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Signs & symptoms of a bad mass air flow sensor on an Oldsmobile Aurora

Updated February 21, 2017

The Oldsmobile Aurora is a luxury passenger sedan that first began production in 1995. If any of the vehicle's sophisticated systems begin to malfunction, it can turn a comfortable driving experience into a harrowing ordeal. This is especially true for the vehicle's mass air flow sensor, which can affect driveability and engine performance.

Check engine light

The appearance of your "check engine" light is often the first sign that a problem could be brewing in your Aurora's airflow system. The check engine light appears because your vehicle's on-board computer detects a problem or fluctuation with air flowing into or out of the engine. Your vehicle may not show any other symptoms that a problem is occurring with its mass air flow sensor at first, according to car-buying guide website Samarins.

Stalling and poor acceleration

A bad or failing mass air flow sensor can cause engine stalling due to a fluctuation in the fuel-air mixture entering the engine. Too much air in the engine block inhibits combustion at lower speeds and during acceleration. You may experience poor acceleration most when the engine is initially started or when attempting to accelerate from a standstill. Engine stalling in the Aurora will occur most often during idling.

Engine misfire and overheating

An engine misfire caused by a bad mass air flow sensor occurs most frequently when the engine is cold. Timing in the engine is thrown off due to the abnormal mixture of air-to-fuel, causing one or more of the engine's cylinders to fire out of sequence. The result is a clanging or banging sound accompanied by sluggish acceleration. According to the website 2CarPros, a malfunctioning mass air flow sensor in an Aurora can cause engine overheating, because the sensor doesn't properly detect the rate of air going into the engine. Components begin to boil in an automobile at 125 degrees Celsius.

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About the Author

Jonathan Lister has been a writer and content marketer since 2003. His latest book publication, "Bullet, a Demos City Novel" is forthcoming from J Taylor Publishing in June 2014. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Shippensburg University and a Master of Fine Arts in writing and poetics from Naropa University.