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My car is running rich how do i adjust the fuel to air ratio?

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You don't. All modern vehicles are computer controlled with an OBD1 (1995 and older) or OBD 2 (1996 and newer) computer. If the fuel to air ratio is off it will set a code

Posted on Oct 17, 2010

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What does running rich mean? And is it expensive to fix?


Running rich is a term to describe the fuel to air ratio as being to " rich" with fuel and simply means you need more air.
Usually done by adjusting the carb.

Jan 02, 2016 | Cars & Trucks

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1995 f-350 runs rich and won't idle?


If this is a gas engine, check for air leaks on the intake manifold and every vacuum line and switch you see. Use a pump spray water bottle and with the engine running, spray around seams and such.

A change in rpm or stalling will indicate the leak.

What is probably happening is the air leak is making the system run rich to balance the air/fuel ratio. This would make more fuel dump into the engine where it is not needed.

Another possibility is a loss of the signal from an O2 sensor. The O2 sensor sends a signal to the ECM to set the fuel demands and let the engine controls know that the fuel ratio is rich-normal-lean to adjust to optimum running condition.

Now if this is a Diesel, the hard to start condition would be due to an inoperative glowplug timer or worn glowplugs. If this is the mechanically injected model, the injector pump is timed to get the fuel into the cylinder either earlier or later to change the fuel ratio. Your diesel injector pump would need to be retimed. It will help across the board.

Please rate my info and let me know how you solved this.

Mar 03, 2013 | 1995 Ford F350

1 Answer

My honda ballade is consuming a lot of fuel and it has a black smoke what might be the cause


The coolant temperature sensor adjust the air to fuel ratio depeneding on the temperature of your engine. If it is bad it will run your engine too rich(to much gas, not enough air) and it will run rought at idle and definatly have black smoke, good-day! its worth a try ! In some cases you can unplug the sensor and the PCM will compensate by running a default air/fuel ratio and in some cases allowing the car to run without the sensor, I'd just replace it.

Mar 22, 2012 | Cars & Trucks

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How do I know if the engine is running rich or running lean?


A 2002 (any car) should not be doing any of those things unless the check engine light is on. If that's the case then scan or have the car scanned for codes. If there are codes than they will give an indication as to what components to check. Otherwise the mixture of air/fuel is constantly monitored by the PCM (Power-train Control Module), which through data feedback from various sensors (such as Oxygen, Mass Air, Intake Air temp., Coolant Temp, etc . . .) constantly adjusts for the optimum air to fuel ratio by varying the injector pulse. Therefore no adjustment is necessary as this is all taken care of via a computer. Hope this helps

Sep 13, 2011 | 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer

1 Answer

Just bought a 95 z 28 its all ready had k&n cold air intake, phantom air to fuel ratio, and vacuum gauges and a port to plug a lap top into so i was told, the air to fuel ratio gauge is showin its...


Cheap air/fuel gauges simply tap off the stock oxygen sensor. That sensor can only tell you lean or rich and the car should idle roughly at 14.7:1 and go rich under acceleration. Cruise down the highway at steady 50 mph and see what the gauge does. Should be calmer.
At idle the needle can bounce around quite a bit. Means nothing. It should however go sometimes rich and sometimes lean. That's how the computer adjusts, if it stays lean too long, the computer tweaks the injectors richer. If it stays rich too long, the computer tweaks it leaner. If the computer cannot adjust the ratio, it will set the check engine light and in that case it should be a flashing check engine (meaning stop the car and tow it to a shop - flash means the catalytic converter can burn out).
If you want to know the actual air-fuel ration you need to buy a wide/band oxygen sensor and related gauge. They are much more expensive and will typically run a few hundred dollars. If the car is stock except for K&N, don't bother with the air/fuel gauge.
As for computer hookup. Go read up about "LT1Edit". Don't buy the software (too expensive for a stock car) but you'll understand what software is out there to monitor your engine (and what hardware you need to buy in order for your laptop to talk to your car).

Apr 16, 2011 | 1995 Chevrolet Camaro

1 Answer

Carb runnin rich on 88 nova w 1.6 L does carb have adjustment screws for air fuel mix or is it a solenoid only thing left to fix to pass smog


Your car should have fuel injection not a carburetor. The air/fuel ratio is controlled by the onboard computer. If it is running rich, I would suspect an O2 sensor, perhaps a dirty air filter, needs new spark plugs, or even a new catalytic converter. You need to have the computer scanned for trouble codes. The codes will give us a place to start looking for the cause of the rich mixture.

Dec 29, 2010 | 1988 Chevrolet Nova

1 Answer

I have a nissan primera with an sr18di engine. it has a very hi idle rmp. how do i fix this?


you need to adjust the air fuel ratio. Every car has a tiny screw that can adjust it. It should be around where the intake meets the throttle body.Be careful doing the adjustments though. You don't want your car running rich, but you also don't want the car running lean. It would be best to have a professional do it so you don't kill the engine.

Sep 23, 2010 | Nissan Pulsar Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

86 Gli starts and runs rough for three minutes with black smoke if kept above 1200-1500 then slowly dies out and won't restart for 30 minutes. Seems to run extremly rich. Changed fuel pump relay with no...


If your light for o2 sensor has been on than the culprit is you need to replace the sensor. The o2 sensor tells the computer to adjust the air fuel mixture, if you have a bad one it will make your car run too rich because the ECM is guessing what the air fuel ratio should be, hence the reason you have all that black smoke. Change the sensor and your car will run like new and save you alot of gas.

May 25, 2010 | 1986 Volkswagen Jetta

1 Answer

Bad gas mileage 2009 mitsubihi lancer


There are 2 things to affect the gas millage: 1- Air filter is dirty. 2- O2 sensor is bad. I give a feedback to ECM to adjust fuel injection to maintain the Air: fuel ratio of 14.6 :1. It is now running rich because ECm didn't know the ration is now < 14.6:1 since O2 sensor didn't report this situation so ECm didn't adjust fuel injection to meet the golden ratio. Check these out and replace them to address the problem. Good luck.

Nov 15, 2009 | 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS CVT Sedan

1 Answer

Replacement of o2 sensor


Every new car, and most cars produced after 1980, have an oxygen sensor. The sensor is part of the emissions control system and feeds data to the engine management computer. The goal of the sensor is to help the engine run as efficiently as possible and also to produce as few emissions as possible.
A gasoline engine burns gasoline in the presence of oxygen (see How Car Engines Work for complete details). It turns out that there is a particular ratio of air and gasoline that is "perfect," and that ratio is 14.7:1 (different fuels have different perfect ratios -- the ratio depends on the amount of hydrogen and carbon found in a given amount of fuel). If there is less air than this perfect ratio, then there will be fuel left over after combustion. This is called a rich mixture. Rich mixtures are bad because the unburned fuel creates pollution. If there is more air than this perfect ratio, then there is excess oxygen. This is called a lean mixture. A lean mixture tends to produce more nitrogen-oxide pollutants, and, in some cases, it can cause poor performance and even engine damage.
The oxygen sensor is positioned in the exhaust pipe and can detect rich and lean mixtures. The mechanism in most sensors involves a chemical reaction that generates a voltage (see the patents below for details). The engine's computer looks at the voltage to determine if the mixture is rich or lean, and adjusts the amount of fuel entering the engine accordingly.
The reason why the engine needs the oxygen sensor is because the amount of oxygen that the engine can pull in depends on all sorts of things, such as the altitude, the temperature of the air, the temperature of the engine, the barometric pressure, the load on the engine, etc.
When the oxygen sensor fails, the computer can no longer sense the air/fuel ratio, so it ends up guessing. Your car performs poorly and uses more fuel than it needs to.
More to come soon! presently looking for detail instruction on how to repair or replace.
I found this link with info on the sensor .... might be helpful

Oct 06, 2009 | 2003 Lexus ES 300

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