Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems

As the sun sets and you’re driving your trusty Mazda 3 home after a long day, suddenly your car starts to sputter. The check engine light flickers on and off like a distress signal, indicating that something isn’t right beneath the hood. Yes, we’re talking about Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems.

Issues like, no spark, misfiring, ignition coil complete failure, etc. have been annoying among owners for so long. If you’ve ever experienced any of these issues, then this guide is for you. 

We’ll dive deep into understanding what these issues mean for your vehicle’s performance and longevity. Besides, we will provide tips on how to diagnose and potentially solve these perplexing Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems before they spiral out of control.

Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems

Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems

Mazda 3 Ignition Coil Problems are commonly marked by your vehicle’s inconsistent performance and power drops during acceleration. These hiccups are not just signs of aging, they could indicate a faulty ignition coil struggling to produce the spark required for combustion. Here are some of the common issues in Mazda 3. 

No Spark

A significant number of Mazda 3 owners have reported experiencing a lack of spark across all four cylinders. This issue typically arises when the vehicle has been left idle for an extended period. This problem originated from a misfire issue, and despite replacing the spark plugs and coils, the car failed to start. 

In such scenarios, it’s advisable to verify whether the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) is dispatching a trigger signal to the coils using a multi-meter equipped with a hertz setting. 

You can do this by back-probing the trigger wire while keeping the connector plugged in – placing the positive lead at the trigger wire and attaching the negative probe to the battery negative. If you receive an HZ reading while cranking up your vehicle, it implies that your PCM is transmitting signals correctly.

However, it’s important to note that even if you’ve replaced your coil with a new one, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re functioning as they should be. Having some understanding of pulse width modulated signals can be beneficial here. 

Just because you can get them to work with an external source doesn’t guarantee their compatibility with an optimal signal from your Engine Control Unit (ECU).

Misfiring Issue

Certain Mazda 3 models have reported issues related to engine power loss, irregular idling, and a lit check engine light. These problems are often associated with one or more of the misfire-related Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) such as P0300:00, P0301:00, P0302:00, P0303:00, and P0304:00. 

This issue is likely due to an internal malfunction in the ignition coil(s), specifically when there is a significant temperature difference between cold and warm environments. 

Mazda has acknowledged this problem and modified its production process for the ignition coil to rectify it. They further clarified that the ignition coils are procured from two suppliers – YUMEBISHI and MITSUBISHI. However, only the YUMEBISHI-made ignition coils seem to be affected by this issue.

To differentiate between YUMEBISHI and MITSUBISHI coils, you can check their lot numbers (A). A 4-digit number indicates a YUMEBISHI coil while a 5-digit number signifies a MITSUBISHI coil. To address this problem:

1. Confirm the customer’s complaint and identify any existing misfire-related DTC(s) using the Mazda Modular Diagnostic System (M-MDS).

2. Swap out the two ignition coils between a cylinder with a misfire (identified by DTC) and one without a misfire. If the misfire moves to another cylinder, it means that your ignition coil is defective, proceed to the next step. 

However, if there’s no change in the misfire location then it might be due to other issues such as wiring harness or spark plug malfunction which will require further diagnosis as per the workshop manual.

3. Replace faulty ignition coil(s) with upgraded ones following instructions provided in workshop manual section 01-18.

4. Lastly, inspect if any remaining functional coils were manufactured by YUMEBISHI before lot number 6328 (produced before March 28, 2016). If so, replace these with updated versions as well.

Ignition Coil Failure

Numerous Mazda 3 owners have been thrown into a frenzy due to ignition coil breakdowns. To understand this, you need to know that the ignition coil essentially serves as a high-energy storage unit. 

The primary cause of its failure is often because this energy isn’t flowing properly, resulting in repeated overloads and consequent failure. Here’s what could be causing your ignition coil issues: 

Firstly, check if your engine is overheating by looking at the temperature dial on your car dashboard. If it’s showing abnormal readings, get it rectified immediately! 

Secondly, your spark plugs might be the culprit – they could be worn out or coated with excessive carbon deposits. A quick inspection should reveal their condition. If they’re not up to par, replace them with OEM ones from an authorized dealer for peace of mind, even though they may cost a bit more. 

However, if budget constraints are an issue, you can opt for the closest match available in the market. Lastly, faulty cables connecting the coil and spark plugs could also be responsible for the problem. In such cases, purchasing new ones would be advisable.

Also keep in mind that if there’s any change in the gap of your spark plug, it needs to be adjusted according to your car manual’s specifications.

How to Diagnose Bad Ignition Coil Pack on Mazda 3

To identify a faulty ignition coil in a Mazda3 that has its check engine light on due to misfiring, you should exchange the ignition coil of the misfiring cylinder with another. Connect a scan device to your Mazda3’s OBD2 port and note down the error code. 

For instance, if it reads P0303, it indicates that cylinder 3 is misfiring. Once your Mazda3 has cooled down to avoid burns, take out the ignition coil from cylinder 3 and switch it with another one, such as cylinder 2. Only swap the ignition coils, not the spark plug wire connectors. 

Disconnect the electrical connectors before switching and reconnect after exchanging them. Restart your Mazda3 and read out the error codes using a scan tool. 

If it now displays error code P0302 which signifies a misfire on cylinder number 2 and there are no more misfires on cylinder number 3, this indicates that you have a defective ignition coil that needs replacement.

Ignition Coil Replacement on Mazda 3

Ignition coil replacement is really easy to do, you only need a couple of tools. Let’s get to it. The first tool you need is a Blue Driver, it’s a cool thing, and a great investment. 

Using this, not only can you scan your system for codes, but you can also look at diagnostic information. You can look at how your sensors are performing live. And of course, you can clear the check engine light as well. 

For the replacement job, you’ll also need a 10 mil socket and a pair of pliers. So first things first, take off your cover. Go from the front of the engine to the rear, cylinder 1, cylinder 2, 3, and 4. There will be two pegs for the engine cover. So twist them off and then there’s a 10 mil socket under there. 

Don’t lose this, just go to screw it in a couple of threads. As you crack that loose, make sure it moves, and you can push your thumb down on this connector and pull out at the same time. 

This way the connector will come off. You can just give it a pull and there comes out the entire coil. You may need to spend around $155 for this thing. 

Before you go putting the new coil on, make sure you clean around here. To put the bolt on you have to make sure that you press down on it, and then it sits on the spark plug Just give it a wiggle, and that should be fine. Now put the bolt back, the connector, and the mounting peg for the engine cover. Take all your tools. There you are all finished. 

Final Words

Mazda 3 ignition coil problems can cause serious performance issues and even damage to your vehicle’s engine if not addressed promptly. The signs of a failing ignition coil such as misfiring, decreased fuel efficiency, and difficulty starting the car cannot be ignored. 

Regular maintenance checks and early detection can save you from expensive repairs in the long run. It is highly recommended that vehicle owners consult with a trusted mechanic or a Mazda service center when they notice these symptoms. Stay proactive about your Mazda 3’s health. After all, prevention is always better than cure.

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