How Do You Know If You Have a Burnt Valve in Your Car?


Quick Answer

A burnt engine valve causes a car to lose power, misfire, backfire or idle roughly. Fuel consumption can go up, and the exhaust system may develop a "putt-putt" sound. These symptoms get progressively worse until the valve is repaired or the engine suffers major damage.

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Full Answer

Burnt valves can be caused by excessive localized heat, irregular valve sealing, faulty valves or incorrect valve clearances. Hot combustion gases leaking out in a concentrated area damage a valve, eating away the metal. Mechanics make a preliminary diagnosis of burnt valves by listening to the engine or by the pressure at the tailpipe. A compression test can confirm a leaking or burnt valve.

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