Identifying Pick up Coil Symptoms – How to Spot the Signs of an Issue

A pick up coil is an electrical component used in the ignition system of a vehicle to detect the position of the crankshaft and generate a signal that is used to trigger the spark plugs. If the pick up coil is malfunctioning, it can cause a variety of problems with the vehicle’s performance. Common symptoms of pick up coil failure include engine misfire, difficult starting, poor acceleration, and poor fuel economy. In some cases, a failed pick up coil can also result in an illuminated check engine light. If you suspect that your vehicle has a failing pick up coil, it is recommended to have it diagnosed and replaced as soon as possible in order to prevent further damage or performance issues.

Automobile: Pick Up Coil Symptoms

Common Signs of a Faulty Pick Up Coil

When it comes to diagnosing pick up coil symptoms, one of the most common signs of a faulty pick up coil is misfiring. This can be tough to detect because it could be caused by many other things as well. Other common signs of a faulty pick up coil include: poor acceleration, rough idling, stalling, and engine light turning on. All these symptoms could indicate that the pick up coil needs to be replaced.

Troubleshooting a Pick Up Coil

The first step in troubleshooting a pick up coil is to check for any loose connections or corrosion that may be causing the issue. If everything looks good, then you should move on to testing the resistance in the coil. You will need an ohmmeter or multi-meter for this task. Make sure that you are disconnecting the battery before proceeding with any electrical tests.

Using an Ohmmeter to Test a Pick Up Coil

Using an ohmmeter to test a pick up coil is fairly simple if you know how to use one properly. First, you will need to turn off the engine and disconnect the battery before making any electrical tests. Once everything is disconnected, set your meter to measure resistance and attach each of its leads across the two terminals on your pick up coil. The reading should be between 200 and 900 ohms depending on which type of vehicle you have – consult your owner’s manual for more information about this range value for your specific vehicle make and model. If the resistance does not fall within this range then it may indicate that there is something wrong with your pickup coils and they need replacing.

Checking the Resistance in Pick Up Coils

In addition to using an ohmmeter to test resistance in pick up coils, you can also check them visually by looking at each wire of the two connectors attached to the primary and secondary windings of your pickup coils individually with a flashlight or magnifying glass. It’s important not only to ensure that there are no loose connections but also that all wires are connected securely without any fraying or breaks in them which could lead to poor performance from your ignition system components including your spark plugs and starter motor as well as potentially causing damage to other parts due to arcing over time.

Diagnosing The Problem

Once you have tested all components related to your pick up coils such as wiring harnesses, ignition control modules, spark plugs and distributor cap (if applicable), then it’s time for diagnosing what might be causing the issue at hand in order to fix it properly without just replacing parts blindly hoping they will solve it eventually. The most common issues found when diagnosing problems related with ignition systems come down either mechanical failure or electrical failure so depending on which one it may be will determine what needs replacing or repairing after further testing has been done such as checking voltage drops across relays or switches using an amp meter etc… Once all necessary tests have been done then you can start considering whether replacing parts such as pickups coils would be necessary at this point or not based on results obtained from these tests in order for proper functioning from these components again.

What is a Pick Up Coil?

The pick up coil in an automobile is a component that detects the speed at which the crankshaft is spinning. It works by creating an electromagnetic pulse every time the teeth on its rotor pass by the sensor. This pulse is then used to determine the current speed of the engine. This information is then relayed to other components, such as the ignition and fuel systems, so they can adjust their settings accordingly.

What are the Symptoms of a Bad Pick Up Coil?

When a pick up coil begins to fail, it can cause several different symptoms that may indicate a problem with the engine. These include rough idle, hesitation when accelerating, stalling, backfiring and misfires. In some cases, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all until the engine fails to start or run properly. If any of these symptoms are present, it’s important to have it checked out right away.

How Do You Test for a Bad Pick Up Coil?

In order to test for a bad pick up coil, you will need an ohmmeter or multimeter and some basic automotive knowledge. First, make sure that all of your battery connections are secure and free from corrosion. Then you can check for continuity through each wire connected to the pick up coil by measuring its resistance with an ohmmeter or multimeter. Additionally, you can also perform a spark test at each plug wire to make sure that sufficient spark is being generated.

What Causes the Pick Up Coil to Go Bad?

A common cause of pick up coil failure is age and wear and tear on the coil itself. Intense heat or electrical shortages could also lead to its demise over time. Contamination from oil or dirt can also cause problems with this part as well as improper installation or maintenance practices such as over-tightening bolts or using incorrect wiring harnesses.

How Do You Replace a Pick Up Coil?

Replacing a pick up coil may seem like an intimidating task but with some basic automotive knowledge it can be done fairly easily in most cases. The first step is to locate and remove any existing wiring harnesses connected to the old pickup coil in order to safely remove it from its mounting location without damaging any other components nearby. Then you’ll need to install your new pickup coil according to manufacturer’s instructions before reconnecting any wiring harnesses you removed earlier in the process and testing for proper operation of your vehicle before driving again.

FAQ & Answers

Q: What are the common signs of a faulty pick up coil?
A: The common signs of a faulty pick up coil include difficulty starting the engine, misfiring, and decreased engine performance.

Q: How do you test a pick up coil?
A: You can test a pick up coil by using an ohmmeter to measure the resistance in the coil, or by testing for spark at the plug wires.

Q: What causes the pick up coil to go bad?
A: The pick up coil can go bad due to age and wear and tear on the coil, intense heat or electrical shortages, contamination from oil or dirt, or other factors.

Q: How do you diagnose a problem with your pick up coil?
A: You can diagnose a problem with your pick up coil by troubleshooting it and testing it for resistance or spark. If necessary, you can also take your car to an auto mechanic for further investigation.

Q: How do you replace your pick up coil?
A: To replace your pick up coil, start by disconnecting the negative battery cable and removing the distributor cap. Then unplug the electrical connectors from both sides of the pickup coil and remove its mounting bolts. Install your new pickup coils in place and reconnect all electrical connectors before replacing the distributor cap and connecting back your negative battery cable.

In conclusion, pick up coil symptoms can be a warning sign of serious issues in an automobile. If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, it is important to take your car to a qualified mechanic for diagnosis and repair. Ignoring these symptoms can lead to other problems, like engine stalling and complete engine failure. Therefore, pay attention to pick up coil symptoms and address them as soon as possible.

Author Profile

Carl Frisch
Carl Frisch
With more than 30 years in the bicycle industry, I have a strong background in bicycle retailing, sales, marketing and customer service. I have a passion for cycling and a dedication to excellence. As a manager, I worked diligently to increase my capabilities and responsibilities, managing up to eleven mechanics (at Palo Alto Bicycles) and later as a working partner in my own store.

As the shop owner of Spoke n’ Word Cycles in Socorro, NM, the success of the mission was my responsibility, which I pursued passionately since we opened in 2003 through the spring of 2011. I am adept at managing owned and loan inventory, preparing weekly & annual inventory statements, and managing staff. The role as managing partner also allowed me tremendous freedom. I used this personal freedom to become more deeply involved in my own advancement as a mechanic, to spearhead local trail building, and advocating for cycling both locally and regionally.

As a mechanic, I have several years doing neutral support, experience as a team mechanic, and experience supporting local rides, races, club events. I consistently strive to ensure that bicycles function flawlessly by foreseeing issues and working with the riders, soigners, coaches and other mechanics. Even with decades of experience as a shop mechanic and team mechanic, and continue to pursue greater involvement in this sport as a US Pro Mechanic, and UCI Pro Mechanic.

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