How a Vacuum Leak Affects Your Engine’s Performance

Vacuum is more important to your automobile’s engine than you realize. Your automobile uses a vacuum that is produced in the combustion chamber to power accessories and components. If you end up with a vacuum leak through one of the vacuum hoses, your vehicle’s performance will be affected. Pit Shop Auto Repair lists the signs of a vacuum leak below so you know what to look for in your car, truck, or utility vehicle.

Acceleration Performance Loss

One thing that happens when you have a vacuum leak in the engine is that the leak itself introduces more air into the engine’s environment. This can turn a normal fuel mixture into a lean one, i.e., one that is richer in air than in gasoline. Consequently, your engine will be fuel-starved, and it may be hesitant to respond when you press down on the accelerator to pick up speed.

Dashboard Warning Light

This change in the engine’s environment might also cause the engine control module to turn on the check engine light on your vehicle’s dashboard. This is because the engine control module has been advised that there is a problem in the combustion chamber by one of the many sensors found in your automobile’s engine. The check engine light won’t turn off until you get the vacuum leak fixed.

Hesitating Engine That Stalls

Aside from the acceleration problems discussed above, you may also have problems while your car, truck, or UV is in motion. Your engine may sputter or hesitate. It may hiccup and misfire. In severe cases, the engine will stall. This, again, is because there is too much air in the engine and not enough gasoline. The air is outweighing the fuel and causing these performance issues.

Hissing or Sucking Sounds

Depending on how big of a vacuum leak you have, you may be able to hear it. In most cases, vacuum leaks make hissing or sucking sounds. Many people we have talked to describe the sucking sound as that of the vacuum hose, and we find that to be true here in our shop, too.

RPMs That Are Higher Than Normal

If you happen to notice the needle dancing on your tachometer, this is a sign that the engine is getting spurts of air through a vacuum leak. Often times when the engine has a vacuum leak, the RPMs will be higher than normal or sporadic.

Pit Shop Auto Repair is the best auto service shop in Libertyville, IL, and we’d be happy to inspect your engine to see if you have a vacuum leak.