Has your vehicle been acting up? Is it making odd noises or operating differently? If so, it’s important to acknowledge that certain out-of-the-ordinary occurrences may indicate impending engine failure. Though a number of internal issues can cause observable changes in the way your vehicle operates, certain signs, when ignored, can cause severe, potentially irreparable problems with your engine. Below, the auto mechanics at AA Auto Tech outline 5 signs of engine damage you should never ignore.


Illuminated Check Engine Light

No surprises here — if the check engine symbol on your dash lights up, you’ve got an engine problem. That said, a wide variety of issues — both minor and major — can cause that light to illuminate, and some are far more pressing than others.


To determine what’s causing your check engine light to turn on, you’ll need to schedule an appointment with an auto mechanic who can run your engine’s error codes. After a professional diagnostic test, you’ll have a better idea of which repairs or parts replacements may be necessary.


Loss of Engine Power

If your vehicle has a combustion engine (most do), it relies on a four-stroke combustion cycle to convert fuel into usable power. But when there’s an issue with even one of those strokes — intake stroke, compression stroke, combustion stroke, or exhaust stroke — your vehicle won’t be capable of sustaining its normal level of power during operation. If you’ve noticed your vehicle fails to accelerate as quickly as it once did or it seems to lose power during operation, visit a licensed auto mechanic for an engine diagnostic.


Declining Fuel Economy

Has your gas mileage dropped off recently? If so, your engine may have a problem with its combustion stroke. If you’re looking for a quick fix, a store-bought fuel cleaner can help bring your gas mileage back up to par, but there’s no telling if it’ll stay there.


In some cases, a simple engine tune-up can also correct the issue, but again, those results may be temporary. To maintain long-term fuel economy and ensure your engine remains in safe, operational condition, your best bet is to schedule an engine diagnostic with a licensed mechanic.


Strange Sounds

Does your vehicle make odd noises when you start it up? How about during operation? Popping, hissing, backfiring, and knocking sounds are all major red flags that no driver should ever ignore. If your vehicle is making strange sounds, visit an engine repair specialist as soon as you possibly can — your safety may be at stake.


Stalling Engine

If you own an automatic transmission vehicle and your engine stalls out, either immediately after startup or during routine operation, that’s never a good sign. Typically, an engine that stalls out has an issue with its intake stroke — either the air/fuel ratio is off or the engine isn’t receiving the right spark to keep it operating.


In either case, a standard engine tuneup can usually correct the problem, but if you ignore the issue, get ready to deal with more severe problems down the road. To save yourself some cash (and unnecessary stress), get an engine diagnostic as quickly as you can.


Need an Engine Diagnostic? AA Auto Tech Is At Your Service

If your engine appears to be acting up, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team at AA Auto Tech in Hastings, MN. Since 1995, we’ve proudly served Twin Cities drivers with comprehensive auto repair and maintenance, and we’re ready to help you, too! To learn more about our services or schedule your appointment, give our team a call today at 651-437-2218 or send us a message on our contact page, and we’ll be in touch.