11 Main Problems after Fuel Injection Cleaning (Solved Now!)

Problems after Fuel Injection Cleaning

Do you know what problems you can expect after fuel injection cleaning? Well, you are at the perfect place to find the answer to such a question.

You would think that a fuel injection cleaning would fix issues with your vehicle and, for the most part, it does. However, there are a variety of cases where giving your fuel injection a good clean can cause some issues.

The list below shows the issues people often face after a fuel injection cleaning which include:

1.         Your Vehicle Loses Power

2.         The Engine Misfires

3.         Serious Fumes From Your Exhaust

4.         Poor Fuel Economy

5.         Check if Engine Light Comes On

6.         Rough Idle

7.         Vibrating Engine

8.         Damaged Vehicle Sensors

9.         Smell From The Vehicle

10.       Leaking Fuel Pump

11.       Your Vehicle Isn’t Starting

Remember, it is far less likely that you will suffer from fuel injection cleaning issues if you hire a professional to carry out the work for you. It is a fairly cheap job for a proper mechanic to do.

1.    Your Vehicle Loses Power

If your vehicle is losing power after you have cleaned your fuel injection, then this indicates that there is a blockage somewhere in the system.

Perhaps the first thing to do here is to check that you have used the right fuel injection cleaning solution.

Not all solutions are the same, and some may not even work on your engine (to be honest, you probably should have checked this part first!)

If you can, then you may want to put a slightly heavier cleaning solution through your system. However, because it is going to be almost impossible to tell where the clogging is happening in your vehicle, your best hope here is to talk to a mechanic. They will be able to get rid of the clogging with ease. 

Read also >> Will A Clogged Catalytic Converter Cause Loss Of Power (Bad Catalytic, Harm Engine)

Read also >> 6 Symptoms Of A Clogged Catalytic Converter (Signs Nobody Is Talking About)

2.    The Engine Misfires

If your engine misfires, then it is likely down to the fact that the fuel injector is pumping a little bit too much air into the engine.

Thankfully, this is an issue that should eventually rectify itself. It is likely that your vehicle’s engine will only misfire a couple of times, and then the problem is dealt with.

The extra air in the fuel injector will likely come from when you clean the fuel injector. If you follow the instructions for the fuel injector cleaner, then the risk of this happening should be fairly minimal. 

If the issue continues, then it is likely that you have damaged the throttle body during the cleaning. If this has happened, then you are going to need to replace the throttle body.

Read also >> Can a Clogged Catalytic Converter Cause Rough Idle? (Misfire, Hard Shifting, Overheating, )

3.    Serious Fumes From Your Exhaust

If you notice fumes coming from your exhaust, then there is a pretty good chance that you have damaged a sensor while cleaning your fuel injector.

What a lot of people fail to realize is that a fuel injector cleaner is not always going to be sensor safe.

A lot of them are going to be quite powerful and, if you use them incorrectly, then you could end up damaging a multitude of sensors around the engine and the fuel injector.

The only thing that you can do here is to head to a mechanic. While you will likely be able to replace a sensor yourself, it is probably best to get an expert looking at your vehicle.

After all, if you have damaged a sensor, there is no telling what else you may have damaged around the area, so it is always wise to have everything looked at properly.

4.    Poor Fuel Economy

If you have noticed that your vehicle is burning through a lot more gas than normal, then chances are that you have damaged something with your fuel injection cleaner.

Although, there are a couple of reasons why you may have a poor fuel economy.

One of the more common issues is that there are still a few blockages in your vehicle’s fuel injector. You can always try and track down where the blockage is or use a slightly more powerful fuel injector cleaning solution.

However, do make sure that whatever chemical you use has been rated for your system.

In other cases, you may have damaged some sensors around the fuel injector i.e. the sensors that control how much fuel is being shot into that engine at once.

Obviously, if the sensors have been damaged, your vehicle may end up burning off a lot more fuel than it should be burning off.

5.    Check if Engine Light Comes On

Yes. This is a pretty generic issue, and it is one that you probably won’t be able to fix yourself unless you have something that will read the error codes in your vehicle, and, even then, it could be a problem.

Obviously, in order to clean your fuel injection, you are going to be working pretty close to your engine. This means that you may cause a few issues around there.

When the check engine light for your vehicle comes on, it is pretty much your vehicle saying “hello, something isn’t right here”.

It will store an error code on your vehicle’s computer, but you will need a specific device to read that.

If the check engine light comes on, then you may want to check that you have sealed up everything properly (i.e. replaced the various valves).

but, if everything looks sealed up, it is probably going to be a trip to the mechanic for you.

Read also >> Can You Read Codes Without Check Engine Light On? (Full Guide)

6.    Rough Idle

A rough idle could indicate that you have damaged the engine with the cleaner, or perhaps the fuel pump isn’t working as efficiently as it should be.

Since there are several reasons why you could be dealing with a rough idle, your best hope here is to head to your local garage. 

7.    Vibrating Engine

If you have a vibrating engine, then the solution is pretty much the same as a rough idle. This means that you are going to need to head to a mechanic so that they can diagnose the issue for you.

If you have serious engine vibrations, then you will likely notice that the check engine light for your vehicle comes on.

When this happens, it means that your vehicle will have recorded an error code, and a skilled mechanic is going to be able to tell you exactly what the issue is and, hopefully, they are going to be able to fix it for you.

8.    Damaged Vehicle Sensors

As we have mentioned several times already, there is always the risk of damaged sensors in your vehicle.

If the various sensors end up getting damaged, then you will probably need to head to a mechanic.

They are pretty tough to replace yourself. However, once again, the vehicle will keep an error log of any issues related to the sensors, which means that you should be able to deal with most issues fairly easily. 

9.    Smell From The Vehicle

If there is a heavy burning smell for a short while after you have carried out the fuel injection cleaning, then this is likely not going to be an issue.

It is just the vehicle burning off some of the sediment that may be trapped in the area.

If you have noticed a gas smell, though, then this indicates that gas may not be burning off properly inside the vehicle.

There are several reasons why this may be the case. However, the most common reason is that there is a blockage in the fuel injector, or somewhere else in the system.

If this happens, the gas may not be getting to the engine and could be leaking.

10. Leaking Fuel Pump

A fuel pump that is leaking indicates that you have damaged it during the cleaning process. This isn’t uncommon. It happens when you use a cleaner that is not rated for your vehicle.

It, essentially, eats away at the inside of the fuel pump and fuel injector. This creates small holes that allow fuel to leak out.

Of course, the only way to deal with this problem is to replace the fuel pump or the fuel injector, whatever is causing your leaking woes.

11. Your Vehicle Isn’t Starting 

If your vehicle isn’t starting, then it is likely that you have used the wrong cleaner. For example, if you use a diesel cleaner in a vehicle that runs on gas, you can seriously mess everything up.

Of course, the only way to deal with this particular problem is to head to the garage. This is because you could have damaged a multitude of different components. 

Fuel Injection cleaning in less than 5 Minutes/HOW TO clean injection Directly without disassembling >> Check out the video below:


It is always advised that you have any fuel injection cleaning carried out by a professional. This is because there are a ton of things that could go wrong during the cleaning process.

This means damage to your engine, fuel pump, or fuel injector.

If you notice issues with your fuel economy, for example, then you may need to unclog the fuel injector a little bit more.

If you have an engine that is now misfiring, then you may have damaged the throttle body. If the vehicle is not starting, then you may have completely damaged the fuel pump.

While some issues can be rectified yourself, we do recommend that you always get to a mechanic to have them sorted. If you don’t, then you may not be able to identify all issues. 




Jeff is an automotive technician, technical writer, and Managing Editor. He has held a lifelong passion for cars, with a particular interest in cars like the Buick Reatta. Jeff has been creating written and video content about transportation, automotive, electric cars, future vehicles as well as new, used for more than 18 years. Jeff is based in Boulder, Colorado.

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