How to Fix Engine Power Reduced | The Definitive Guide

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David Lawrence

This article is going to be taking a deep dive into reduced engine power? Engine power is reduced over time. What to do? And before we get to that, what does reduced engine power mean? How to reset reduced engine power light?

Read through the end to answer all these questions and acquire all the necessary information to answer the question: How to fix reduced engine power?

Let us find out!

How to Fix Engine Power Reduced

As an increasing number of individuals take to the road, the automobile has become an indispensable asset in daily life. It’s imperative to recognize the importance of maintaining one’s vehicle. After all, our lives depend on the reliability of the cars we drive. Any indications of distress within your vehicle should be viewed as a clarion call for prompt mechanical intervention, particularly concerning the engine.

One of the most common issues vehicles face nowadays is reduced engine power. What does reduced engine power mean?

Let’s delve deeper into the heart of this prevalent issue.

What does reduced engine power mean?

Diving into the nitty-gritty, let’s first focus on your car’s dashboard, the gateway to its inner workings. Should you spot a ‘reduced engine power’ message displayed on the dashboard, take heed that your vehicle is no longer operating at peak performance.

This implies that a particular element has hindered fuel and air delivery to the engine, depriving it of the necessary power for optimal functionality. Consequently, the engine’s performance takes a hit, diminishing its overall capabilities.

Now, how to reset reduced engine power lights? To answer that question, we must first understand why engine power is reduced. It can be so because of various reasons. 

In the event that your vehicle’s turbocharger or supercharger falters, an accumulation of carbon deposits may obstruct the engine’s exhaust system. Additionally, if fuel injectors cease to perform optimally, components like the oxygen sensor and spark plugs might follow suit, gradually causing further engine deterioration.

Be aware that such issues can also surface when driving with an overheated engine for extended periods. Upon noticing an error message on your dashboard, remember that your engine’s power is now diminished, and prolonged driving should be avoided until a proper examination is conducted.

A telltale sign of reduced engine power is the noticeable decline in acceleration experienced by the driver. If you’re not well-versed in engine mechanics, it’s wise to promptly seek the expertise of a professional to assess your engine’s condition.

How to fix engine power reduced: Possible Causes

How to fix reduced engine power? The first step is to understand ‘What does reduced engine power mean,’ which we did in detail in the above section.

If your engine power is reduced, these can be the reasons behind it. The intensity of each of these options varies and needs a different solution. 

  • Low Engine Oil
  • Worn out and defective spark plugs
  • Faulty Distributor
  • Connectors
  • Faulty Mass Airflow Sensor
  • Loose Fuel Cap
  • Car TAC System
  • Oxygen Sensors

Low Engine Oil

Look into your engine oil levels. There is a chance that your car needs more oil and maintenance. This is serious and can be extremely dangerous. It is easy to fill your engine oil; if you do not know it, get a local mechanic to do it.

Worn Out and Defective Spark Plugs

How to reset the reduced engine power light? The culprit may be a faulty spark plug. A car’s engine has multiple spark plugs. Worn-out, faulty, or burnt spark plugs can lead to the engine power light of your dashboard start blinking.

Faulty Distributor

A distributor is an essential part of the engine. It is an enclosed switch that is a part of the spark-ignition internal combustion engine. What does it do?

The primary function is to route high voltage current from the ignition coil and then successfully transfer it to the spark plugs in the proper firing order for the required amount of time.

If you have a faulty distributor, there is a high chance that your engine power will be reduced. 


Unsurprisingly, a vehicle’s engine relies on many coil wires, or connectors, to function efficiently. Ensuring these plugs are securely fastened is vital. If you’re seeking a solution to reduced engine power, examine the connectors within your engine.

A loose coil wire might trigger the engine power light to flash on your dashboard. To reset such reduced engine power indicators, thoroughly inspect both wire ends for any kinks that could cause short-circuiting, then tighten them accordingly.

Faulty Mass Airflow Sensor

A possible culprit behind diminished engine power could be your vehicle’s faulty mass airflow sensor, which may trigger a warning light on the dashboard. Your automobile relies on its MAF sensor to gauge the air entering the engine, relaying that intel to the ECU or Electronic Control Unit.

The ECU then takes charge of fine-tuning the air-fuel balance, ensuring your car performs at its peak and cruises effortlessly.

Loose Fuel Cap

You were wondering how to reset reduced engine power lights? A loose fuel cap is a common reason for the illuminated engine light on your dashboard. To fix it, tighten your gas tank’s fuel cap. You can do it yourself or get it done by any mechanic. 

If your engine power is reduced and the reason for it is a bad or loosely closed gas cap, it can lead to more damage. 

Car TAC System

What does the TAC system stand for? It stands for Throttle Actuator Control System and is a vital part of many modern cars. It controls the fuel timing and injection. This can be caused due to a bad or malfunctioning electronic fan clutch. 

  The best way to get around it is by replacing the bad TAC system.

Oxygen Sensors

Cars work on burning fuel which makes oxygen sensors a significant part of the engine. It controls the amount of oxygen in the exhaust, which further regulates the fuel injected into the engine.

If your engine power is reduced, it can be due to a malfunctioning oxygen sensor. If you are facing this problem, you should install a new oxygen sensor as soon as possible to ensure minimum damage. 

Engine Power is Reduced: Bypass reduced engine power

Following is a list of options you can choose if you want to bypass reduced engine power. Remember the various points discussed while the ‘what does reduced engine power mean?’ portion of it. 

Catalytic Converter

Embarking on a quest to identify the offender, consider investigating your catalytic converter first. Should a problem arise, the OBD monitor senses it and compensates by dialing back the engine’s power in response to the perceived issue. Overcoming the reduced engine power may be as straightforward as swapping out your old catalytic converter for a new one.

Air Filter

If your engine power is reduced, your car is expected to inhale a massive amount of oxygen which the engine can burn as fuel. In the case of oil built on the valves or the seals, oxygen intake can be reduced, further reducing the engine’s power. How to fix reduced engine power caused by poor air filters?

You can brush them out on your own. Ensure to use the right products and wear gloves throughout the process. If you are not confident handling the engine yourself, get a local mechanic on it; it does not cost much.

Exhaust Leaks

You should look for the reason for your car’s distress. If your engine power is reduced, look at your exhaust pimples to ensure you are not experiencing exhaust leaks.

As a car operates, it generates immense pressure that may disrupt the exhaust system’s functionality, engineered to manage and mitigate extra pressure.

Compromises in the system, such as holes caused by rust or damage, can exacerbate the situation.

These breaches release excessive pressure, consequently diminishing power output. Employing the soap and water technique can readily reveal any leaks, with bubbles pinpointing the trouble spots.

If you uncover any defects, seeking professional assistance without delay is crucial.

How to fix reduced engine power at home?

If your engine power is reduced, Is it possible to fix it at home? In all honesty, it can be. Once you’ve identified the issue, there’s a decent likelihood that you can address the problem within your own domain.

A plethora of comprehensive online videos can offer guidance if you’re unsure. However, it’s vital to bear in mind that tinkering with the engine without sufficient confidence or knowledge can potentially exacerbate the damage and inflate expenses.

Alternatively, you can enlist the help of a local mechanic to assess the situation. The associated costs will hinge on the nature of the problem and whether a replacement is necessary.

Expenses are influenced by the availability of required parts and labor fees, which can differ significantly based on the customer’s location. It’s crucial to prioritize your vehicle’s well-being, regardless of the costs involved.

If your car exhibits any trouble, don’t hesitate to have it examined promptly.


Can I drive my car if it says engine power is reduced?

Whether you should drive a car with reduced power depends on the root cause. Generally, the issues are minimal and wouldn’t cause any significant problem in driving, so they continued. However, in rare cases, reduced power can cause issues like electrical fire or a seized engine. The reduced power light often indicates the severity of the problem and will light when the battery or other electrical part will top functional or will not function as it should.

Mostly the root cause of the problem is corrosion or moisture damage.

Can a dirty throttle body cause reduced engine power?

A faulty or dirty throttle body is a common cause of reduced engine power. Problems with the fuel pump and MAF and transmission failure are the root causes. A defective throttle body will decrease the air that can be reached in the combustion chamber and consequently reduce the engine power.

Why is my car saying engine power is reduced and service traction control?

That’s the job of traction control. If there is an issue with the car, traction control detects it and shifts it into low power mode for safety.

Why does my car have zero power when accelerating?

There is no power in your car while accelerating due to defective spark plugs, fuel pump, fuel filter, sensor issues, or some issues with the exhaust.


We have discussed ‘How to fix engine power reduced’ and ‘How to fix reduced engine power?’ in detail here. It is crucial to remember that precaution is better than cure, making knowing about your car necessary. You do not need to be crazy about cars to get a basic idea about the running of your car. Basic knowledge about your car’s essential parts prepares you for emergencies. 

You can understand your vehicle better by taking it one step at a time.

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David Lawrence

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