5 Symptoms of Bad Fuel Injectors

January 31, 2022 4:30 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Fuel injectors are one of the most important parts of an engine, making sure fuel is injected at the right angle and pressure to be mixed with air in the cylinder. If you think your engine’s poor performance might be a result of bad fuel injectors, here’s what you need to know.

The Function of the Fuel Injector

Whether you drive a truck for work or you rely on your tractor to tend to your farm, you should have a basic understanding of engines and the parts within. The combustion process only works with the right mixture of fuel and air, and that mixture starts at the tips of the fuel injectors.

Fuel injectors ensure that fuel is injected into the cylinder at the right angle and with the right pressure, which ensures a proper fuel-to-air ratio. When these fuel injectors become clogged, they can’t inject fuel into the cylinder and your engine performance may suffer as a result.

Just like a bad fuel pump can interfere with your fuel injectors, bad fuel injectors can have a major effect on the combustion process. If your fuel injectors aren’t injecting fuel at a precise angle to be combined with air, you won’t get the right mixture of fuel and air for combustion. This may be a result of a clogged fuel injector, which is a result of the minor impurities in the fuel and the dirt and grime that can be introduced into a diesel engine’s fuel system.

Because fuel injectors are such an important part of the combustion process that powers your engine, taking care of your fuel injectors is essential. 

Signs to Watch For

The fact of the matter is, your fuel injectors are probably going to get clogged at some point. Fuel isn’t as clean as you might think, and even a small clog can lead to ignition and performance problems. Fortunately, there are a handful of symptoms of bad fuel injectors that you can keep an eye out for. If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to have a mechanic check out your fuel injectors.


If your fuel injectors are clogged or otherwise not working properly, you might notice your engine misfiring. Engine misfiring occurs when one of the cylinders in your engine doesn’t produce power, which can happen for lots of reasons. However, clogged fuel injectors are one of the most common causes of engine misfires, and those misfires can cost you a lot in wasted fuel.

Rough Idling

When you start up an engine and let it sit and idle for a while, it should sound fairly smooth. If you leave your engine idling and you notice a rough, inconsistent sound, that may be a sign that you’ve got bad fuel injectors. Rough idling can also be caused problems with the other parts of your vehicle’s fuel system, including the fuel pump and fuel tank strainer. If you feel like your engine has been idling rougher than it normally does, make sure you have your fuel system checked out by a professional.

Poor Efficiency

A sudden decrease in fuel economy is another sign that you’ve got a fuel injector problem. Your entire fuel system plays an important role in optimizing fuel economy by making sure crucial parts of your engine have the right amount of fuel. If anything gets clogged or stops sending fuel properly, chances are you’ll notice a drop in mileage and a decrease in performance.

Engine Won’t Start

When you turn your key in the ignition and nothing happens, that’s a bad way to start your day. Unfortunately, this is one of the symptoms of late-stage fuel injector failure, so it could be a reality for you if you don’t take care of your fuel injectors. If your engine won’t start at all when you turn the key, that’s a sign that your fuel injectors are in seriously bad shape, which means you should have them checked and probably replaced.

RPM Gauge Changing Randomly

For the most part, you control what you see on the gauges in your vehicle. If you speed up, the speedometer goes up. If you’ve noticed sudden fluctuation of the RPM gauge for no apparent reason, you could be experiencing one of the symptoms of bad fuel injectors. A vehicle that changes RPMs even when it hasn’t changed gears is a sign of a fuel injector problem, so make sure you visit a mechanic if you’re experiencing this problem.

Replace Your Fuel Injectors

When you’ve got fuel injector problems, Thompson Diesel is here to help. Whether you can’t get your tractor started to work the fields or your truck is burning way too much gas for the long drives you’re taking, we can replace your fuel injectors and get you back on track. Contact Thompson Diesel to learn more.


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