Ignition Systems – Watch Out For Sparky !

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Lately we have had quite a few customers come in the shop with ignition problems.  Symptoms range from loss of power and/or a sluggish state to engine misfire (skip), a “crank no start” and decreased fuel economy.  While many things can lead to these problems, the ignition system is possibly the culprit. 

We all know that water and electricity do not play well together.  The same holds true for your vehicle’s electronics.  Moisture from rain, heavy morning dew or even foggy conditions can wreak havoc on vehicle components, and after all of the rain we have experienced this summer, it can take its toll on your car.

Vehicles can have multiple coils (one for each spark plug) or a single direct ignition coil.   For gas vehicles, ignition coils send electrical pulses to your spark plugs via spark plug wires and ignite the fuel for combustion, ultimately make the vehicle fire up.  If a coil pack has a crack, moisture intrusion can short the unit and problems arise.  Some vehicles have individual coils that sit on top of the spark plugs.  The wires are sealed to prevent water and debris from entering the spark plug area but sometimes these seals may crack, again leading to an electrical short and causing ignition issues. 

We strongly recommend using OEM coils should you ever have to replace an ignition coil.  Using a less expensive part can cause additional damage to your ignition system and/or cause the new coil to fail.  The additional money spent on quality OEM parts for your Volkswagen or Audi will be well worth it and lessen the likelihood that you will be stranded on the side of the road.