How To Fix Car Shakes After Ignition Coil Replacement: A Step-By-Step Guide

You’ve just replaced the ignition coils on your car and are eagerly anticipating a smoother ride. But as you turn the key and start the engine, you feel the car shake after changing the ignition coil that sends ripples through your steering wheel.

If your car is shaking after an ignition coil replacement, it could be due to several reasons such as improper installation, damaged spark plugs or wires, or incorrect ignition timing. It’s important to ensure proper installation and torque specifications, check for any damage to the spark plugs or wires, and verify correct ignition timing.

This is a common issue that many car owners face after replacing ignition coils, and it can be frustrating to deal with. 

What could be causing this issue? Don’t fret because you’re not alone. Many car owners experience this problem after replacing ignition coils, and it’s often due to a misfire in the engine. So buckle up and get ready to learn how to solve this problem once and for all!

Possible Reasons for Car Shaking After Ignition Coil Replacement

Possible Reasons for Car Shaking After Ignition Coil Replacement

When you change your ignition coil and when you start your car, you feel the car shake after changing the ignition coil.

This prevalent issue can be caused by a variety of factors, such as carbon buildup on the spark plugs, problems with the ignition system, or issues with the spark plug gap and firing order.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to fix car shakes after an ignition coil replacement:

Check for any loose connections

It’s possible that the engine is misfiring because the electrical connections were not fitted correctly when the new ignition coil was installed. Make sure that all of the ignition system’s electrical connections are safe and tight. The spark electrodes, ignition coil, and other associated parts must all be connected.

Carbon Deposits on Spark Plugs

You expect a smooth ride when you replace your car’s ignition coil. However, if your car starts shaking violently after the replacement, there could be several possible reasons behind it. One common issue is the presence of carbon deposits on the spark plugs. 

During engine operation, if the spark plug doesn’t reach the self-cleaning temperature, carbon deposits can build up on the insulator, causing power leakage. This leakage can cause the ignition voltage to run away through the vehicle body to the ground instead of breaking through the ignition gap to normal ignition.

Carbon deposits spark plugs with the wrong heat value

Another reason for carbon deposits is the installation of spark plugs with the wrong heat value. If you use the wrong spark plug heat value, it can cause carbon buildup on the insulator, leading to engine shaking. 

Incorrectly Sized Spark Plug Gap and Firing Order

If all the wires and other components are installed correctly, the spark plug gap could be out of spec. The electrode could be bent during shipping or installation, or the gap could be made with a different size than what your engine needs. 

An incorrectly sized gap could prevent a reliable spark, leading to engine shaking. Finally, it’s possible that the spark plugs have not been connected in the right firing order, the leads aren’t connected to the spark plug terminals properly, or one or more of the new spark plugs are faulty or damaged during installation.

Importance of proper installation and torque specifications

To avoid the car from shaking after changing the ignition coil, proper installation and torque specifications are one of the most important factors.

It is critical for the safe and effective operation of any vehicle that proper installation and torque specifications are adhered to on the installation of any part or simply when tightening bolts and nuts.

Neglecting torque specifications can involve a multitude of issues, from stripped bolts to twisted brake rotors, which can cause vibrations while driving and reduce control. Conversely, not torquing enough might result in insecure wheels that rattle and stretch wheel studs, potentially causing the wheel to separate from the car – a situation that could have really severe effects. 

Thus, it is vital to tighten bolts within the appropriate range to keep your vehicle secure and reliable on the road. To avoid these issues, it is crucial to follow the torque specifications recommended for your specific vehicle. These specifications can be found in the owner’s manual or through a trusted service resource.  Whenever possible, it is best to choose the path of safety and seek outside help from experts. 

Checking for damaged spark plugs or wires

Regular maintenance of spark plugs and wires should be taken seriously, as worn or damaged parts can lead to misfiring, reduced engine performance, and decreased fuel efficiency over time.

Checking for any problems with these components is a simple procedure. Start by giving them a visual inspection to look for cracks or burn marks on the spark plugs or frayed and corroded wire.

To get an even better idea of how good your spark plugs and wires are in condition, use a multimeter to measure the resistance of each one against manufacturer specifications. 

Examine for vacuum leakage

Leaks in the vacuum system can contribute to a lean air-fuel mixture in the engine, resulting in misfires and shaking or vibrations. Check the vacuum hoses for any fractures or leaks and replace them if necessary. Additionally, a smoke test can detect vacuum breaches that are difficult to see.

Verifying correct ignition timing

If your car is still shaking after replacing the ignition coil, you may need to verify the ignition timing. Incorrect ignition timing can cause the engine to misfire, leading to shaking and other issues.

You can do this by using a timing light to check the timing marks on the engine. If you have verified the ignition timing and the car still shakes, it may be time to seek a professional diagnosis.

A qualified mechanic can use specialized equipment to check the engine for other issues that may be causing the shaking. This could include checking the fuel injectors, valve cover gasket, or other engine components.

Seeking professional diagnosis if the issue persists

When I faced this issue myself, I initially thought that replacing the ignition coil would solve the problem. However, I later realized that there could be other underlying issues that were causing the shaking.

After some research and seeking a professional diagnosis, I was able to identify and fix the root cause of the problem, leading to a smoother and more comfortable ride.


Car shakes after changing the ignition coil can be a major inconvenience, but the good news is that with a few steps, you can diagnose and repair the issue in no time.

From checking for any additional broken parts to performing a detailed engine inspection, using the suggested guide can help you save your car from costly repairs and have it running at its fullest potential.

So don’t let a bad coil or faulty parts stop you from experiencing smooth sailing— arm yourself with this information and get back on the road in no time.

That said, if the problem persists or if you find yourself overwhelmed by all of this auto care business, reaching out to an auto mechanic may be your best bet for getting back up and running as soon as possible.

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