Auto Loan Guide Vehicle Check Engine Light Car Shaking When Accelerating

Check Engine Light Car Shaking When Accelerating


Check Engine Light Car Shaking When Accelerating: Causes, Solutions, and FAQs


The Check Engine Light (CEL) is an important warning indicator on your car’s dashboard that alerts you to potential issues with your vehicle’s engine. When the Check Engine Light comes on and your car starts shaking while accelerating, it can be a cause for concern. In this article, we will explore the various causes of this problem, possible solutions, and answer some frequently asked questions to help you better understand and address the issue.


1. Misfiring Engine: One of the most common causes of a shaking car when accelerating is an engine misfire. This occurs when one or more cylinders in your engine fail to ignite the fuel-air mixture correctly. A misfiring engine can be caused by faulty spark plugs, ignition coils, fuel injectors, or a problem with the engine’s sensors.

2. Fuel System Issues: A clogged fuel filter or a failing fuel pump can result in an inadequate fuel supply to the engine, leading to a rough running engine and shaking during acceleration. Additionally, a malfunctioning fuel pressure regulator or a vacuum leak can disrupt the fuel-air mixture ratio, causing the engine to shake.

3. Engine Mounts: The engine mounts are rubber cushioning components that hold the engine in place and absorb vibrations. If one or more of the engine mounts are worn out or damaged, it can lead to excessive engine movement, resulting in a shaking sensation during acceleration.

4. Transmission Problems: A faulty transmission can also cause the car to shake when accelerating. Issues with the transmission fluid, torque converter, or worn-out transmission components can disrupt the smooth power delivery to the wheels, causing shaking or vibrations.

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1. Diagnose the Problem: The first step in resolving the issue is to use an OBD-II scanner to retrieve the trouble codes stored in your car’s computer. These codes will give you a starting point for identifying the specific problem causing the Check Engine Light and the shaking. If you are not familiar with diagnosing car problems, it is recommended to seek the assistance of a qualified mechanic.

2. Address Ignition System Issues: If the problem is related to the ignition system, it may be necessary to replace faulty spark plugs, ignition coils, or other components. Regular maintenance of the ignition system can help prevent misfires and associated shaking.

3. Check and Clean the Fuel System: Inspect and replace a clogged fuel filter if necessary. If you suspect a fuel pump issue, have it tested by a professional. Additionally, ensure there are no vacuum leaks and that the fuel pressure regulator is functioning correctly.

4. Replace Worn Engine Mounts: If the engine mounts are worn or damaged, they should be replaced to eliminate excessive engine movement. This repair will not only address the shaking problem but also prevent potential damage to other components.

5. Transmission Maintenance: Regular transmission fluid changes and inspections can help prevent transmission-related issues. If the problem persists, consult a qualified transmission specialist for a thorough diagnosis and repair.


Q: Can I continue driving with the Check Engine Light on and the car shaking?
A: It is not advisable to ignore the Check Engine Light or drive a car that shakes during acceleration. Continuing to drive under these conditions may cause further damage to the engine or other components, resulting in costly repairs.

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Q: How much will it cost to fix a shaking car with the Check Engine Light on?
A: The cost of repairs will vary depending on the specific problem causing the shaking. Simple fixes such as replacing spark plugs or ignition coils may be relatively inexpensive, while more complex issues like transmission problems can be more costly. It is best to consult a mechanic for an accurate estimate.

Q: Can a faulty oxygen sensor cause a shaking car?
A: Yes, a faulty oxygen sensor can affect the air-fuel mixture, leading to engine misfires and shaking during acceleration. If your Check Engine Light is on, it is worth considering the oxygen sensor as a possible cause.

Q: Is it safe to drive my car to the mechanic when the Check Engine Light is on and the car shakes?
A: It is generally safe to drive your car to the mechanic if the shaking is not severe and you can maintain control of the vehicle. However, it is recommended to have the issue addressed as soon as possible to avoid further damage.


Experiencing a shaking car when accelerating with the Check Engine Light on can be worrisome. By understanding the potential causes and solutions outlined in this article, you can make informed decisions to address the issue promptly. Remember, regular vehicle maintenance and timely repairs can help prevent such problems and ensure your car’s optimal performance and safety.

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