Rebuilding an Engine
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You’re probably thinking that rebuilding an engine isn’t cheap. Well, it’s not. But there are some notable benefits to rebuilding your engine over purchasing a new car. First, it depends on how worn down your current engine is and how much damage it has sustained. The cost of a rebuild will vary depending on the number of cylinders in your engine (e.g. a six-cylinder will be more expensive than a four; a diesel engine will need more expensive parts than a gas engine).
Bearings and Pistons
The moving parts of your engine (the crankshaft, rods, and pistons) are built to last for thousands of miles, but over time all engines wear down. Your bearings (which keep your moving parts moving) and your piston rings (more on those in a moment) will be the essential pieces that need to be rebuilt.
The bearings in your engine are lubricated by engine oil. It should come as no surprise that failing to regularly change your oil will lead to accelerated wear on your bearings and damage your engine in the long run. You’ll be able to hear this problem the worse it gets (a loud knocking will arise from under your hood) and if you ignore it completely you’ll actually be able to see it too (remember, metal shavings in your drained engine oil = bad news).
If your bearings protect the moving parts in your engine, your piston rings protect your exploding parts. Piston rings seal the cylinders of your engine where gasoline is being burned to create combustion. A worn seal will create an effect called “blow-by”: Crankcase oil leaks through the rings and is burned along with your fuel mixture, leading to a greater volume of smoke in your exhaust.
What is Rebuilt
If you choose to rebuild your engine, the “short block” (the lower half of your engine) will be removed and taken apart. If your engine has been abused for too long, your technicians should tell you to give it up for a lost cause. Most parts, however, can be replaced. The cylinder chambers and heads will be cleaned and refitted to make sure the new pieces all fit properly.
To Rebuild or Not to Rebuild
Rebuilding your engine can rejuvenate its performance, returning it to its almost mint glory. Expect your fuel economy to bounce back to the day you drove it off the lot. However, rebuilding can be expensive. Before you choose to rebuild, ask your mechanic the following questions: 1) Is my engine in such a state that I’d be better off trading it with a less used engine? 2) Will a rebuild cost so much that I’d be better off selling it and buying a new car?
You can discuss the pros and cons of rebuilding your engine with the auto professionals at Advanced Computer Automotive. You can be sure that we’ll give you the straight story on whether your engine deserves a new lease on life or it’s time to send it off to the big junkyard in the sky.