7 Reasons Why Car Jerks When Accelerating And Here Are The Solutions

When a car jerks as you start it, there is no doubt that there is something wrong with it. Sometimes, it would get passed through the acceleration phase but it could continue while your driving. It is safe to say that your car is having some problems and I am here to help you identify it.


7 Common Reasons Why A Car Jerks When Accelerating.

And today, you will learn more about it as I will enumerate each one for you. Not only will you learn about why your car is acting up, but you will also learn how to solve it.



Check Engine

One of the most common reasons of your car jerking as you accelerate is a possible blockage in its engine. If you don't remove that blockage, your car will continue to jerk because gasses are not coming out of it when they are supposed to. You will know that this is the case when the "Check Engine" light in your car is on.

Don't ignore that light, especially when it is blinking. Aside from jerking as you accelerate, you will notice that your gas level could easily go low. At this point, I will suggest to call a professional to remove the blockage. If you don't act on it quickly, you will gas and that is just wasting your money.



Check the fuel filter for dirt because that might be the reason your car is acting up. If you haven't clean that area of your car, then there is a huge possibility that dirt has already built up in there. All you need to do it wipe those off and check if your car would do jerk again as you accelerate.




This is one of the most neglected parts of the car, the injectors. You will know this is the case when your car completely loses its power.

It is also a symptom when your car not only jerks but if you see your engine firing something out there while you are driving, then your car's injectors are definitely messed up. The truth is that it's not that serious to fix it. You don't even need to hire someone.

You will just need to clean that area using a special kit solely for injectors. They are not expensive and you could easily buy them in your local hardware store or even online. I would also suggest that you do it on a regular basis so it doesn't end up clogging your engine.


Moist Distributor Cap

Moist Distributor Cap

This is one of the major reasons why a car jerks while accelerating and sometimes, the weather is to blame. This usually occurs during the winter when you park your car outside and it is just extremely cold.

What happens is that the distributor cap could accumulate moist, which then results in the engine to be an imbalance. If the engine is not even, you can expect it to misfire as you accelerate your car.

The solution here is actually prevention. Don't park it in a cold driveway instead choose a warmer environment.


Motor Winding

Motor Winding

If you stressed out the engine, you can expect that it would go on a motor winding mode on its own. Soon as your car engine starts to wind, the jerking on your car could be felt. If the car winds only once, you can already expect your car to no longer start.

To check the motor of your car if it is winding or not and the number of times it did, you will need an Ohm meter.


Wrong Alignment

Wrong Alignment

Sometimes the engine nor the motor of the car is not the problem here, it could be that your car is having a bad reaction to pulling. It is often confused by car owners as jerking but really, it is just your car moving really slow.

To solve this, you will have to c heck you r tires and make sure that pressure in them are done right. Make sure that you have a handy tire inflator product with you at all times in case tire pressure is low.

There is a chance that it was messed up when your car suffered from some traumatic experiences. You will need to align your car's tire again the right way to fix this.


Spark Plug Error

Spark Plug Error

The cables of your car could be sensitive that it won't surprise me if that is the reason why your car jerks. This often involves the spark plug and when this is the case, you will need to change that plug immediately.

In order to prevent this from happening, you have to make sure that the spark plug is always neat. Whenever they get dirty, you can experience not only the jerking of your car during acceleration but there could also be other serious problems


These things written here are most likely what is wrong with your car and here are your best bets in fixing it. To put it in a nutshell, most of the time, a dirty engine and other car parts could be the main reason why your car jerks upon starting.

Always clean your car on a regular basis and do at least an annual overall checkup of your car to know its current condition. Make sure that it is also parked in a place with just the right temperature, which is not too cold and not too hot. A little warm would do because it would prevent it from developing moist inside the distributor cap.

If your car is not too dirty, you can opt for a waterless car wash so that you can also save on water.​

This is just a way of properly maintaining your car so you don't have to encounter hassles such as this one. It is also good if you are handy enough in knowing some of the basic things in troubleshooting car problems.

However, if you don't really know how to fix it like unwinding the motor and realigning your tires, don't hesitate to call a mechanic.


About the Author

I am David Walker ,I'm a car enthusiast. Through this blog, I want to share every single experience I had with my beloved car with you guys. Definitely feel free to comment, give feedbacks and show us what You and your cars have been through.

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(31) comments

  • Oswald October 13, 2017

    Very helpful and easy to understand

  • lungani November 30, 2017

    Hi my mazda 323 has started jerking what can i do to fix this?

      David Walker December 2, 2017

      The first thing you should do is to change the spark plugs, dist. cap and rotor (if equipped), If the problem does not go away, check the fuel pump pressure. On those vehicles, when the fuel pump is quitting, it starts like that, then runs for an hour and quits for 30 min. until it quits for good.

  • Isaura December 21, 2017

    My car jerks when I try to go fast, and stops as I go slower. What could it be?

  • Tolakele December 27, 2017

    Hi I have ford Ikon and tarted jerking last week Friday and I have put new plugs, oil filter, petrol filter and when i check ignition coil from wire number doing have enough spark. so my question is that, it can be the ignition coil that got problem.

  • Jeremy Hill December 28, 2017

    Hey,my car Burks when I’m at a stop sign or stop light. Sometimes when I’m driving it even jurks while driving down the road. What is the problem?

  • Jeremy Hill December 28, 2017

    I have a 2006 Nissan Altima

  • Khizar January 21, 2018

    Hi I have a 1996 Mercedes Benz S320 and it started jerking when my mechanic replaced the spark plugs, spark plug wires, and fuel filter. When I accelerate there seems to be a jerk or hesitation by the car. I also looked back at the exhausts and white smoke would come out and then it would disappear when I am pressing on the accelerator. So what should I do because it takes so long just to speed up when you go on the highway?

  • Joe Spicer February 3, 2018

    2004 dodge stratus sxt coupe 2.4L

    Engine light is on.

    It will start jerking when accelerating from a stand still or at a slow pace.

    Already changed the spark plugs (no change).

      bre July 10, 2018

      My car is doing the same thing. Any answers on yours? Did you ever fix it?

  • Ashley February 3, 2018

    My car is hesitating when accelerating but it only does it sometimes. I thought it was my fuel filter but I changed that and it’s still doing it? Could it be my fuel pump? And I really need to know before I end up broke down… ):

  • Amari March 15, 2018

    I am having the “jerking upon acceleration” problem with my car and I have had the distributor and rotor replaced as well and the spark plugs and yet I’m still having the same problem. Just not as bad though. Why could this still be happening? Should I maybe use some fuel injector cleaner?

      Mildref July 26, 2018

      Have 2010 Chevie cobalt

  • Zomzi March 19, 2018

    I’m driving Golf Velocity,I’ve noticed yesterday that it jerks when I’m excalarating its okay when I’m driving slowing.I’m worried,what could be the problem?

  • tito March 23, 2018

    My car jerks and stops and it does not want to start, sometimes it starts after several attempts. I changed oil, oil filter, petrol filter, plugs, timing chain and fan belt. In the morning and rainy days it is worse

    what could be the problem

    from tito

  • Kapesha April 10, 2018

    Very educating

  • Sandy April 14, 2018

    I have a Chrysler Sebring and it is jerking and won’t go very fast…what is wrong
    with this car?

  • DAWN MARTIN April 23, 2018


  • hendry May 14, 2018

    hi i am driving an audi a4 v6 Quattro 2.4 last week the car just to jerk and then wouldn’t start again we have changed the fuel pump and the car is driving again but still jerks while driving what can be the cause of it.
    tour assistance in this regard is highly appreciated thank you

  • cjay May 14, 2018

    What if my check engine light is not coming on but still jerks and stalls when I get on the gas pretty hard…what would you do first…thanks

  • Peter Botha June 1, 2018

    I own a car and I am always eager to know causes of most problems on my car. I am satisfied with your explanation about the jerking causes. Thank you very much.

  • Tallis June 20, 2018

    I have a 2009 Chevy impala and it jerks when I accerate and sometimes when I come to a stop. How do I go about this problem?

  • Mulletz July 6, 2018

    Just got wof done and had full service car repairs cars a Nissan Tiida it started jerking as I was exiting the roundabout and I had to pull over cause it wasn’t picking up speed cleaned every thing still no change

      HReba September 29, 2019

      Hey, I know its been over a year since you posted but any chance you had this resolved? My Tiida is doing the same thing

  • Sylvester Enato September 13, 2018

    My card is doing hard starting, Volkswagen Golf Mk4
    when i am accelerating, it jerk, stop at traffic. please can you help me out?


  • Richard November 21, 2018

    Pls using Hyundai sonata Gas engine. The car was jecking and I changed the spark plugs it stop for three days after it now jecks when I accelerate what is the cause pls

  • Clyde Jalosjos November 24, 2018

    Thank you David for sharing your expertise as a car enthusiast but my problem is different. At any gear positioned my car jerk/surge when I pressed the accelerator hard to speed up mostly in overtaking making no speed up happend because of the jerking. Another, when car is already in motion after changing gear, while in motion and wanted to speed up by pressing the accelerator it jerks. Any suggestion you can advise me please.

    Thank you for your kind help,
    Clyde B. Jalosjos

  • Dana February 2, 2019

    Very helpful thanks

  • King February 21, 2019

    my honda fit was jerk in and when I checked with the mechanic we noticed two of the coil packs were broken. after changing it the car stopped. A day latter after I bought gas at a new gas station the car started jerking slightly when on neutral and in motion. what could be the peoblem

  • Anurag September 26, 2019

    As mentioned above the 7 reasons, can all of these detected in OBD scanner

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