Virginia Auto Service

Why Maintaining the Right Mix of Fuel and Air is Crucial to Your Car Engine

The right air-to-fuel ratio is an important aspect of good engine maintenance. When this ratio is maintained, the circumstances inside the internal combustion chamber of the engine are ideal for ignition and general functioning of the car engine.

It is the job of the control unit of the engine to control the various components, including the air flow sensors, oxygen intake and fuel injectors, as well as emission sensors.

In case there is an issue with any of these components, it could impact the amount of fuel injected into the combustion chamber.

If too much fuel is injected, and the ratio of the oxygen is poor or less than the ideal amount, the fuel mix inside the combustion chamber is said to be a “rich fuel mix.”

why maintaining the right mix of fuel and air is crucial to your car engine

Signs Your Car Engine Has Rich Fuel Mix

The car engine is designed to run on a set air-fuel mixture. Any time this ratio shifts in proportion (too much fuel and less oxygen), it can be harmful to the running of the engine and impact the overall performance of your car. Here are a few important signs to watch out for which indicate “rich fuel mix.”

Check Engine Light

Any issues with the engine will light up the “check engine” signal on your car’s dashboard. Keep in mind:

  • There is no way of knowing what exactly is causing the “check engine” light to light up on your dashboard until you have your car checked by a professional mechanic.
  • In several instances, when car owners ignore the signal for too long, the engine damage can be significant.
  • Repairs or engine replacement costs are among the highest, which is why our advice is to seek professional help as soon as possible.

Poor Gas Mileage

Excess fuel in the combustion chamber will have a direct impact on the way your car consumes gas. You will notice the following if the air-fuel mix in your car is rich:

  • Mileage per gallon rate will drop substantially, and this is no good in a city like Phoenix where everything is rather spread out.
  • You will have to refuel far more often, even when running the same distance or for shorter distances.
  • Addressing the rich fuel mixture issue is the only way to reverse the poor mileage.

High Level of Carbon Emission

An excess of carbon emission levels from the engine is a pretty good indicator of rich fuel mixture. It is good practice to get your emissions tested as part of routine maintenance.

Faulty oxygen sensors could also be the reason for failing an emission test. Either way, it is best to test the carbon emissions and identify the root cause of the issue in case you fail the test.

Dip in Car Performance Levels

The presence of too much fuel and insufficient oxygen will impact the performance of the engine leading to an overall dip in the car’s performance.

  • The air-fuel mix might still be able to power the ignition and provide steady compression, however, the car’s performance will take a gradual hit.
  • Over a period, the condition will get worse and eventually start impacting the engine performance.
  • The engine’s running will not feel smooth.
  • You might also notice rough idling (the car feels bouncier while driving).
  • Remember, when the car engine performs undress stress, it has a cascading effect on other parts of the car, including the mechanical and electrical parts.
  • Keep an eye on the tachometer – the needle will go crazy (bouncing all over the place) if there is a rough idling issue.

Key Symptoms

Low fuel efficiency is a major irritant not only because of the cost factor, but also because a car guzzling fuel at a fast rate will eventually develop all kinds of engine problems.

A drop in the car’s overall performance, low fuel efficiency, and any of the above-mentioned symptoms should worry you if you want to avoid engine damage.

Addressing the rich fuel mixture issue early on will help you save hundreds or thousands of dollars in the long run.

Reliable Car Maintenance with Professional Auto Experts!

If you noticed any of the above-mentioned issues with your car, don’t delay. It is best to have your car checked up by a professional mechanic.

For a quick diagnosis and fast resolution for any kind of auto trouble, give Virginia Auto Service a call today. You can reach us at 602-266-0200 or schedule a visit with us online to have the issue fixed as soon as possible!