The Most Common Internal Combustion Engine Problems
Compared with internal combustion engines, regular maintenance is another area where EVs benefit their owners. You can forget about oil changes and the constant repairs needed to keep a gas vehicle running well.
Of course, some internal combustion engines are more prone to engine problems than others. The most common car engine problems include oil leaks, contaminated coolant, engine bearing failure, blown head gaskets and dirty or clogged fuel injectors.
Oil leaks are the most common car problem, according to AAA. They can be caused by worn seals and gaskets, loose valve covers, or a damaged oil pan. Oil stains on your driveway are a telltale sign of an oil leak because they're the result of the excess oil dripping out into nearby places where it will be easy to see.
Your car’s cooling system is an integral part of the engine. It keeps your engine at a safe temperature, preventing it from overheating and damaging itself. The coolant circulating through your car’s engine ensures that this delicate balance is maintained.
Coolant is a mixture of water and ethylene glycol—a substance that lowers the freezing point of water—and prevents rust from forming on metal parts inside your engine. If you have enough coolant in your vehicle, it should be visible when you check under the hood: if there’s not enough coolant or if there are clumps or chunks floating around in it, then you may want to get it checked out by a mechanic because this can indicate contamination.
Engine bearing failure
One of the most common engine problems is engine bearing failure. This can be diagnosed via a rattling or knocking sound coming from your engine, and it's often indicative of worn-out bearings. These are usually not expensive to replace, but they do require some time and effort on your part to get everything back together again. If you notice that your car is making this kind of noise when you start it up, check for oil leaks around the front end of your vehicle—this could indicate that there's a leak somewhere in the valve cover gasket or another seal between components inside the engine compartment. Leaking oil combined with overheating could cause damage over time and lead to premature failure.
Blown head gasket
If you're experiencing any of the following symptoms, it's likely that your car's head gasket is damaged. This is a very common problem and can be detected by looking for:
- Engine overheating. If you are experiencing an engine temperature that's higher than normal (refer to your owner's manual), it may be due to a blown head gasket or other cooling system problems.
- Oil leaks coming from either side of the engine block or underneath where there should not be any oil leaking out of the vehicle at all.
- White smoke coming out of the exhaust when starting up your car after sitting overnight or longer without use; this is one way that mechanics can detect a blown head gasket as well as other issues with carburetors and fuel injectors.
Dirty or clogged fuel injectors
Fuel injectors are part of the fuel delivery system. They deliver fuel to the engine. If your vehicle's engine is not getting enough fuel, you may experience a misfire or rough running.
A dirty or clogged injector can cause your engine to run poorly and even stall completely at times. To check if your car's injectors are causing problems, you can use an OBD-II scanner tool (if you have one). If your car is stalling or running poorly, it could be due to a dirty or clogged fuel injector(s). You should consider having them cleaned by a mechanic if this is suspected as the cause of poor performance.
Faulty spark plugs
Malfunctioning spark plugs cause engine problems including, misfires, hard starts, reduced gas mileage, rough idling, and lack of acceleration. Driving with a faulty spark plug will be difficult because the engine might fail to function.
- Turn off the engine, take out the spark plugs, clean them with a wire brush and reinstall them. If they're not corroded or burnt out, that should help a lot!
- If all else fails…buy new spark plugs! Make sure which ones you need before installing them; these things are very specific for different engines and vehicles.
Because EVs run on battery power and have fewer internal fluids, they will not be subject to oil changes and do not undergo the amount of maintenance required for ICE vehicles. Annual tax and maintenance costs are estimated to be 49% lower than for ICE models
ICEs have been widely used for over a century—but as we move towards renewable energy, EVs are going to become more efficient and beneficial. In turn, automakers are going to focus much more on EVs, making them more accessible to everyone. For now, we can only speculate, but we can all agree that EVs have a bright future.
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