Symptoms of Defective or Malfunctioning Ignition Coil

Nov. 27, 2020

Ignition CoilThe ignition coil is an electronic engine management component, which is a part of the vehicle ignition system. The ignition coil functions as an induction coil, converting the vehicle’s 12 volts into several thousand volts required to jump the spark plug gap and ignite the engine’s air-fuel mixture. Some ignition systems will use one coil to provide the spark for all cylinders, but most newer designs use separate coils for each cylinder.

Since the ignition coil is the component responsible for generating engine sparks, any problems can quickly lead to engine performance problems. Usually, a malfunctioning ignition coil will produce some symptoms to warn the driver of potential problems.

1. Engine misfire, severe idling, and power loss

One of the most common symptoms associated with driving with a bad ignition coil is engine performance problems. Since the ignition coil is one of the most important components of the ignition system, problems can cause spark damage, which can quickly lead to performance problems. The wrong coil may cause the car to catch fire, severe idling, loss of power and acceleration, and reduced fuel mileage. In some cases, performance issues may even cause the vehicle to stall.

2. Check whether the engine light is on

Another symptom of a potential problem with the ignition coil of the vehicle is that the Check Engine Light lights up. A faulty coil can cause engine performance problems, especially a fire, which will trip the computer and turn off the Check Engine light. If the computer detects a problem with the ignition coil signal or circuits, such as a burned coil or short circuit, the Check Engine indicator will also go out.

3. The car does not start

Symptoms of bad ignition coil may also cause failure to start. For vehicles that use a single ignition coil as the spark source for all cylinders, the malfunctioning coil will affect the operation of the entire engine. If the coil fails completely, it will keep the engine in a non-sparking state, which will result in a non-sparking, no-start state.

Ignition coil problems are usually easy to detect because they produce symptoms that are very easy for the driver to detect. If you suspect that there is a problem with the ignition coil of the vehicle, please have a professional technician inspect the vehicle to determine if any coils need to be replaced.