Mass Airflow Sensor: What It Is & Signs of Failure

Modern vehicles have an array of electronic components that complement the basic functions of the combustion engine. These electronic items improve fuel efficiency, reduce emissions, and help your vehicle to run faster and better.

Of course, that means there are more things that can go wrong and you need to be aware of the most common issues and how you know it has gone wrong. The mass airflow sensor is one of these things. It pays to learn more here about a local expert that can help you when you do have an issue.

What Is A Mass Airflow Sensor?

The mass airflow sensor does exactly what its name suggests, it monitors the flow of air coming into the engine. This is a crucial function as the amount of air must be balanced with the amount of fuel being injected to allow the engine to run smoothly and efficiently.

The sensor reads the volume of air and tells the central computer in the vehicle which then controls the amount of fuel being injected.

Unfortunately, the mass airflow sensor is constantly dealing with dirty air. That means it becomes clogged inside and the sensor fails.

There are several signs that your mass airflow sensor is failing:

The Engine Check Light

This can come on for a variety of reasons and tells you that your car needs to be looked at. One of these reasons is an issue with the mass airflow sensor. If the light comes o you need to have the vehicle checked by a qualified mechanic to identify what’s wrong.

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Power Disruption

Because the MAS helps control the amount of fuel injected a bad sensor can cause too little to too much fuel to go into the system. This can cause the vehicle to hesitate or even have a sudden jolt of power. There will be no warning when this will happen making it potentially dangerous.

Running Rough

With an incorrect fuel mixture, your engine will no longer idle or even run smoothly. Because the engine is running lean or rich, it won’t have a steady throb and you’ll notice it sounds different, potentially even like a bag of bolts gas been poured into the engine.

Black Smoke

If you see black smoke coming out of your exhaust there is a good chance the MAS is faulty. Black smoke indicates the mixture is too rich and not all the fuel is getting burned when it should. There are other reasons for black smoke but the Mas is definitely a consideration.

Poor Starting

When the mass Airflow sensor starts to play up you will notice that the car becomes difficult to start. It simply isn’t getting the right mixture of fuel and air and the engine is cold, making it more difficult anyway.

Bad Fuel Economy

Finally, you may notice that your car is going through a lot more fuel than normal. This can be due to the mass airflow sensor being damaged.

If you notice any of the above issues it’s time to get your car checked over.

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