An Engine Rebuild Primer For Laymen


Even the best auto mechanics may unintentionally throw around terminology that's difficult to understand, and the stress of the situation is compounded when a huge repair bill is staring you in the face. Unfortunately, one of the worst things that you can hear on one of these trips is that your engine needs a rebuild. What is an engine rebuild and why are they so expensive? Read on to find out.

The ABCs of Rebuilds

Your engine is the beating heart of your vehicle. It's the large component in the center of your engine bay that uses the process of combustion to convert your fuel's energy into mechanical work that can drive your car's wheels. Internal combustion engines are complex machines that spend their days containing massively energetic explosions hundreds of times per minute. Internally, your engine is composed of a large number of separate moving parts, all of which must be capable of withstanding incredible amounts of heat and force. It's the job of your oil to keep these parts lubricated and your coolant to keep the engine from overheating.

Unfortunately, the internal components of your engine are not immune to damage. Unlike many types of repairs, internal engine work can rarely be performed with the engine still in your vehicle's engine bay. When your mechanic tells you that your engine needs to be rebuilt, it will usually involve removing the engine from the vehicle so that it can be disassembled and worn out or damaged components can be replaced. Although parts for a rebuild are usually reasonably priced, the labor of this job is exceptionally high compared to most repairs.

When Do You Need a Rebuild?

Although "routine" rebuilds are common on commercial vehicles, most personal vehicles only require them if something catastrophic has happened which has resulted in internal engine damage. The most common causes of this type of damage include overheating and lack of lubrication. Allowing modern engines to overheat will often result in serious damage to internal components, and may even warp your engine's head (the upper part of the engine which contains the tops of the cylinders). The cost to repair the damage of this kind can easily stretch into the thousands of dollars, depending on the type of vehicle that you own.

A lack of oil pressure can cause even more catastrophic damage, perhaps even destroying the engine entirely. This is often the result of allowing the oil level to fall too low when a leak is present or failure of the engine oil pump. In general, if the low oil pressure light is on, it means that something has gone catastrophically wrong and the car should be turned off and pulled over immediately. In many cases, running with low oil pressure for even a few seconds is enough to cause serious internal damage

Ultimately, both rebuilding and replacing an engine are among the most expensive repairs you can conduct in a car. If the car is not worth much, then it may not be worth the expense. If your car is relatively new or if it has special value to you, then a rebuild is a good way to get it back on the road and driving like new. Contact an auto service professional for more information.


22 July 2019

maintaining the brakes on your car

When is the last time you had your brakes checked? Are you waiting until you hear the brake pads grinding into the rotors before you do anything to replace them? Does your car pull to one side when you press on the brakes? Do you feel a shimmying in your steering wheel and brake pedal as you press the pedal to stop? If you have any of these issues, it is time for you to learn how to care for the brakes on your car effectively. Taking preventative measures and getting repair work done before serious problems arise will save you money over the years.