Pistons are among the most important parts of an engine. If they have issues, you will defiantly have engine trouble. In extreme cases, this could be justification for an engine replacement. They hold the responsibility of converting fuel into energy. When a piston goes bad, expect to experience a big drop in performance. In some instances, you could lose all engine power. Furthermore, here are five problems that can lead to a damaged piston.
1. Broken Timing Belt
If you are having engine trouble, keep reading. Also, if your vehicle engine’s is designed with a timing belt, be sure to have it replaced at the recommended interval. Over time, this rubber component gradually begins to weaken. While some timing belts need to be replaced every 60,000 miles, others are rated to last for more than 100,000 miles.
You definitely don’t want a timing belt to suddenly snap while you’re driving. On an interference engine, this could cause the pistons and valves to collide. Catastrophic engine damage will be the probable outcome.
2. Engine Detonation
It’s important to fill your gas tank with the correct type of fuel. Typically, high-performance cars and luxury vehicles are tuned to use premium gasoline. Repeatedly using low octane fuel in these automobiles can cause engine detonation. Worn-out spark plugs and carbon buildup from excessive idling also make engine denotation more likely to occur.
When engine donation occurs, an excessive amount of internal heat is produced, which is engine trouble. Temperatures can become hot enough to melt an aluminum piston. To help counteract the effects of using a lower octane, automakers engineer vehicles with components called knock sensors. They signal the car’s computer to reduce ignition timing, which ultimately protects the engine. The bad news is that knock sensors can fail.
3. Low Oil Level
Routine maintenance is the ultimate key to keeping your vehicle running strong. Mechanics stress the importance off regularly checking the oil level. It’s a simple step that only takes a minute of your time. Once some vehicles surpass the 50,000-mile mark, they tend to consume motor oil at faster rate.
A piston is a moving part, which must be properly lubricated at all times. As the piston slides up, oil is sprayed on its undersides. Also, when the oil level becomes too low, friction becomes a serious issue. Poor lubrication could result in a stuck piston. However, the damage caused by metal-to-metal contact is even more detrimental.
4. Engine Overheating
Engine overheating is one of the most destructive car problems. To prevent severe engine damage, it’s important to pull your car over as soon as possible. Within seconds, temperatures can rise to dangerous levels.
As mentioned earlier, virtually all modern pistons are made from aluminum alloy. While aluminum is light and resistant to corrosion, it can warp when exposed to extreme heat. Also, if you allow the engine too get to hot, the pistons can bend and deform. Additionally, this means the engine won’t be able to maintain the proper compression, thus leading to a major power loss. The vehicle will not be drivable in some instances.
5. A Hydrolocked Engine
A hydrolocked engine is a very serious problem. It’s a condition where an excessive amount of water enters the engine at once. Also, this naturally prevents the pistons from fully compressing. As you know, certain streets in Asheville are prone to flooding after an intense rainstorm. Unfortunately, some hard-headed motorists choose to drive their car through the high water.
If you attempt to drive a vehicle with a hydrolocked engine, the piston rod can suddenly break. Lastly, your only option will be to either spend the money on the necessary repairs or buy another engine.