Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Should you get fuel induction service?

Should you say yes to fuel induction service?

What is fuel induction service?

Modern engines can develop carbon buildup

air induction service

Carbon buildup in an electronic throttle body

deposits in the throttle body and the backside of the intake valves. This carbon buildup can cause a rough idle, poor gas mileage, and poor acceleration problems. To remove the carbon buildup, dealers and shops are promoting routing fuel induction service on just about every visit. However, car makers don’t recommend this service unless you are experiencing an engine operational issue.

In a fuel induction service, the technician removes the electronic throttle body and manually cleans carbon buildup from the throttle body throat and throttle plate using a throttle body cleaner and rag. Throttle body cleaner should never be spray directly onto the electronic throttle body as the liquid can seep into the electronics and damage them.

After re-installing the cleaned electronic throttle

dirty valves

Buildup on the back face of an intake valve

body, the technician performs an upper engine intake valve cleaning procedure. The technician injects a spray cleaning solution into the air intake while the engine is running. After inject a specified amount of cleaner, the technician lets the engine sit for at least an hour (called a “hot soak”) to allow the cleaner to penetrate the carbon buildup. Then the car should be driven at highway speeds to further clean the valves.

Finally, the technician may perform a fuel injector cleaning service to remove carbon deposits from the port or gasoline direct injectors.

Should you agree to fuel induction service?

Say yes to fuel induction service IF your vehicle is experiencing a performance issue AND that performance issue has been diagnosed as a carbon buildup problem on the throttle body throat, intake valves or fuel injectors.

Do NOT agree to have a fuel induction service performed as a “preventative” measure. If your engine is starting quickly, idling smoothly and you have good acceleration and gas mileage, you do NOT need a fuel induction service—it’s a waste of money.

Why shops promote fuel induction service?

A fuel induction service takes about 20-mins of shop time and the cleaning products cost less than $10. Yet shops charge around $150 to $199 for this service. As you can see, this is a great revenue generating service. If the shop promotes the service as preventative maintenance, they can increase daily revenue by a substantial amount. Don’t Fall for this scam. If your engine has the performance issues listed above, fine; get the service. But don’t get suckered into paying for a service your car doesn’t need.

©, 2018 Rick Muscoplat

Posted on by Rick Muscoplat

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