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11 Reasons Why is My Car Jerking When I Give it Gas

11 Reasons Why is My Car Jerking When I Give it Gas

A car’s usefulness extends well beyond its primary function of going from point A to B. Many car owners do not realize how much their car has grown to mean to them on a daily basis. If your car isn’t functioning properly, you are not the only one who is facing this issue.

Cars often experience jerking when they are put into acceleration. The issue is not limited to airplanes or trains, but may also occur on boats. Everyone agrees it’s risky, but nobody knows why.

 The most prevalent causes of why is my car jerking when I give it gas and how to fix them are discussed below.

1. Fuel Injectors

Whenever there is a problem with a component that regulates the flow of gasoline to the engine, the vehicle will jerk. Since fuel injectors supply the engine directly with fuel, any loss of efficiency due to carbon deposits would be felt. When these components wear down, you may also have engine misfires or stuttering. However, if you get them professionally cleaned on a regular basis, you won’t have to worry about this happening.

2. Fuel Filter/Pump

It’s possible that a blocked fuel pump is to blame for the sluggish or jerky acceleration. If the issue persists after pump maintenance or replacement, you should examine the fuel filter, since the quality of the air entering the engine is also crucial to its ability to accelerate smoothly. One of the most basic and inexpensive maintenance jobs is changing the filters.

3. Spark Plugs

The fuel cylinders’ ignition is facilitated by these little components. Nothing in the engine will function properly if they wear out or become dirty. Once again, a simple solution like cleaning or changing the spark plugs can restore your car’s peak performance.

4.  Catalytic Converter

This component is crucial since it helps cut down on exhaust system pollution. Too much gasoline in the air intake may cause the exhaust to back up, which in turn can cause the vehicle to jerk when you step on the throttle. Bad smells and worse gas mileage are further signs of a faulty catalytic converter.

5. Air Filter

If you want to keep hazardous particles out of the engine, then you need to maintain the filters clean. It’s a good idea to check the air filter whenever you change the oil to head off any potential blockages. If this crucial part is overlooked, pollutants may enter the engine and cause damage, lowering the vehicle’s performance.

6. Airflow Sensor

In today’s vehicles, the computer system is more sophisticated, and it employs sensors to monitor and regulate all of the moving components. Failure of other engine parts may be attributed to a faulty mass airflow sensor that isn’t relaying accurate data to the vehicle’s onboard computer. Thankfully, the check engine light will come on if this component is failing.

7. Damaged Acceleration Cables

Jerking during acceleration and reduced engine responsiveness are also symptoms of a damaged acceleration cable. Having trouble getting your automobile started after sitting idle for a while is a common occurrence known as a cold start.

Inevitably, the cables in your car will wear out and need to be replaced; the owner’s handbook can tell you where everything is and how to get to it if you need to do any repairs.

Instead of attempting a DIY remedy, you should consult a professional car technician who is versed in these and other complex areas of engine maintenance.

Cabling difficulties might be difficult to troubleshoot if you don’t have experience dealing with HVAC systems since you’ll often need to connect wires between the engine and the body of your vehicle.

8. Malfunctioning Transmission Control Module

Jerking may also occur during gear changes if the transmission control module is faulty. Check the control module if you experience a jerk while shifting gears in your vehicle.

The transmission control module regulates shifting during acceleration, therefore any lags in shifting might result in jerky acceleration.

Even while this is not the most prevalent cause of a jerking automobile, it is still a possibility.

9. Moisture on the Distributor Cap

Moisture building up on the distributor cap might cause jerky acceleration if it’s snowing outside. If you leave your vehicle outdoors during the winter, this is a common problem. Avoid this by leaving your vehicle somewhere with a higher temperature.

10. Defective Carburetors

The carburetor regulates the proportion of gasoline to air before it reaches the engine. Car performance suffers across the board when the carburetor is faulty, but it is more noticeable during acceleration.

11. Damaged Gas Lines

Using gas lines, fuel is distributed to all engine parts. However, if there’s a leak in your gas line, your automobile might lose pressure and jerk. A broken gasoline line may create serious problems, including a possible engine fire. Making sure there are no leaks in the gasoline line should be your top priority.

Car Jerks When You Accelerate at Different Speeds

You can see from the list of possible problems that might occur during acceleration that there are many different causes. By keeping track of at what speed the jerking occurs, you can eliminate some potential culprits.

The “why is my car jerking when I give it gas” issue might be due to a number of various problems. This means that the issue that causes your automobile to jerk at low speeds may not be the same as the one that causes it to jerk at high speeds.

Car Jerks When You Accelerate at a Lower Speed

There are several potential reasons for an automobile to jerk at moderate speeds. However, it’s often traced to defective spark plugs, which may be easily replaced. A simple replacement or tune-up should fix the problem fast and cheaply.

Remember that if you’re driving an older automobile, it might also be due to issues with the air intake, catalytic converter, fuel injectors, or carburetor. When spark plug replacement or maintenance fails to correct the problem, it’s time to move on to the next suspect component.

Car Jerks When You Accelerate at High Speeds

When an automobile experiences jerking under heavy acceleration, airflow problems are usually at blame. At higher speeds, your vehicle’s engine requires a larger volume of air for combustion. If there’s a problem with the car’s intake system, it won’t be able to provide the engine with enough air to function properly.

Because of this, the combustion process will be thrown off, and your engine won’t function correctly. The result is a jerky acceleration and misfires as the engine attempts to get up to speed. If this occurs, you should have the air intake system and mass air flow sensor inspected, and maybe replaced. However, there may be more issues at play here.

In any event, if you’re having this problem, you should have your automobile checked right away. When accelerating at high speed, a jerky automobile may be risky to drive since it might cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle.

Car Jerks When You Accelerate at Constant Speed

Whether you’re starting off from a complete stop or maintaining a consistent pace, if your automobile jerks when you apply the gas, it’s because it isn’t receiving enough gasoline.

This happens when the fuel system is unable to provide a constant stream of gasoline to your engine, as might happen if your fuel injectors are filthy or if there is a problem with your fuel pump. Pulling out of a parking spot or other somewhat routine driving situations will be difficult if your automobile has this problem, adding to your stress levels.

Car Jerks When You Accelerate in First Gear

\What should you do if you feel vibrations in the steering wheel or floorboard while you accelerate, especially in first gear?

The failure of the transmission control module (TCM) is the most typical cause of this problem in automatic transmissions. When the TCM, the main computer responsible for determining the optimal shift time, fails, the transmission may shift slowly (i.e. with a delayed reaction) or provide harsh and rough gear changes.

Though, if you’re a stick shift driver, the fundamental problem might be something else entirely. If the problem disappears when you go to second gear, then it’s probably due to a worn-out clutch. One such possible cause is a malfunctioning pressure plate. Another possible cause is oil getting onto the clutch because of a leaky rear main seal.

Can I Drive A Car That Jerks When Accelerating?

You can, but it’s not recommended. You could still be able to drive the automobile with minimal disruptions, depending on the nature of the problem. The issue should be identified and fixed as soon as possible.

We’ve already warned you that this issue might make it difficult to maintain safe vehicle control. The check engine light will likely come on for most of the causes, so you should have your vehicle fixed regardless.


The good news is that if you keep up with your car’s regular servicing and maintenance, you may easily prevent this.

Parts that often malfunction and cause misfires are typically repaired or replaced during inspections. Therefore, the “why is my car jerking when I give it gas” issue may be avoided with regular servicing.

However, serious issues like gearbox and catalytic converter problems are more likely to produce jerking under acceleration. We recommend that you take care of these problems immediately, since they are rather critical, and not only because the components are getting close to the end of their useful life.

 Inquire as to whether or not any underlying issues contributing to the early failure of the components before proceeding with the repairs. If you don’t repair it, it’ll keep wearing down other parts of your automobile.

It’s important to keep up with your car’s maintenance and fix any issues as they arise. An automobile that operates without any hiccups is not only more pleasant to ride in, but also more secure for the driver.

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