What is Fuel Injection?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 01 May 2020
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Fuel injection is a system that supplies a vehicle's fuel directly into the cylinders of into the intake manifold of the engine, eliminating the need for a carburetor. This intake manifold is found ahead of the cylinders in most fuel injected engines. How much gas is supplied to the engine is monitored by electronic sensors that ensure that the correct amount is available to meet the speed required. As long as the electronic sensor is working properly within the system, the chances of the automobile engine choking or flooding are almost non-existent.

There are some variations on the actual components of fuel injection systems. For example, throttle body systems will have the actual injectors located in the throttle body housing, where they supply the fuel to the intake manifold first. Single point systems provide the fuel directly to the cylinders from a single injector, while multi-port fuel injection systems will use a ratio of one injector for each cylinder in the engine. While there is some disagreement about which variation is more efficient, most supporters believe that any of the methods will provide a superior fuel and air mixture than the use of a carburetor.

To make sure that the fuel properly mixes with air and also reaches the combustion chamber efficiently, a pump will provide pressure to the injectors. The electronic sensor uses the pressure of the pump to help regulate the amount of fuel that is injected at any given time. The pump responds directly to the amount of pressure applied to the gas pedal, which will then engage the electronic sensor and ensure that the correct amount of fuel is injected to allow the car to accelerate or maintain its speed.

While engines using fuel injection tend to have fewer operational issues than those that have a carburetor, the process for isolating and repairing a problem can be more costly. Still, the benefits of engine efficiency, coupled with a more economic use of fuel, make the system very attractive to many automobile owners. As the technology continues to be refined, the incidence of engine trouble will probably decrease even further.

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