Is a Vacuum Leak Harmful to My Car?

A vacuum leak can be harmful to your car, truck, or utility vehicle. Depending on how bad the vacuum leak is, you may end up with any of the signs of a vacuum leak below, or, worse, you may end up with a stalled engine that you cannot get restarted. What makes a vacuum leak harmful to the engine is that it introduces excess air into the combustion chamber and also affects the accessories and components the vacuum pressure powers. Auto Solutions can help if your vehicle has a vacuum leak.

Engine Hesitation and Stalling

When your combustion mixture has more air than fuel in it, which can happen with a vacuum leak, your engine will be starved of the liquid gold that you put into the gas tank every time you fill up. The consequence of this is engine hesitation and even stalling if there is too much air in the combustion chamber. The most common place where a vacuum leak occurs is out of a vacuum hose, and once this happens, your engine will fill with air.

High or Sporadic RPMs

You may also notice strange engine behavior when you are sitting at an idle. You might feel your engine jerk or vibrate and, if you look down at the tachometer, you may see that your RPMs are either too high or fluctuating between high and low. This is a sign of a vacuum leak because your engine is getting hit with the spurts of air flowing out of the leaking vacuum hose. If the RPMs get low enough, your automobile will stall.

Hissing or Sucking Noises

In most cases, you might be able to hear the engine vacuum leak. Start your car and leave the parking brake set. With the vehicle in park and idling, pop the hood and listen carefully for hissing, squealing, or sucking sounds coming from somewhere in the engine. If you hear these noises, look to see if you can identify from where they are coming. You might be able to see the leaking vacuum hose which will confirm that you have a vacuum leak.

Warning Light Illumination

Finally, because a vacuum leak creates a lean fuel mixture in the engine, your vehicle’s engine control unit will likely turn on the check engine dashboard warning light to let you know there is a problem going on in the combustion chamber. You may notice the above signs of a vacuum leak along with the check engine warning, or you may not have any other symptoms of a vacuum leak. Your only indication will be the check engine light.

Call Auto Solutions in Orlando, FL, to schedule an appointment for an engine inspection. We will locate your vehicle’s vacuum leak and fix it.

Photo by killerb10 from Getty Images Signature via Canva Pro

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