What Can Cause A Diesel Engine To Lose Power?

The engine of a vehicle generates power by combusting a mixture of air and fuel. The energy generated by combustion is subsequently transferred to the wheels, causing the car to drive. The engine’s job is to do this function as efficiently as possible again and over again. However, the engine loses power for a variety of causes, resulting in a drop in performance. This is not an incurable mechanical ailment; it can be resolved with correct diagnosis of the issue. We’ll look at a few causes of power outages and how to remedy them in this article.

The purpose of the fuel filter is to filter the fuel before it enters the engine. The engine will not be able to work at its best if the fuel filter becomes clogged and the fuel does not reach the engine chamber in the proper quantity. While accelerating, you will notice a decrease of power and, at times, occasional jerks. To fix this problem, look for the gasoline filter in your car’s engine compartment or near the fuel tank in the trunk. If the fuel filter is clogged, you can either replace it yourself or get it replaced at your local mechanic shop.

To perform correctly, an engine requires clean air. The engine might be harmed if dust and other particles enter the combustion chamber. As a result, an air filter is employed to ensure that clean air reaches the motor. This filter removes dust and other dangerous particles from the air, however it wears out after roughly 3000-5000 miles (15000 to 30000 miles depending on driving circumstances). If you don’t replace this filter when it’s time, you’ll notice a drop in your car’s performance.

The exhaust system removes all of the engine’s hazardous and unneeded gases. The sooner these gases are expelled from the exhaust, the sooner the engine can restart combustion and produce greater power. However, if there is anything in the way, such as a clogged exhaust or a restrictive cat-converter, your engine will lose power. Aftermarket cleaners can help with clogged catalytic converters, but using a good fuel system additive every 3000 miles can help reduce the pollutants that cause the converter to clog in the first place, reducing the need to unclog it.

The Mass Airflow Sensor (MAF) determines how much air the vehicle requires to accelerate. When it receives that measurement, it communicates it to the ECU, which instructs the throttle to open as needed. You could lose a lot of power if the MAF isn’t working properly and isn’t sensing the airflow correctly. Heat and dust can cause sensors to fail. Cleaning them using a specific product on a regular basis can assist enhance their operation and, as a result, the engine’s efficiency.

The MAF detects the amount of air entering the engine, whereas the Oxygen sensor counts the number of gases leaving it. As a result, it’s in the exhaust pipe. If the MAF measurements match the Oxygen sensor readings, your automobile is in great working order. The oxygen sensor also impacts the fuel injection system, therefore it must function properly for your car to perform smoothly. Because of a faulty oxygen sensor, the engine will burn a high a/f mixture, lowering your fuel economy. Fortunately, sensors are relatively inexpensive and simple to repair.

Fuel injectors are devices that deliver fuel to the combustion chamber. They accomplish this by spraying high-pressure gasoline into the air. For combustion to take place, they must spray the exact amount of fuel into the chamber. The combustion cycle can be disturbed by even minor errors, resulting in a loss of power and, in the worst-case situation, damaged pistons. Carbon buildup from low-quality fuel is one of the most common causes of fuel injector failure. Carbon buildup can obstruct the injectors’ ability to spray fuel into the cylinders, resulting in a loss of performance. This problem can be solved by applying a high-quality fuel system cleaning.

The fuel pump is responsible for transferring fuel from the fuel tank to the engine. The fuel pump must be powerful enough to deliver fuel under high pressure. Fuel injectors will not be able to spray the necessary amount of fuel into the combustion chamber if the pressure is low, resulting in a loss of power. At low speeds, a malfunctioning gasoline pump may not cause problems, but when you need to accelerate quickly, you may be disappointed. Fortunately, gasoline pumps may be simply replaced.

Why does diesel engine lose power?

When a diesel engine loses power, it can be annoying, especially if you’re in the middle of a work. Understanding the problem, on the other hand, can go a long way toward resolving it.

When it’s hot, a diesel engine loses power because the energy from the fuel is used to heat the engine rather than power it. Clogged fuel filters or exhaust pipes, filthy air filters, dirty spark plugs, or inadequate compression are just a few of the issues that might cause this.

Why is my diesel not accelerating?

Your biggest nightmare comes true as you drive your diesel vehicle up to the on ramp and begin driving on the highway: your truck won’t accelerate.

Should you pull over to the side, embarrassed at what you’ve allowed your automobile become, or keep driving, slowing traffic and drawing dark stares and gestures from cars speeding by? In cases like this, do you only have two dramatic possibilities, or do you have other options?

As the owner of any type of car, one of the most important phrases you can learn is prevention. To avoid tight, high-pressure circumstances in which you can’t accelerate your car, you must first learn how to care for the vehicle you’re driving.

Diesel vehicles aren’t difficult, but they’re also not simple. Are you familiar with the term “catalytic converter”? Is the term “transmission” one you’ve heard before? Isn’t there a “butterfly valve”? It’s understandable if you don’t know everything there is to know about your car’s operating parts.

A number of factors can contribute to a diesel truck’s inability to accelerate. It could be the result of a clogged catalytic converter or a gasoline filter that needs to be replaced. However, if your diesel isn’t overheating, it’s likely that your transmission has failed. If this is the case, Sturtevant Auto’s salvage yard can help you locate a replacement transmission (or transmission parts) quickly and affordably—you may not even need to purchase a new vehicle!

Can diesel injectors cause loss of power?

You will experience a loss of power if your injector is not working properly. Engine codes are not always thrown by injector problems. In my career, I’ve seen engines with one or more defective injectors that never turn on the check engine light.

If you hear a miss in the engine, take a closer look to see if that’s who’s robbing you of your power. An injector performance test or diagnostic test will be included in most diagnostic software. To isolate the problem, you should run the test on all injectors. Don’t give up if you come across one that isn’t up to par. Make sure you finish the test to ensure you don’t have more than one failing injector.

It’s fairly uncommon to have multiple bad injectors. If you experience problems, I would recommend replacing all 6 depending on the age and maintenance history of the car or equipment. You can also send those out for testing and even rebuilding.

Why does my truck have no power?

When you press your foot down on the accelerator and don’t get the response you expect, it could indicate a fuel system problem. A clogged fuel filter is the most likely cause. The fuel filter’s job is to keep dirt and debris out of the fuel system, therefore it may need to be cleaned or replaced over time. The fuel pump has to work much harder when the fuel filter is blocked, resulting in a far less efficient driving. This implies you won’t be able to accelerate when overtaking or traveling uphill because you won’t have enough power.

While the most common and easiest to remedy problem with the fuel system is a clogged fuel filter, a lack of power could also indicate a problem with the fuel line or the fuel pump.

Why does my car lose power when turning?

Hello. Thank you for your letter. Always keep it simple when dealing with circumstances like this. Given that the steering is the only contributing component, the pump is most likely faulty. To aid with steering, the power steering pump uses engine power given by the drive belts. If the pump is putting additional strain on the system, your engine will be forced to take on the additional load. This is why the engine seems like it’s losing power when you’re turning. It’s because you’re one of them. The first thing you should do is check the power steering fluid level to ensure that the extra stress isn’t due to a shortage of fluid. You can check the pressure of the power steering fluid whether it is full. If it tests low during a turn, the pump must be replaced. Continue your investigation, however your problem is most likely related to the power steering system.

How do you restore engine power?

Cars have a tendency to lose power over time. Every year, 1 BHP is estimated to be produced. This, however, may vary based on the car’s usage and the number of kilometers driven. Aside from wear and tear, a variety of things influence the engine’s performance.

A full service can usually solve this problem, but if your car’s performance continues to slow despite the service, there are a few things you should look into.

Internal Combustion Engines (ICEs) generate power in four stages: sucking, squeezing, banging, and blowing.

Squeeze– In diesel engines, compress the air fuel between 14:1 and 26:1, and in petrol engines, between 8:1 and 12:1.

While the ICE is in operation, a lot of heat and carbon deposits are produced. The burnt fuel residue is removed during the exhaust stroke. This process, however, leaves behind muck since it uses lubricants other than gasoline that burns. Regular pollutants, such as coolant, carbon, water, and other chemicals, combine to generate gunk, which hardens into sludge and destroys the engine.

An engine flush is the most convenient technique to remove carbon deposits and dirt. Chemical engine sludge removers can help with this. It’s mixed in with the old oil, then the engine is allowed to idle for 5-10 minutes without being driven. Later, the old oil is drained and replaced with new oil, as well as the oil filter.

Another option is to add additives to the fuel as you fill it up. These additions are controversial, yet they are the simplest technique to remove carbon deposits. Oxygenates, ethers, antioxidants, antiknock agents, fuel dyes, metal deactivators, corrosion inhibitors, and unclassified substances are among the additions.

The main goal of this flush is to remove the muck that has accumulated over time and is affecting the engine’s performance.

The air filter is critical to the engine’s performance. You will notice a significant boost in performance right away. A clean air filter helps the gasoline burn cleaner and greener, resulting in better mileage and a more responsive engine.

Make sure the air filter isn’t clogged and that the engine gets enough air. Cleaning them is pointless because new ones are inexpensive and installation takes less than 5 minutes. Use only OEM air filters.

Cleaning the throttle body is one of the most common car maintenance tasks. Symptoms include stumbling beginning acceleration, harsh idle, and stalling. Another cause of poor engine performance is a vacuum leak. When too much air enters the intake, a vacuum leak occurs. The throttle body may be serviced and maintained on a regular basis to keep the car running without the need for costly repairs.

Any engine’s lifeblood is oil.

Changing the oil and oil filter on a regular basis can guarantee that the car performs at its best. Oil aids in the cooling of the engine, seals gaps between piston rings and cylinder walls, absorbs impurities, and suspends combustion waste. The filter removes contaminants from the oil that would otherwise wear out the pumps and cause engine harm. Changing these components on a regular basis will maintain the engine running smoothly and increase performance. This is why your automobile is quiet when you change the oil and filter.

The ability of an engine to ignite the fuel will be maximized by replacing the spark plugs and fuel injectors. Make sure to use high-quality spark plugs and fuel injectors when replacing them. However, while this is the most expensive method of recovering your car’s power, it is also the most basic and necessary maintenance. Cheap spark plugs will not provide a strong enough spark to ignite the fuel.

Piston rings are critical to the engine’s ability to generate power. It aids in the combustion chamber and crankcase sealing. Blow-by is the most common cause of engine power loss. Blow-by occurs as the piston rings wear down over time, allowing the air-fuel mixture and exhaust gas to escape into the crankcase. A leak in the compression chamber caused by worn piston rings creates a vicious loop that slows the engine down by drawing in less air-fuel combination, resulting in poor compression, inefficient combustion, and incomplete exhaust. Engine oil contamination occurs sooner than it should, which is a symptom of worn piston rings.

Replace the clutch if you feel your car’s performance hasn’t improved or could be better. The clutch is responsible for transferring power from the engine to the wheels, and a sliding clutch can result in power loss. The fuel pump is also important in ensuring that the engine has enough fuel to run efficiently. Check it out and replace it only if necessary.

There are more expensive ways to restore and improve your car’s performance with aftermarket parts, but they aren’t as successful and cost much more than these easy solutions. Cars are designed to last longer than the manufacturers claim, but they must be properly maintained.

Rather than shelling out a bomb on a new automobile, you might save a lot of money by just returning the lost horses to your current one. Stop buying a new automobile every few years, as not all manufacturers are eager to create cars that are as durable as their predecessors these days. These fantastic machines can be kept going indefinitely with a small modification, regular maintenance, and appropriate care. Have fun on the road!

Can a blocked exhaust cause loss of power?

Yes. Excessive exhaust backpressure can be caused by a blocked muffler, as previously stated. When the exhaust valves open, the backpressure causes exhaust gases to be pushed back up into the engine, essentially choking the engine.

A lack of power is the most prevalent symptom of severe backpressure. The engine may stall or refuse to start if the exhaust restriction is severe enough. It’s also possible that the vehicle will run rough and the check engine light will illuminate.

How do I check if my fuel filter is clogged?

Engine repairs can be pricey, and they might keep your car in the shop for a long time. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if you could do something simple and inexpensive to help safeguard your engine and keep it running smoothly? Wait! Yes, there is! Extra care should be used with the fuel filter.


  • You’re having trouble starting your car. If the problem is with the fuel filter, and it is not replaced promptly, your car may not start at all.
  • Misfire or a sluggish idle A clogged fuel filter may hinder the engine from receiving sufficient fuel.
  • The vehicle has stalled. Nobody likes to come to a complete halt in traffic! However, if you’re driving with a filter that’s beyond its prime, that’s exactly what could happen.
  • A component of the fuel system has failed. When trying to push fuel through a filthy fuel filter, electric fuel pumps can fail prematurely.
  • The gasoline pump is making a lot of noise. Sudden, odd noises may be your vehicle’s method of alerting you to a problem.


The gasoline system is monitored by sensors in many automobiles. When the Malfunction Indicator Lamp (MIL) or Check Engine Light illuminates, it indicates that a problem has been detected by the sensors.

These major issues could be solved with a simple, low-cost solution: changing the filter. Fuel filter maintenance should be done on a regular basis and in a timely manner to ensure consistent drivability. A clean filter lowers pollutants and protects your engine and fuel system from damage.


The filter should be changed every two years or 30,000 miles (whichever comes first), however this is a general recommendation. You may want to change your fuel filter more frequently if you drive a lot on unpaved roads or through highway construction, which can kick up a lot of dust and debris. The suggested interval for your specific vehicle should be found in your vehicle’s owner’s manual.

Don’t skip a planned maintenance check, but if you notice any of the five faulty fuel filter symptoms above, don’t hesitate to have a professional look at your car between appointments. When you visit one of Jiffy Lube’s 2,000 sites across North America, a qualified Jiffy Lube technician will:

  • Inquire about your driving style to see if it has an impact on your vehicle’s fuel system.
  • Replace the old gasoline filter with a new one that complies with or exceeds the manufacturer’s specifications.


The fuel filter isn’t the only one that works hard to keep your vehicle running smoothly. When you come to Jiffy Lube, the technician will visually verify the following items:

  • Air filter for the engine. The engine air filter, like the fuel filter, assists to trap debris in the fuel and protects the engine from airborne toxins.
  • Filter for transmission. The filter in your automatic transmission prevents dirt and debris from entering the hydraulic system.
  • Air filter for the cabin. The cabin air filter helps remove dust, pollen, and mold from the cabin, allowing you and your passengers to breathe easier.

If a replacement of any type is recommended, the Jiffy Lube expert will inform you, but no work will be done without your permission.


Preventive maintenance performed by a professional will help keep your car running as it should. Jiffy Lube specialists have undergone extensive training and only use high-quality materials. This is beneficial to you since it means your car, truck, minivan, or SUV will be ready to go and keep going when you need it most. It’s also excellent for your wallet, because little changes, such as changing your fuel filter, won’t escalate into costly repairs if spotted early.

Why did my car lose power while driving and wont start?

There are a number of reasons why a car will crank but not start. A failing sensor, a clogged fuel filter, defective injectors, a damaged ecu, a failed ignition coil, or a bad fuel pump It will be important to determine whether the problem is due to a lack of spark, low/no fuel pressure, or a mechanical issue.

Why is my car shaking and losing power?

When your car shakes, it can be alarming and unnerving. The following are some of the more prevalent causes of shaking in the steering wheel or brake pedal:

Excessive braking (riding the brakes) or rapid braking at speeds exceeding 40mph can cause brake rotors to become deformed. This is referred to as warping “When you apply the brakes, your steering wheel may shake or tremble because it is “out of round.”

Sticking Brake Caliper – Has effects comparable to “When one of the brake calipers sticks on a “out of round” rotor, shaking may ensue.

Unbalanced Tires — When driving at speeds between 45 and 60 mph, unbalanced tires or uneven tire wear might cause shaking in the steering wheel.

Because the shaking or tremor may dissipate at greater or slower speeds, this one might be problematic. However, after you’ve identified the issue, you should have it assessed and treated as soon as feasible.

Shaft Assembly for CV Axle – A faulty or malfunctioning CV axle shaft can cause your car to shake while braking, in addition to making a clicking noise while turning.

Front vs. Back Brakes — When a problem with your front brakes causes steering wheel shaking or vibration, the shaking will be more noticeable when braking. If the problem is with the back brakes, the shaking will be more noticeable in the brake pedal.

Car Engine Vibration and Power Loss

Engine vibrations can be felt throughout the car and can cause power loss, signaling that you should see your mechanic right away. While there are a plethora of reasons why your engine could vibrate and lose power, the following are some of the more prevalent causes (the check engine light could be activated by any of these):

Spark Plugs – When a spark plug dies, your engine takes on a completely different personality. Spark plugs burn in a specific order in combustion engines to maintain engine pressure and create power to push the vehicle.

The internal pressure of the engine lowers when a spark plug quits firing, resulting in power loss, and the remaining cylinders are left to compensate (causes vibration and possible violent shaking).

Imagine an automobile with three round tires and one square tire to give you an idea of how to compare the stress on the motor under these conditions.

Spark Plug Wires – Also known as ignition coils or ignition wires, your spark plug wires are in charge of transmitting electrical current to the spark plug so that it can fire in the proper order.

When one of these wires breaks, the symptoms are almost – if not exactly – the same as when a spark plug breaks.

If your car has an RPM gauge, you can detect a deteriorating spark plug wire before it fails completely. You may detect a minor bounce or repeated dip in the RPM needle when stopped at a red light or stop sign. The engine’s typical sound may be muffled slightly as a result of this bounce. This is a common symptom of an electrical current problem with a plug or wire.

Air or vacuum hoses – When air or vacuum hoses become loose, leak, or rupture, they can cause engine vibration and power loss.

All combustion engines require three things: air, fuel, and a spark. Your engine will struggle, lose power, and vibrate if any of the three are given out of proportion.

Incorrect Octane in Gasoline – It may sound contradictory, but higher octane gasoline burns slower than lower octane gasoline.

If you use a higher octane fuel in an engine designed for 87 octane, your engine’s failure to properly burn the fuel may result in reduced power, increased fuel consumption, and possible engine shaking.

Engine Sludge – Engine oil can degrade over time, leaving deposits throughout your engine. These deposits build up over time, forming a thick, difficult-to-remove muck that can cause power outages, shaking, and costly repairs.

Similarly, if your engine’s oil level drops too low, it won’t be properly lubricated, and it will lose power, overheat, and eventually fail.

Having your oil changed at the recommended intervals for your vehicle’s make and model can help you prevent this issue. Read Why and When Should I Change My Oil for more information.

Car Shaking When Stopped or Idling

Damaged or broken motor mounts or transmission mounts are most likely to blame if your car shakes while idling at a complete stop.

Motor or gearbox mounts that are broken can cause severe motor shaking and should be repaired before creating additional serious mechanical issues.

Why Does My Car Shake?

It’s time to fix a car that shakes a lot. Be aware of your surroundings, whether it’s the steering wheel, brake pedal, or engine, because the problem could be simple or complex.

Failure to have your automobile maintained or repaired after noticing vibrations and shaking can lead to further mechanical failure, motor seizing, and costly repairs that could have been avoided with a simple visit to your mechanic.