My Car “Stutters” Sometimes Going Up A Steep Incline. What Causes This?

If you notice something like this happening, normally your Check Engine light would turn on and you would know to bring your ride into us to have a look.

This is what we call a “miss.” A miss is an engine misfire. It’s most likely to be noticed when the engine is under load, like when you’re climbing a hill. It’s often electrical in nature and usually easy to fix, once you can find and identify the cause.

As I said, normally a miss would turn on your Check Engine light and store a fault code in the computer. We would then to check that code, which would tell us what part has malfunctioned.

But if a problem is intermittent and of short duration, your vehicle’s computer might consider it a “phantom” event, and not store a code or turn on the check engine light.

In that case, it may store the information as a “pending code.” That’s information about something that went wrong, but it hasn’t happened regularly enough to become a pattern yet. So ask your mechanic to check for pending codes.

Misfires are most often caused by bad spark plugs, bad plug wires or bad ignition coils. Those all are part of what we call the secondary ignition system. Fortunately we fix these issues all the time and they won’t break your bank!

If you live in Essex, Burlington, South Burlington, Colchester, Winooski, Williston, Shelburne and anywhere in the State of Vermont be sure to contact Handy’s Service Center for all your auto repair needs!