What Happens When Microscopic Dirt Particles Get into Your Fuel System?

If your car is to function as it should and accelerate cleanly at all times, you need to ensure that the fuel injection system is in tiptop condition. If you don't know too much about this particular piece of automotive wizardry, what should you know and what can happen if the injectors begin to malfunction?

Understanding the System

On a modern-day performance engine, delicate fuel injectors sit within the intake manifold. They are very precisely engineered components and have miniature holes through which the fuel is injected under pressure. An electronic fuel pump delivers the fuel from the tank to what is known as a fuel rail. This component manages the delivery to each injector so that it sprays the fuel into each combustion chamber at precisely the right moment.

All it takes is a very small volume of fuel, which is delivered as an aerosol. The liquid is mixed with air and compressed by each piston which causes a detonation. In turn, this forces the piston down to turn the crankshaft.

Dealing with Contamination

Between the fuel pump and the injection system is a filter. Usually, this will gather any contamination that may have been present in the fuel itself or the tank. Occasionally, however, microscopic particles may make their way through to the injectors and, when this happens, can cause a blockage. It doesn't take much, after all, to jam everything up as the holes in each fuel injector are so tiny.

Tell-Tale Signs

If dirt gets into the injectors, you may notice that the engine begins to misfire. Alternatively, the vehicle may hesitate when you are trying to power past a slower car. Also, the car may use a lot more fuel than usual, and you may need to spend more money at the pump.

Exacerbating the Issue

If one fuel injector plays up, it may not take long before the others start to join the party. If the engine begins to misfire due to early signs of a problem, this can leave excess fuel within each chamber, and this can burn off on the overrun. If that happens, carbon deposits may start to build up on the inner side of each injector and will worsen the overall problem.

Fixing the Issue

To fix all of these problems, a mechanic will need to remove each injector and clean it properly using special tools. Occasionally, they may need to replace a set of injectors if the old ones are too badly worn. Learn more about the process by contacting European car repair services.