in mind that these procedures will vary depending on the type of engine you’re using. This is because engine parts and equipments also vary based on the type of vehicle you own.
If the problem is fuel contamination, then repair and a complete overhaul may be necessary.
If, however, your cylinder constantly misfires, then the problem could be rooted in the fuel pump cutout mechanism. There are a number of fuel pumps that makes use of this type of mechanism to enable the system to cut off fuel supply on a specific cylinder in order for the compression to be measured efficiently. If a single cylinder is constantly misfiring, then it’s best to check out your engaged cutout mechanism if you have one, and to remove it or disengage it if you’re using it for standard engine operation.
Another possible reason behind a constantly misfiring cylinder is the loss of compression. This problem could be caused by a sticking or leaking cylinder valve, a leaking cylinder head gasket, worn rings, liners or pistons or a cracked cylinder block. If upon diagnosis you find that this is the root of your problem, then make sure you check each of your cylinder to find out their corresponding compression pressures.
Some drivers prefer checking for compression pressures when their engines are left running at slow speed. To do this, you will need a pressure indicator. Note down the cylinder compression pressure and conduct this check on each one of your cylinders.
Consult your owner’s manual or any text that would tell you the specified psi needed by each engine cylinder. The cylinder’s pressure should go no lower than the required psi. If you find that one of your cylinders contains substantially lower pressure than all the other present cylinders, then you have a compression leak, which normally leads to the disassembly of the cylinder, inspection and subsequent repair.
Also check your cylinder head gaskets and valve seats for leakage, your valve stems for sticking and cylinder head or block for damage. If these parts are in great condition, then the problem may lie in the insufficient sealing of your ride’s piston rings. If you need to replace your piston rings then make sure you find high quality replacement parts to prevent further damage on your engine’s cylinders.
The problem with this auto issue is that a misfiring engine cylinder could be caused by a lot of different factors. If you have trouble identifying the root of your problem, then it’s always best to consult with a professional mechanic before you replace any auto parts.