Is your car sputtering when you turn on the heater? When your engine sputters, you usually know right away. There may be a backfire, or it may simply not sound and feel like it is working normally.
It is unnerving to hear a sputtering engine and a clear indication that there is a problem. However, fixing the problem as soon as possible is the best course of action.
The heater system in your car puts an additional load on the engine whenever it is running when it is functioning properly. The car’s computer compensates for this extra load on the engine.
During idle or low speeds, your engine’s intake system contains an idle air control valve, which controls the amount of air mixed with fuel.
It may cause the fuel mixture to be adjusted incorrectly when it is dirty or not working properly. Also, if your car sputters occasionally, the heater or AC is running, and you may have a problem with the alternator.
This causes the voltage required to operate the Engine Control Module to be insufficient, causing the engine to miss. All battery cables should be checked at both ends, and if all checks are satisfactory, the alternator should be loaded. I hope this helps.
8 Possible Reasons Why Car Sputters When Heater Is On
There may be a number of reasons why you are having this problem. First, because car heaters are smaller than traditional heaters, they tend to break more frequently.
Learn how to fix engine sputtering and the importance of resolving the issue as soon as possible by following along with us.
1. Catalytic Converter Failure
There is also a possibility that the engine is sputtering due to a faulty catalytic converter. By reducing the amount of pollution coming from your car, the catalytic converter helps reduce air pollution.
Components of your vehicle’s exhaust system convert harmful compounds into less harmful ones like water and carbon dioxide by converting carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxide, and hydrocarbons.
2. Distributor And Ignition Problems
Check the rotor and cover on an old car you bought from a dealer. As the lid deteriorates, carbon deposits build up on the center and outer ends, leading to its eventual ignition.
A spark plug tip that generates intense sparks is prevented by this method. Finally, make sure the manifold cover and terminals are thoroughly inspected for carbon traces and cracks.
Through carbon traces, the voltage will be sent to the ground. You may need intense light to see the carbon traces on the black dispenser cover. Be sure to check the lid carefully.
3. Mass Airflow Sensor That Is Dirty
It is also possible that a dirty mass airflow sensor is responsible for the sputtering engine. As part of the fuel injection process, this sensor measures the temperature and weight of the air entering the engine.
The clogging of a sensor can cause various problems, including reduced gas mileage and poor engine performance.
4. Cooling And Condenser Fan Problems
High pressure can build up when a cooling fan or condenser malfunctions and idle speed can become unstable. You should ensure that the cooling or condenser fan normally works if its speed is variable.
Furthermore, basic tests can be used to run a quick circuit check if necessary. There are also some fundamental problems you can troubleshoot with cooling fans.
5. Spark Plugs That Are Worn Out
You may also need new spark plugs if you notice your vehicle is sputtering. Spark plugs are among the most critical components of any engine.
You’ll feel the power surge through your vehicle when the spark plugs “spark” the mixture of air and fuel in the engine. Eventually, you cannot even start your vehicle if they are dirty or not functioning properly.
6. The Throttle Body Is Dirty
Having a dirty throttle body may result in your car idling unstable. This is because the throttle body controls the engine air intake. The engine will not normally run if it gets dirty.
The idle speed of an AC system can be affected by a dirty throttle body. The computer keeps the throttle plate closed while idling by regulating the airflow through the throttle plate.
On the other hand, dirty throttle plates and orifices will result in insufficient airflow when the air conditioner is turned on. The performance of a vehicle and the way it drives can be improved when the throttle body is cleaned.
The remedy is designed for those suffering from unreliable engine operation, hazardous vehicle operation, or low performance. The new car, however, is still relatively new. As a result, the unburned gasoline and hot exhaust gasses will rise to the top of the engine when the engine is shut off.
7. Fuel System Problem
Sputtering engines are most commonly caused by problems with the fuel system, including the filter, pump, and injectors.
For fuel to flow smoothly from your fuel tank to the fuel injectors and pump evenly into your engine, these three components work together.
Your vehicle’s engine generates power from the combustion of fuel and air created by this process.
Dirt and debris can clog one part and cause the others to fail because the fuel filter, pump, and injectors work together as one interconnected system. As a result, the engine may perform poorly or fail completely.
8. The IAC Valve Is Faulty
Idle air control (IAC) is managed by the PCM (power system control module). In essence, the IAC blows air out of the throttle plate in a certain amount.
An engine’s air-fuel mixture is improved when additional air is added during a cold start. When the air conditioning or defrost system is turned on, it also helps increase engine speed.
Most IAC engine problems involve carbon deposits around IAC valves, throttle passages, and failures of IAC engines. IAC engines can be tested for carbon deposits in the throttle bypass port and IAC valve with a basic IAC engine test.
Finally, Try Adjusting The Idle Speed
It may be necessary to adjust your idle speed if you still haven’t been able to pinpoint the cause of the problem. On old vehicles equipped with carburetors, the idle speed can be changed.
Almost every carburetor performs this procedure regularly. First, check the idle speed solenoid valve and adjust the idle speed screw, depending on your model. Following the vehicle maintenance manual’s instructions is the next step.
Modern automobiles’ powertrain control modules (PCMs) adjust idle speed depending on airflow, throttle position, and temperature. It may be possible to adjust some versions manually.
Your owner’s manual or engine compartment decals will provide information. The PCM sets the idle speed based on sensors.
TPS, MAF, and ECT sensors are examples of throttle position sensors. During idle speeds before turning on your air conditioner, peripheral sensors or actuators may not cause problems. The check engine light may also not illuminate.
The Bottom Line
If you notice that your engine is sputtering, it’s important to fix the problem as soon as possible to avoid expensive, long-term damage.
Several factors can cause a sputtering engine, but these are some of the most common ones. You should take your engine to a professional mechanic as soon as possible if it is struggling and not performing as it should.