6 Causes Of Car Won’t Accelerate Symptoms

The symptoms of a car not accelerating can be occur on many high mileage vehicles. A driver might not notice them in the usual driving but they become abundantly clear during the circumstances like driving up a hill or during the quick acceleration in a fast moving traffic. It is in those situations that the drivers will come to notice the obvious slow acceleration and the fact that the engine of their vehicle is struggling to keep up.

Read also: Symptoms of a Faulty Speed Sensor in Your Vehicle

Some common causes of car won’t properly accelerate

This problem is common in vehicles with high mileage but there is no any serious or immediate concerns regarding the engine because there are some of the causes which should be checked first in order to locate this problem and possibly fix it as well. And below are some common causes:

1. Air flow meter clogged or malfunction

Air flow meter located and attached on the inlet air cleaner. And the function of air flow meter is to measure air mass that flowing into inlet air cleaner then sending the data to engine ECU to calculate the air fuel mixture. And some of the symptoms of Airflow meter malfunction is car wont accelerate.

2. Oxygen Sensor Malfunction

An Oxygen Sensor, is device whose function is to monitor the exhaust emissions of the vehicle so that it can analyze the air-fuel ratio going through the engine of that vehicle. To make the long story short, a car needs a proper amount of fuel in order for the fuel to burn properly in the combustion cylinders so that it may run smoothly and may accelerate as required. This sensor sends the information about the amount of fuel being used to the computer unit of the engine and if this sensor get damaged, then the engine of that vehicle will have no idea what ratio of air-fuel mixture to intake which may result in a fuel rich mixture. This can cause the slow acceleration of the vehicle even with the fuel pedal completely pressed making it unreliable when it’s needed.

3. Malfunction of TPS

Basic principle of throttle position sensor is to detect the throttle valve opening angle which controlled by accelerator pedal. Then the tps will send this data to the ECU. If the tps malfunction, the engine speed cannot control by accelerator pedal, engine speed will increase or decrease without any press or depress the pedal.

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17 thoughts on “6 Causes Of Car Won’t Accelerate Symptoms

  1. I have a 98 ford ranger that occasionally looses power & won’t accelerate. Can happen anytime on freeway or surface streets. It only last a few seconds then it’s ok again. No smells, no warning lights, nothing to indicate a problem. Mechanics can’t find any problem. Replaced battery then fuel filter then idle control motor. Still same problem but only for seconds & can go 200 to 1000 miles before it happens again. Can’t keep fix in stuff it isn’t. Any suggestions?

    1. it so complicated, so the problem comes sometimes and take only for a second?
      i mean when problem occur, it continuous or just a second then comeback normal again?

    1. Possible causes and easiest step you can do:
      check clogged exhaust pipe
      check fuel pump weak
      and please also chcek the compression of each cylinder

  2. i have a 99 honda crv. the timing belt jumped which affected the four valves out the sixteen valve, my mechanic worked on the engine by replacing the valves and the gasket but since after the work the car acceleration is not normal again. it is so slow especially at idle speed.when you accelerate it somehow sluggish to pick. what could be the likely problem

  3. I have a 2005 Toyota Camry drives normal for a while then just stops, motor is still running but when you push on the gas pedal it does nothing. I can shut the car off and restart it and I will drive fine again for a while.

  4. I have a similar problem, my car is Honda EOD 2003 V6. It won’t accelerate at all or even pick up eventually. Its just dragging and sucking my fuel like no man’s business. Please i need urgent help.

    1. check engine light, if no engine light possible causes
      fuel pump weak
      clogged exhaust pipe
      or even loss compression
      please check the easiest way first

  5. I have a 97 Acura 3.0 CL, it’s making clicking noises on the passenger side by the dashboard. It starts, will drive, but at a certain distance it won’t let me accelerate when I press the gas. I can turn it off and wait a few and it would start back up and drive again. What might that be?


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