The points and condenser system is normally found on older model vehicles, such as classic cars. The points and condenser system works with an electrical charge that is sent to an ignition coil, which was connected to the distributor cap. The condenser is attached to the system by breaker points. The condenser and distributor rotate so that the points open and close continuously. The current from the ignition flows through the contacts and sends the voltage to the spark plugs, which ignite the fuel. The condensers last around 20,000 miles, so they do need to be replaced from time to time as a normal service item. Here are some common symptoms that hint towards having failing points and condenser:
1. Vehicle not starting
If your vehicle will not start, it is possible there is a problem somewhere within the points and condenser. The ignition system can be a complicated system, especially to someone who has never worked with them before, so it is best to contact professional mechanic to diagnose and repair the problem. From there, the mechanics can replace the points and condenser system if needed, so you can have your vehicle up and running in no time.
2. Engine will not fire
When you try starting your vehicle, if the engine turns over but does not catch, this is a potential points and condenser problem. It is a good idea to check the battery and other common starting faults to rule out any obvious causes of your engine not firing. If the battery is fine, contact the professionals at YourMechanic to have them look at the points and condenser and diagnose the issue.
3. Engine runs rough
A failing points and condenser system can cause rough running, misfires, lean and rich conditions. If the engine is difficult to start, and runs rough once it does start, then it is time to contact a mechanic to have a look at the system and find out exactly what the problem is. It is better to have it replaced now than when you are in an emergency situation and your vehicle will not start.
If your vehicle runs rough, the engine will not fire, or the vehicle will not start at all, it may the points and condenser system that is the issue. YourMechanic makes getting repairs to your points and condenser easy by coming to your home or office to diagnose or fix issues. You can book a service online 24/7. YourMechanic’s qualified technicians are also available for any questions that may arise.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Symptoms of Bad or Failing Points & Condenser and was authored by Spencer Clayton.