How To Bypass Reduced Engine Power in 3 STEPS!

Reduced car engine error can happen for several different reasons, but if you come across this message on your car’s dashboard it simply means your car is no longer fit to operate at full capacity.

Some reasons why the reduced engine power error can occur could be a result of the failure of the turbocharger or supercharger, the exhaust being clogged with carbon deposit, or the fuel injectors being faulty.

The error might still come up if your engine is overheating and you drive for a long period.

While your carry still runs at a reduced rate you must have it fixed or taken to a mechanic to have it fixed for you.

How To Bypass Reduced Engine Power

There are some ways you can bypass reduced engine power and they are:

  • Catalytic Converter

The first place to check is the catalytic converter when you are experiencing reduced power issues.

When the OBD discovers an issue with the converter, it will compensate for what it interprets as a potential problem and reduce the engine power to do so.

To bypass the reduced engine power, simply replace the catalytic converter.

  • The ECU sensors

The ECU is filled with many sensors and any problem with any of the sensors will result in reduced engine power, to bypass the reduced engine power, have the firmware updated or have it replaced altogether.

The ECU is used to calculate the best way to distribute power.

  • Sensors

Checking sensors is also an important task when it comes to reducing engine power, if one of the sensors fails to send the correct needed information to the ECU, it will cause a problem with how your engine runs, to solve the problem, you will need to have the damaged sensors replaced.

These sensors include oxygen, mass airflow, and manifold absolute pressure.

  • Electrical Wiring and Cable

If your car engine fails to produce the correct amount of power, consider checking the electrical wirings and cables.

Check the electrical cables and replace any damaged ones.

  • Clean Air Filter

There are oil build-ups on the valves or the seal that when compromised will prevent oxygen from entering and reducing the engine power.

Open up the intake manifold and brush off the grime inside it.

What Does Reduced Engine Power Mean?

Reduced engine power means the performance of your car engine is not optimal.

If your car for instance is not accelerating well, it will bring up a warning flashlight to show you have engine power reduced.

The reduced engine power means your vehicle’s performance has been reduced to avoid damaging its engine.

The electronic control unit(ECU) is the one that triggers the reduced power mode when it has detected a system failure.

The engine power reduced is a way of alerting you that your vehicle has entered the fail-safe mode.

When you drive it, you will notice your vehicle’s performance to be limited. In SE cases, the ECU of the car may cut off fuel delivery to the car engine making it undrivable.

The reduced power can prevent your vehicle from shifting among other things.

The vehicle entering safe mode will let you drive home safely without causing further damage to either the transmission or the engine.

What are the Main Causes of Reduced Engine Power?

As we earlier stated, many things lead to the cause of reduced engine power.

But the most common cause is bad engine sensors like bad oxygen sensor, a clogged catalytic converter, loose connection, MAF sensor, bad throttle body, etc.

There are a lot of things that may cause a reduced power engine, the best method is to use an OBD2 scanner to check the trouble codes.

Doing this will enable you to save money that you might have otherwise used to replace good parts that you think might have been faulty.

For instance, having a defective oxygen sensor will send faulty information to the computer ECU causing adjustments to be made which should not have been made in the first place.

This will lead to reduced engine power and poor performance as a result of having an imbalance in the air-fuel mixture.

How To Fix Reduced Engine Power

The best way to fix reduced engine power is to take it to an auto shop.

Have a professional mechanic do a comprehensive check on it.

And find out what caused the reduced engine power initially before you can consider having it fixed.

The mechanic will find out what the problem Is by using an OBD II scan or any other similar equipment.

After finding out the problem, they will proceed further to have it fixed.

If you want to attempt fixing the issue yourself, you can check for loose wires or weak ground cable connection, and reconnect or repair the cables and wires if any of them is broken.

Loose cables, harnesses, and clamps are the most common triggers of reduced engine power.

Consider checking the throttle, airflow, oxygen sensors, and electric control units among other places. Once you discover any faults in them, have them repaired or replaced if possible.

Clogging of the catalytic converter can as well cause the issue of reduced engine power, take the unit to an auto repair shop and have it repaired. But if you are buoyant enough, you can consider replacing it. However, this part is quite expensive as it will cost as much as $2000.

Another possible cause is the car battery, check the battery for loose connections or corrosion. Remove the corrosion and reconnect the loose connection to sort out this problem.

How To Bypass Reduced Engine Power

Reduced car engine error can happen for several different reasons, but if you come across this message on your car’s dashboard it simply means your car is no longer fit to operate at full capacity.

Some reasons why the reduced engine power error can occur could be a result of the failure of the turbocharger or supercharger, the exhaust being clogged with carbon deposit, or the fuel injectors being faulty.

The error might still come up if your engine is overheating and you drive for a long period.

While your carry still runs at a reduced rate you must have it fixed or taken to a mechanic to have it fixed for you.

There are some ways you can bypass reduced engine power and they are:

  • Catalytic Converter

The first place to check is the catalytic converter when you are experiencing reduced power issues.

When the OBD discovers an issue with the converter, it will compensate for what it interprets as a potential problem and reduce the engine power to do so.

To bypass the reduced engine power, simply replace the catalytic converter.

  • The ECU sensors

The ECU is filled with many sensors and any problem with any of the sensors will result in reduced engine power, to bypass the reduced engine power, have the firmware updated or have it replaced altogether.

The ECU is used to calculate the best way to distribute power.

  • Sensors

Checking sensors is also an important task when it comes to reducing engine power, if one of the sensors fails to send the correct needed information to the ECU, it will cause a problem with how your engine runs, to solve the problem, you will need to have the damaged sensors replaced.

These sensors include oxygen, mass airflow, and manifold absolute pressure.

  • Electrical Wiring and Cable

If your car engine fails to produce the correct amount of power, consider checking the electrical wirings and cables.

Check the electrical cables and replace any damaged ones.

  • Clean Air Filter

There are oil build-ups on the valves or the seal that when compromised will prevent oxygen from entering and reducing the engine power.

Open up the intake manifold and brush off the grime inside it.

  • Transmission Fluid

Low transmission oil or a slipping clutch can cause reduced engine power, check the transmission oil, if it is short have it replaced.

Consider checking the throttle, airflow, oxygen sensors, and electric control units among other places. Once you discover any faults in them, have them repaired or replaced if possible.

Another possible cause is the car battery, check the battery for loose connections or corrosion. Remove the corrosion and reconnect the loose connection to sort out this problem.

How To Reset Reduced Engine Power Light

The reduced engine power light unfortunately can not be reset with just a push of a button or just a switch.

The light came on as a sort of warning to let you know something was wrong with the vehicle’s engine

It is better to fix whatever triggered the alarm in the first place, if you don’t know how to fix it, your mechanic can.

Do note that this light is triggered when the vehicle’s computer identifies a problem with either the car’s engine, transmission, performance, drivability, or emission system.

The first step to resetting the reduced engine power light is to have the problem that caused the light to come on fixed.

After doing that the engine light will normally go off on its own Accord.

How To Bypass Reduced Engine Power

What is the Cost Of Fix Reduced Engine Power?

The cost of fixing the reduced engine power depends on the part of the vehicle that is faulty and triggering the problem.

It is most beneficial to have the whole thing replaced than resulting to replace each part.

It could cost from $100 to $600 even more.

It is unlikely that you will want your car to perform less than what it is designed for.

The first step is to get a mechanic to determine what is wrong with your engine.

Changing just the catalytic converter will not cost you anything less than $2000, excluding that, you can get other parts replaced from $100 to $500.

Some likely possible reasons why your reduced engine power light comes on are:

  • Failing oxygen sensors
  • Bad catalytic converter
  • The bad throttle position sensor
  • Loose connections amongst others.

The earlier you get it to a mechanic and get it fixed, the less money you will need to pay for repairs.

Because if you fail to take it there on time, the issue will only grow worse making you spend more money than you wouldn’t have had to.

How do I Reset My Reduced Engine Power Light?

The reduced engine power light unfortunately can not be reset with just a push of a button or just a switch.

The light came on as a sort of warning to let you know something was wrong with the vehicle’s engine

It is better to fix whatever triggered the ala in the first place, if you don’t know how to fix it, your mechanic can.

Do note that this light is triggered when the vehicle’s computer identifies a problem with either the car’s engine, transmission, performance, drivability, or emission system.

The first step to resetting the reduced engine power light is to have the problem that caused the light to come on fixed.

After doing that the engine light will normally go off on its own Accord.

ALSO SEE: How to Turn off Stabilitrak In Your Car

Is it safe to drive with reduced engine power?

Yes, it is possible to drive with reduced engine power but it is not advisable.

With the reduced engine power, it is important to know that the engine will not go above a certain speed.

Driving it depends on the reason why the engine has reduced power.

If it is a result of poor air and fuel mix, or timing, then it is dangerous to drive with it as it can lead to engine failure in certain instances. You might risk a fire if the engine is down as a result of a fuel leak in one of the injectors.

But if it is not any of these issues then you can drive it as it will have no real adverse effects unless of course being slower than it is meant to be.

How Much Does It Cost To Fix Reduced Engine Power?

The cost of fixing the reduced engine power depends on the part of the vehicle that is faulty and triggering the problem.

It is most beneficial to have the whole thing replaced than resulting to replace each part.

It could cost from $100 to $600 even more.

It is unlikely that you will want your car to perform less than what it is designed for.

The first step is to get a mechanic to determine what is wrong with your engine.

Changing just the catalytic converter will not cost you anything less than $2000, excluding that, you can get other parts replaced from $100 to $500.

Some likely possible reasons why your reduced engine power light comes on are:

  • Failing oxygen sensors
  • Bad catalytic converter
  • The bad throttle position sensor
  • Loose connections amongst others.

The earlier you get it to a mechanic and get it fixed, the less money you will need to pay for repairs.

Because if you fail to take it there on time, the issue will only grow worse making you spend more money than you wouldn’t have had to.

Will a bad O2 sensor cause reduced engine power?

Yes, a bad oxygen sensor will cause a reduced engine power.

Bad oxygen or O2 sensors are caused by engine misfires. Your engine will struggle to function optimally and you will feel your car being sluggish and not driving well, this happens as a result of the ratio of oxygen to fuel being thrown off.

A faulty oxygen sensor will also hurt engine timing, the interval of combustion, and other essential functions as well.

Some significant signs of your oxygen sensor failing include:

  • Misfiring
  • Running irregularly while idling
  • Stalling
  • Running rough
  • Loss of power
  • Hesitation etc.

Why Does My Chevy Malibu Say Engine Power Reduced?

When your Chevy Malibu says engine power reduced it simply means there has been a reduced engine performance that was purposely done.

It is triggered when a system fails.

This causes vehicles to allegedly looses power and slow down to 20 miles an hour even when you are driving at highway speed.

This problem has been a source of concern for Malibu owners as the loss of power makes it impossible to accelerate to a safe speed.

Can bad spark plugs reduce engine power?

Yes. A bad spark plug wi reduce engine power as well as increase exhaust emission and reduced fuel economy.

It can damage the catalytic converter when enough raw fuel is dumped into the exhaust as a result of a single misfiring spark plug

When they are worn out, not tuned, or installed properly will cause the engine to misfire as well as chug and lose power.

The spark plugs are in charge of providing quality spark used in ignoring air-fuel mixture and without it, proper combustion will just not be possible.

Spark plugs will also fail when they are exposed to high temperatures.

Can A Bad Battery Cause Reduced Engine Power?

Yes. A bad or dying battery will indeed cause reduced engine power performance.

The battery is responsible for producing power, but if there is not enough power available, it will not be able to start up the car.

If you are experiencing engine rolls it is better to schedule an appointment with your mechanic to have it checked and if possible have the battery replaced.

Can I Drive With Reduced Engine Power?

Yes, it is possible to drive with reduced engine power but it is not advisable.

With the reduced engine power, it is important to know that the engine will not go above a certain speed.

Driving it depends on the reason why the engine has reduced power.

If it is a result of poor air and fuel mix, or timing, then it is dangerous to drive with it as it can lead to engine failure in certain instances. You might risk a fire if the engine is down as a result of a fuel leak in one of the injectors.

But if it is not any of these issues then you can drive it as it will have no real adverse effects unless of course being slower than it is meant to be.

Does Low Oil Cause Engine Power Reduced?

When engine oil pressure drops, it increases the friction between different parts of the vehicle. When it drops the performance of the engine will also drop.

It is imperative to watch out for signs of decreased engine performance such as engine stalling or reduce fuel economy.

Low transmission oil or a slipping clutch can cause reduced engine power, check the transmission oil, if it is short have it replaced.

Having a low engine oil can result in a very serious issue, when it happens expect issues like reduced fuel economy, poor performance, or even loss of power.

In some cases, it can lead to a loss of acceleration in the vehicle. Although it is not the most common reason for reduced engine power.

For instance, a modern car engine features a variable valve timing system that relies on oil pressure to operate, so having a low oil or a dirt one can inhibit the performance of this system thereby leading to hesitation or even lack of acceleration.

The function of the oil is to lubricate all the moving parts of an engine, if an engine requires an oil change, then it should be done regularly to enable the oil to perform its normal function.

Can an Oil Change Fix Reduced Engine Power?

Somehow. An oil change can fix the problem of a reduced engine power if that was the underlying problem why the engine is having the problem in the first place.

Old oil will reduce engine performance, mileage, and horsepower and eventually shorten the life of a vehicle’s engine.

Reduced engine power can be caused by any number of things such as mid fires, knock sensors, low fuel rail pressure, etc.

Some of the listed things that cause the reduced engine power can be fixed just by taking a trip to your mechanic to enable him properly diagnosed the fault.

Author: Mechanic Mike Besso

Hi There, I am Mike Besso and this website is dedicated to the automotive industry. I have been a mechanic for many years and my experience includes fifteen specialization in heavy commercial work as well as private cars. I am a specialist and certified automotive mechanic (Both Heavy Commercial and Private Cars). I worked for a long time at Global Rebound Automotive companies (Toyota, TATA, BMW, Nissan, TVs, and Others ) as a Mechanic and Mechanics Supervisor. I hope to share some of my knowledge with others.

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