Author Archives: American Engine Installations

Is a remanufactured engine safe?

close-up of a car engine

Choosing Remanufactured Engines

When the engine on a car has served its purpose and is done, it doesn’t always have to go to the junkyard. There are mechanic shops that take those worn-out engines and remanufacture them. What is a remanufactured engine? And what does it mean to have a “remanufactured engine”?  Think of it as recycling! 

A remanufactured engine is when the original engine or one similar has been restored to ‘like-new’ condition, as close to the original as possible. A thorough inspection of the engine is done by a mechanic. Then any parts that are damaged or worn out are replaced with parts that have been re-machined to the original specs, or new ones that are as close to the original specs as possible.

How do you remanufacture an engine?

A remanufactured engine is like having a new engine built. There are standard procedures with quality control and factory testing performed before the remanufactured engine is released. The mechanic team will start with an engine core that is undamaged and proceed with the following steps:

  • Thoroughly and carefully clean the engine 
  • Measure the engine to assure it is at OEM specifications
  • Replace all damaged or worn components with new parts, including:
  • Pistons
  • Rings
  • Valves
  • Lifters

Does remanufacturing an engine reset the mileage?

An engine swap, engine replacement, or remanufactured engine will not reset the mileage on your vehicle. The mileage calculates all the components of a car.  It is illegal to reset the mileage on an odometer because it should always reflect the age of the entire car accurately. 

Is a remanufactured engine the same as a new engine?

A properly done remanufactured engine by a reputable mechanic or garage should be as good, in some cases, better than a new engine. A reputable mechanic or garage will typically offer a 1-year warranty on the work done when driven properly. 

This means, that if you decide to take the car down a quarter-mile track to race and blow the engine, the warranty is null and void. For the cost factor, a remanufactured engine is less expensive than a rebuilt engine. 

Often a remanufactured engine is built from parts that are sourced from other engines that have broken down and have been “reworked”. They are then thoroughly inspected before being installed on an engine that is being remanufactured. 

How long will a remanufactured engine last?

The typical warranty on a remanufactured engine is 1-year or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. Specialty remanufactured engines will come with a 36-month warranty and unlimited miles.

Is remanufactured the same as refurbished?

No, there are differences, and it is important to realize those differences so you get what you pay for.  The general description of a remanufactured engine is: 

The mechanic or technician working on the remanufacturing will check the mechanical tolerances and restore them with either re-machined components or installing the needed inserts to restore the engine to the original manufacturer’s mechanical tolerances so that the engine meets the standard OEM durability, quality, and tolerances. Those parts include: 

  • New pistons
  • Connecting rods
  • Rings
  • Bearings
  • Camshafts
  • Lifters
  • Oil pump 

All bearing surfaces are restored and the engine’s upper half, including the cylinder heads, are rebuilt. The only part that remains the same with a remanufactured engine is the block if it is in a rebuildable condition.

A rebuilt engine is cleaned and inspected, and any broken, damaged, or worn parts are replaced. Any parts that are still serviceable are reused if they are within the manufacturer’s suggested acceptable wear limits. The rebuilt components’ quality can vary between engine and engine parts rebuilders and will typically have a limited warranty.

Before an engine rebuild begins, the components are typically equally worn condition. After an engine rebuild, some of the components will be new and others will be the used ones that were on the engine. It is important to understand that the used components, should function properly even if they are somewhat worn. 

Are refurbished engines good?

Experienced car buffs will say that a rebuilt engine is often better than the original factory-installed engine. They are a reliable and more cost-effective choice when needing engine repair or replacement. 

Is a remanufactured engine better than a used engine?

Yes, it has been refurbed with new or qualified used parts and components. A used engine is used. You get all the mileage previous owners have put on the engine. 

close-up of a car engine being cleaned

Get Your Motor Running … 

Is an engine replacement worth it? If the engine of your current car is starting to have a lot of problems that require small repairs or replacement parts, it may be time to either buy a new car or have a new engine installed. You need to calculate the amount of money you’re putting into your current car versus the cost of a new engine, rebuilt engine, or remanufactured engine.

Is a head gasket worth fixing?

close-up of a smoking car engine

What is a Head Gasket?

The head gasket is important to make your car engine run. It is highly unlikely that you will ever see it though, hopefully. This gasket is ‘sandwiched’ between the cylinder head and the engine block, this small but vital component seals the process of internal combustion, which allows the coolant and oil to flow throughout the engine, keeping it cool and lubricated.

So, if your mechanic tells you that you’ve “blown your head gasket”, you’re not going anywhere until you schedule head gasket repair, which usually requires replacing it. Okay, so it is important to the car engine, but what is it?

Not only does the head gasket seals the combustion chamber, but it also allows the engine to produce the power needed for the car to move. The head gasket also keeps the harmful gases a car forms from exiting the combustion chamber, routing them through the exhaust. 

Does a blown head gasket mean you need a new engine?

It depends on how much damage the blown head gasket caused, i.e., how much did you drive it without getting a head gasket repair job? If your mechanic advises you that any of the following have occurred, then the engine is beyond any head gasket repair. The following are things that can happen when the head gasket is blown, and the answer to “Can Head Gaskets be repaired?” is stated with each of these examples:  

Damaged Cylinder Head 

A damaged cylinder head is visible with cracks, tunneling, or warping. A cracked cylinder head is usually nothing more than a boat anchor. A cylinder head with tunneling may be repairable, but more often it is not. And a warped cylinder has a chance of the mechanic being able to repair it if is not too severely warped. In short form, a damaged cylinder head will require a new engine.

Damaged Engine Block 

A blown head gasket repair probably won’t be possible if the engine block is damaged, but it takes a bit more damage than the cylinder because of the materials used in making engine blocks. It will depend on how much of the surface area of the engine block is damaged in determining if the head gasket repair is possible. 

Damaged Bearing 

When the head gasket blows, excessive heat is generated inside the engine, and that causes damage to the bearing. If you check the oil and it is like chocolate milk or watery oil, then the bearings could be beyond repair, which could make a head gasket repair improbable. 

How much does it cost to repair a head gasket?

A head gasket repair job can range between $1,000 and $2,000 or more. It isn’t a matter of the gasket cost, but the work it takes to get to the gasket. When the mechanic tells you that a head gasket repair is possible, it isn’t a matter or installing a new gasket. 

The engine may have to be removed or the top half of the engine removed. There are several components attached to the engine that must be disconnected or removed to get to the gasket. The old gasket is removed and thrown away, scraping any residue is required before placing a new gasket. 

Is it better to repair a head gasket or replace the engine?

If none of the other extending areas we mentioned are damaged, a head gasket replacement job is the better choice financially. While it cost upward of $2,000, buying a whole new engine is much more expensive. 

Can you drive with a blown head gasket?

If you have a leaking head gasket, it is better not to drive the car any further than to the mechanic. Depending on how bad and where it is leaking will determine how far you can drive the car. You may not get out of the driveway, or you may be able to drive it for months before being forced to get a head gasket repair job. It’s a luck of the draw! 

view under the hood of a new car engine

It All Comes To A Head!

Okay, we know the importance of the unseen engine part. It is understood that driving your car when you know the head gasket is leaking isn’t recommended. But, what causes a head gasket to break?

The most common reason is the engine was overheated, usually because of the lack of coolant. The lack of coolant is most often due to a leak from a hose or connection. 

Head gaskets also will wear down after a while, especially on an aluminum engine. When aluminum heats up, it expands quicker than other types of metal, and this can weaken the head gasket out faster. 

Some indicators that your car engine may need head gasket repairing are: 

  • Engine Overheating 
  • Blue, Grey, or White smoke coming from the tailpipe or from the engine
  • Engine has a Loss of Power 
  • The Oil is Discolored

Keep all this mind to help keep your engine in the best shape possible.

Is it worth replacing the engine in a car?

How long does an engine last these days? Like anything, the quality of the engine to start with will make an impact along with the maintenance and upkeep you provide. Another factor that impacts a car is how you drive the car. If you’re 100mph from the minute you pull out of the driveway, you probably won’t have a long of a lifespan than if you drive in normal conditions and basic style. 

There was a time when you bought something like a toaster, washing machine, a vehicle, or most anything else, it lasted forever. Over the years, things aren’t made as well as they were, or do we just not have the patience, skills, or time to repair them? It is just easier to replace things, like a car engine replacement

On one hand, we hear “Cars are made better than they ever were.” On the other hand, we hear “They just don’t make them like they used to.” Typically, those statements are referring to the engine, and no, they don’t make them like they used to, and because they are made different, in many ways, that makes them better. 

Cars from the 1930s and up until the past 10 years did not have a computer chip that told you when the tires needed air. While not all cars have that feature, it has become a welcome new technology many of us appreciate, especially since gas stations are all self-serve and nobody comes out to check the air in your tires or the oil in the engine. This brings us the need decision if having a car engine replacement vs new car is the better option. 

Before you get to that point though, when do you know you have a problem? What are some signs of engine problems? A car engine is complicated and requires consistent and regular maintenance and upkeep to get the most power and longest life possible. The following are eight indications that you may need to be considering a car engine replacement: 

Check Engine Light: When this light is illuminated, it is the car’s way of telling you there is a problem with the engine or a component that works with the engine. Have a professional mechanic inspect the engine and run a diagnostic test that will read the sensor. This will narrow down, even pinpoint the problem.   

Power Loss: A gas-powered vehicle has an internal combustion engine. There is a four-stroke combustion cycle that converts the gas into power that makes the car move. When a car loses all its power, it can be an interruption within those four strokes of the combustion process. Good chance the engine is gone at this point, but a mechanic can better ascertain this situation and advise you if a car engine replacement is necessary. 

Gas Mileage Decrease: There are several factors that can affect your gas mileage. From worn-out tires to bad spark plugs. However, if all these things are in good order and a tank of gas isn’t getting you as far as it should, have your mechanic run an engine diagnostic test. This will pinpoint the problem and hopefully, a quick adjustment or repair is all you need, not a car engine replacement. 

Noises: A car engine that is backfiring, hissing, knocking, popping, and spitting is in distress. Some noises are completely normal, but there is a level of abnormality that indicates a problem with the combustion flow. You need your car examined by a mechanic, sooner than later. 

Stalled Engine: A car with a manual transmission will stall from time to time depending on the speed between the clutch pedal and gas pedal. While this can be frustrating, in most cases, it is normal. A car with an automatic transmission, however, shouldn’t stall. So, if your car has an automatic transmission and is stalling, aka dying, then your car needs to be inspected by a mechanic. It could be something minor or you may need a car engine replacement. 

Odors and Smells:  Car exhaust will have some odor, but it the odor is powerful and obnoxious, it needs to be checked by a mechanic.  

Engine Doesn’t Turn Off: This is a common problem with cars that have a high-performance engine, typically because the octane isn’t right for the engine. It can also be a problem with the carburetor or solenoid.  A mechanic can check your car out and determine the problem. 

Rough Running: A car engine that is idling or running rough may need a basic tune-up, replace the sparkplugs, or bad gas. If none of these things fixes the problem, have a mechanic check the engine. 

How long will a car last with a new engine?

As we said at the start of this article, like anything, there are several factors that will determine the lifespan of a new engine too. The quality of the new engine, the quality of the installation, your maintenance and upkeep routine, i.e., oil changes, filter changes, etc.  And your driving style and the conditions you drive the car will impact the lifespan of a new engine. 

The rule of thumb is you should get as long of a lifespan with the new engine as you did with the original engine.  If the original engine lasted 200,000 miles, a car engine replacement should last 200,000 miles. 

How much will it cost to replace my engine?

The make of the engine will be a determining factor, but for basic pricing guidelines, a new 4-cylinder engine is around $5,000, a V6 engine is around $6,000, and a V8 engine is around $8,000. These are basic engine estimate and doesn’t include any labor or upgrades. 

What is included in an engine replacement?

A new engine replacement is referred to as a “crate engine”, meaning it comes from the manufacturer in a crate. Included in this crate engine are the following components: 

  • Engine block
  • Crankshaft
  • Cylinder heads
  • Camshaft
  • Pistons
  • Valves

There are additional things needed like fuel filter, oil filter and oil, hoses, lines, wire, and clamps, along with bolts and nuts.  A car engine replacement is basically heart surgery for a car. 

Is it cheaper to rebuild an engine or replace it?

A car engine rebuild will be cheaper in most cases than buying a new engine, as much as half as much! However, there are times when an engine is so worn that a car engine replacement is the better solution. 

When should your engine be repaired?

You can look at a car engine replacement or repair like a new HVAC system, refrigerator, or other household appliance.  At 10 years old, new is the better option for longevity.  However, you may not be in a place where buying a new car is feasible, and in that case, pay the money for repairs until you can afford a car payment.

Closing Question – Will insurance cover engine replacement?

Yes and no. If the engine is simply worn out, no, your car insurance will not pay for a car engine replacement.  If the engine is damaged in an accident and you have full coverage, then yes, a car engine replacement would be paid for – unless – the insurance company deems the value of the car not worth the cost. Then, the insurance will pay toward a completely new car. 

Can I put engine parts in the dishwasher?

various car engine parts on a yellow background

Understanding Your Car’s Engine

To make a car function, there is the engine, tires and wheels, and the transmission, along with several other components. What most of us don’t realize are the many car engine parts within an engine that makes it function. How many parts are there in a car engine? In broad terms, three. 

Yes, there are three key car engine parts, with many more parts that make those parts work. The three key car engine parts are: 

1. The cylinder head: This where the fuel goes into the engine chamber and exhaust gas exits. Within this key car engine parts are more key components like the camshafts, valves, and spark plugs.

2. The engine block: This is where all the combustion action happens with other key car engine parts like the combustion chamber, crankshaft, and pistons.

3. The oil pump: This is within the lower section of the car engine parts and where the oil filter and pan are located. 

What are the parts of a car engine and how do I identify engine parts?

Within the engine block, there are more car engine parts, and that is what we are going to discuss here. With the list we’re going provide, you should be able to identify the car engine parts: 

Engine Block

The main car engine part is the engine block itself. This is the key part of the entire engine and may be aluminum or iron. The engine block has different holes where the cylinders are located for oil and water to flow to cool and lubricate the engine block. 

Within the engine block, the camshaft, crankshaft, and pistons are located with 4 to 12 cylinders. Depending on the make and model of the car, the cylinders are inline, flat, or V-shaped. All other car engine parts are bolted to this and inside the car engine block is where the action is going on.

Piston

A piston is a disk like piece that is enclosed in a cylinder and the piston rings make it gas-tight. The disk moves up and down inside the cylinder with the gas as the cylinder contracts and expands. The piston helps the heat energy transform into mechanical work by moving up and down when the spark plugs fire them, making them compress the air and fuel mixture.

This reciprocating energy is then converted to rotary motion, transferring the tires by the transmission as powered by driveshaft. The pistons are a car engine part that rotates 1250 rpm up and down 2500 a minute. Piston rings are inside the piston and generate compression while reducing friction with the cylinder’s constant rubbing. 

Cylinder Head

The cylinder head is located above the cylinders on top of the engine block and closes the cylinder. This forms the combustion chamber, and a head gasket seals this joint to keep the gasses contained.

There are several interior car engine parts inside the cylinder head, including: 

  • Valve springs
  • Valves
  • Lifters
  • Pushrods
  • Rocker arms

The camshafts inside the cylinder head control passages, allowing intake air to flow in the cylinders as they stroke up and down, then the exhaust passes during the exhaust stroke. 

Crankshaft

This is a moving car engine part that transforms the linear motion of the piston into rotating motion. The pistons are connected with piston rods and the crankshaft is mounted inside the engine block at the bottom. 

Within the crankshaft, are connected to the pistons with piston rods, operating like a jack-in-the-box. The crankshaft turns the pistons, moving them up and down into a reciprocal motion with the engine speed, converting the energy into rotation.

Camshaft

The camshaft is a metal rotating car engine part object that contains pointed cams. Those cams convert rotational motion to reciprocal motion and operate the intake and exhaust valves by mechanically controlling the ignition systems and early versions of electric motor speed controllers.

Each make and model of a vehicle will have a different type of camshaft, some are found inside the car engine block or inside the cylinder heads. Many vehicles made today, the camshaft is inside the cylinder heads and are referred to as DOHC (Dual Overhead Camshaft) or SOHC (Single Overhead Camshaft). 

The camshaft’s purpose is to regulate the valved opening and closing timing and transfer the rotary motion from the crankshaft to a motion of up and down with the lifters, so the pushrods, rockers, and valves move. 

Timing Belt or Chain

The timing belt or chain, an essential car engine part that synchronizes the crankshaft and camshaft rotation, allowing the engine’s valves to open and close with cylinder’s intake and exhaust strokes. This is one of the many car engine parts that is critical in preventing the piston from hitting the valves. 

Engine Valves

The engine valves are one of the mechanical car engine parts components that regulate the air, exhaust gas flow, and the fuel, as the engine operates. This function happens as the valves are pushed by the cam into the cylinder against the spring. This opens the valve, allowing gas to flow, and then the valve shuts and the pressure within the combustion chamber stays sealed.

Oil Pan

The oil pan is another one of the vital car engine parts that keeps the lubrication within the engine. Motor oil circulates through the engine to reduce friction and keep everything working smoothly. The oil pan keeps the motor oil contained and is made of metal, attaching to metal with a gasket. 

The list of car engine parts include the combustion chamber located inside the cylinder, the intake manifold that distributes airflow within the engine, the exhaust manifold that is usually a cast iron or stainless steel and carries the exhaust gas. 

Additional car engine parts include the intake and exhaust valves, spark plugs, connecting rod, piston rings, gudgeon pin, cam, and flywheel. A crankcase, flywheel, and several gaskets are needed for connecting many of the car engine parts to the engine or other car engine parts. 

Can you paint engine parts?

Yes, once you have cleaned them of any corrosion, dirt, dust, and rust. For most car enthusiasts that paint the engine, it is on an engine stand. If not, mask off any areas or parts that you don’t want painted with painter tape. Small parts can be painted by laying them on cardboard and paint separately, using cinder blogs or wood to raise them up and paint the underside. Always use enamel paint made for high heat. 

How do you remove corrosion from aluminum engine parts?

Aluminum is a type of metal, and this element will have many changes over its lifetime as part of an engine. It is popular in the auto industry because it is lightweight and bends easily. It also is ideal for conducting electricity and heat. 

Most corrosion on aluminum car engine parts can be removed by mixing distilled water with white vinegar. Gently agitate the corrosion with a mild scrub pad and for stubborn areas, a wire brush may be needed, using caution not to “get into” the aluminum. 

How do you remove rust from engine parts?

This will depend on the part itself. Many car engine parts are made of strong metal; you can use a Brillo pad or steel wool for cleaning. Some parts you may be able to remove and use a grinder to remove the rust and for other parts, you may need to place them in a chemical bath or use electrolysis to remove rust. However, putting them in a dishwasher is not recommended – more care is needed than that.

What can I use to clean engine parts?

After covering all electrical car engine parts, you can use an OTC degreaser available at any auto parts store, the same places where you can buy small engine parts. You can also use a basic household dish detergent. Spray the entire engine compartment with either one, completely and thoroughly then rinse with clear water. Some auto car wash stations offer a degreaser that can be used as well. You should make sure you have a back-up ride to get home in case something electrical gets wet. 

What parts should you cover when washing an engine?

The car engine parts that should be covered include any electrical components that can be sensitive to water. Those parts include: 

  • The battery
  • The spark plug and spark plug wires
  • The Engine control unit

You can use plastic bags to cover these electrical components, holding the plastic in place with masking tape. If your car has an exposed air intake , this should be covered with plastic too. 

close-up of a car engine

In Conclusion

There are several videos available online that can walk you through the process of removing corrosion and rust from car engine parts including the engine block. There are also videos on how to paint these parts and that can give you details of all engine car parts, like what they do and where they are located. But – again – don’t put any of these parts in the dishwasher. More care is needed than that.

What are the benefits of buying a refurbished engine?

close-up of car engine

No Need to Buy a New Car… Yet

Not everyone wants to buy a new car every year – or two years, or three years. There are some people that will actually keep a car “until the wheels fall off”, including keeping the same car after the engine blows up or quits working. These folks have a refurbished engine installed, or else do the job themselves, and they can typically drive that car another five to ten years, or even longer. 

What is a refurbished engine? 

And what is replaced when rebuilding an engine? A refurbished engine refers to when the mechanic determines what engine part(s) is having a problem and replaces just those parts. The overall general wear and tear of the engine aren’t taken into consideration with a refurbished engine. Therefore, the mechanic doesn’t take the entire engine apart, nor do they clean it or completely inspect the engine. 

For an easy and fast way to get your car back on the road after having mechanical problems, getting a refurbished engine job is the way to go. However, that is only going to address any immediate problems you’re having. If there are underlying issues that haven’t surfaced yet, you could find yourself back at the garage. 

What does rebuilding an engine do?

Probably more than you realize! A rebuilt engine will have improved gas mileage with fewer pollutants emitted. Energy is saved by rebuilding an engine because there is less going to the landfill. Once the rebuilt is completed, with proper routine maintenance, the engine will last as long as an engine in a brand new car. 

Think of the money you’ll be saving with a rebuilt engine too! Your other options include a new car – with car payments and higher insurance. That’s something that can definitely cost a pretty penny. 

Does rebuilding an engine make it like new?

And are rebuilt engines reliable? In fact, a rebuilt engine is often a superior engine compared to what is in cars today. There are better parts available, and not just what the manufacturer’s factory issues. An engine rebuild is often done after some parts on new cars have proven to be faulty. The new replacement parts have gone through design changes to make them more dependable and reliable than the original engine parts.

Does rebuilding an engine reset the mileage?

No, it does not. The mileage on a car’s odometer is for the total miles on the entire car, every component, from top to bottom, inside and out. In fact, it is illegal to reset a car’s odometer. Why? What’s so important about the mileage on the other components? 

The mileage readout tells the full story about your car and the hundreds of components inside it. Yes, the engine is the main component, and it is the most expensive component. However, each component has a number of miles it is good for, and any buyer of the car should know the truth of the age and mileage on each component. 

So, what are all these important components? There are electrical and mechanical components, some needing maintenance and replacement over time, which will give them a new beginning. If the mileage were changed on the odometer because of a new engine, these parts could miss getting the attention they need at critical mileage points. Those important components are:

  • Brakes
  • Differentials
  • Steering
  • Suspension
  • Transmission

Work that needs to be done at different points in a car’s mileage would include your oil and filter change, the brake fluid flush, transmission flush, and similar jobs. 

How much does a refurbished engine cost?

Pricing will vary from car to car and the type of engine within the car. The average pricing comes in a  wide range between $1,000.00 and up to $4,000.00. A refurbished engine is the same as a remanufactured engine because it is bringing the existing engine up to the level the engine was when the car was new. Many mechanics that focus on this type of work will either have access to the blueprints from the factory or know where they can get them. 

Is it worth getting a rebuilt engine?

As your car engine wears and tears, and you know it is time to do something, a rebuilt engine, a refurbished engine, or a new car all come to mind. Whether you want a new car payment is a personal budget matter and obligation. In addition to the cost and the time to rebuild or refurbish engines, there are other considerations to make. 

The time refers to how long are you going to be without a car while waiting on a rebuilt engine or refurbished engine. Do you have another means of transportation? Then there is the cost factor, which a mechanic can give you a rough estimate of, pretty close to the last penny in most cases. So, is a rebuilt engine worthwhile? Here are the pros and cons to consider: 

The Pros

  • A rebuilt engine doesn’t require the engine to be completely disassembled and cleaned. This makes the work faster and the cost cheaper. 
  • Part failure is minimal to none with engine rebuilding because the parts aren’t removed until needed.

The Cons

  • A rebuild will only replace the problem parts, so the lifespan of a car engine doesn’t extend. 
  • The debris and grime that accumulates over time is not cleared away
  • The normal wear and tear from your regular driving won’t be updated or replaced, so all components not replaced still have the same mileage.
  • A rebuilt engine doesn’t come with any warranty.
mechanic working on a car engine

In Closing 

So, what is the difference between rebuilt and remanufactured engines? A rebuilt engine is only going to include replacing the part or parts that are giving your car problems. A remanufactured, or refurbished engine is bringing the current engine back up to standards when the engine was new at the factor. If you’d like to learn a bit more about what you can expect with a refurbished engine, you can get in touch with us by calling __PHONE__.

Can a high mileage engine be rebuilt?

Close-up of a car's odometer.

The Importance of Engine Mileage

They say cars aren’t built like they used to be, but there are some manufacturers and car buffs who will argue that point based on engine mileage. For the basic, everyday driver, an engine takes a lot of abuse with stop-and-go traffic, rapid starts and stops, and – let’s face it – a lack of appropriate engine maintenance in the case of many vehicle owners.

With those things considered, maybe they don’t build cars like they used to, and traffic is also different than it used to be. So are our expectations when it comes to cars and engine mileage. Still, the engine mileage life expectancy of cars today is 200,000 miles, which for most drivers is typically around 10 years. 

Understanding Vehicle Lifespans

The average lifespan of a car used to be a maximum of eight years while engine mileage averaged around 150,000. So maybe it isn’t that they don’t build cars like they used to, but because we sit in traffic a lot more today than we used to. The starting, stopping, and idling has factored in there as well. With that in mind, comparing engine hours vs mileage may be the better way to gauge how well an engine serves us. 

The Effect of Driving on Your Engine

Idling affects the engine hours and the wear on the engine mileage. As you sit at a red light with your engine idling, you’re not rolling the odometer. This means the mileage isn’t being clocked, yet the engine is still being used. Sixty minutes of idling is equal to 30 in engine mileage. Though we don’t typically sit at one signal light for 60 minutes, how many red lights do you sit at going to and from work and for how long? And how much does all that time add up to?

For as long as anyone can remember, measuring the condition of a car through engine mileage was the benchmark. Today, those in the automotive industry have determined that may not be the best method. Instead, using hours the car is driven may be the better judge. 

Calculating Engine Hours

Knowing how to calculate engine hours compared to engine mileage is more pertinent for fleet cars and trucks. However, as time progresses, it may become the standard for personal vehicles, too. When a vehicle is spending more time at an idle, it only makes sense that the hours:miles ratio should be used for determining a preventive maintenance schedule. The following formula can be used for calculating engine hours to engine mileage: 

  • Use the data from the engine meter in determining how many hours the engine has been operated.
  • Calculate those hours by the factor of 60 as an approximation of the engine mileage accumulated.
  • Use the formula of multiplying the engine hours x sixty equals the approximate engine mileage.

Which engine gives more mileage?

For all the clattering noise they create and though an annoyance for many of us on the roadways, a diesel-powered engine will give you better gas mileage and have a longer engine mileage between service requirements. The typical engine mileage between a diesel engine and a petroleum engine is 25% more. 

Do you know how to check engine mileage on your car? 

Well, if you have a car with a working dashboard, you can simply read the mileage from the odometer, right? But what if you purchase a used car and the odometer doesn’t work? Know how to check the mileage on a used engine by using one of these methods: 

  1. Purchase a vehicle history report.
  2. As the previous owner for the maintenance records if possible.
  3. A newer car with OnStar or other online telematic system would have engine mileage history. 
  4. The keys for cars today often have engine mileage inside the chip memory.
  5. Have your mechanic use an odometer scan tool.
  6. Take the car to an authorized dealership and have the service department perform an engine mileage check with their computerized tools.

What is the mileage for an engine overhaul?

The newer engines made today can last over a million miles before the engine mileage shows enough wear and tear for a rebuild. However, driving habits can affect this. Remember how the starting, stopping, and idling, with the idling add up with the engine mileage. 

With those factors considered, an engine overhaul may be needed at around 750,000 miles. Once the engine overhaul is completed, you can expect to get another 10,000 engine miles of driving and/or idling time. 

View under the hood of a car engine.

Conclusion

Once your car engine mileage has reached the point of a rebuild, should you choose that method instead of trading the car in for a newer model, your mechanic should know how to reset engine mileage. This enables you, or the next owner to know when the next engine rebuild is needed. When purchasing a used car, it is important that you know whether the engine mileage of the car is on the original engine or a rebuilt engine. If you aren’t buying the car from the original owner, use the methods we’ve described to ascertain the engine mileage. Meanwhile, if you’re interested in an engine with low engine mileage in Marietta and Atlanta, GA reach out to American Engine Installations at __PHONE__.

What You Should Know About Engine Replacement

Up Close Image of an Engine

Is it worth it to replace an engine?

When your vehicle’s engine goes bad, it can be difficult to decide whether you should replace your engine or purchase a new vehicle altogether. There are plenty of reasons you may consider engine replacement, whether your current engine has failed or you are looking to keep your vehicle running in optimal condition. But how do you know whether it’s the right choice? In many cases, replacing a vehicle’s engine is not just worth it, but your best option. Knowing whether an engine replacement is worth it depends on your unique situation and making the right choice can save you lots of time and money. Call the American Engine Installations team at (404) 289-9997 to find out whether engine replacement in Marietta and Atlanta, GA is right for your vehicle, or read on for more info.

Reasons to Replace an Engine

When you’re trying to decide whether it’s best to replace an engine, there are a few things you will want to consider. Thinking about the following can help you decide whether replacing your engine is the right move.

  • Is your vehicle in good condition otherwise?
  • Has your engine failed or do you want to replace it before it fails?
  • Do you want to extend the life of your vehicle?
  • How much might you save on insurance, taxes, and other costs?

Does replacing an engine reset mileage?

One of the most common questions people have when considering engine replacement is whether it will reset their vehicle’s odometer. It’s important to remember that an odometer is essentially a record of all a vehicle’s components and not just the engine. This means replacing an engine won’t reset its mileage and you’ll still have an accurate record of everything it’s been through.

Is it bad if a car has a new engine?

Another thing many people want to know is what kind of impact a new engine will have on a vehicle. There are pros and cons to replacing a car engine no matter what, but a new engine can offer a host of benefits. These include boosting a vehicle’s performance. After all, a new engine won’t have the same wear and tear. This is also why a new engine can have a significant impact on what a vehicle is worth, raising its overall value.

How many miles will a rebuilt engine last?

You can expect the engine in an average vehicle to last for about 10 years, or about 50 to 200,000 miles. So what can you expect when you’re replacing it with a rebuilt engine? Though a rebuilt engine may not always have the same lifespan as the original, it can last for upwards of 100,000 miles. This can double the overall lifespan of your vehicle, and with regular maintenance, you can help it last even longer.

What happens when you put a new engine in your car?

Finding out you need to replace your car engine can be stressful. In addition to the cost of this repair, you may not know what effect replacing the engine will have on your vehicle. After all, the engine lies at the heart of almost everything your car does. Fortunately, if you choose the right replacement engine, you can see plenty of benefits. 

Replacing a car engine will likely boost its performance, but that’s not all this kind of repair can do. Among the biggest perks of replacing an engine is making your vehicle more cost-efficient to use overall, as you can be more certain of its reliability. Most newer engines are also more environmentally friendly, which can make your car greener to use.

How long does engine replacement take?

Going without your vehicle is always tough, and replacing an engine is a challenging task. However, the average engine replacement doesn’t have to leave you without a car for days. Plenty of things can change how long it takes to replace an engine, such as whether other components will need to be replaced. Overall, you can expect it to take a day or two, or about twice that time with more challenging jobs.

Will insurance cover engine replacement?

Trying to find out what your car insurance will and won’t cover is always tricky. This is true even with specific jobs such as an engine replacement. Generally, car insurance doesn’t cover repair jobs, especially when they are caused by everyday wear and tear. However, in some cases it may be able to cover the engine replacement cost depending on the cause of the damage and type of insurance you have.

How affordable is engine replacement in a car?

Replacing a car engine can be costly, but so is buying a brand new vehicle. In many cases, people find the option of replacing an engine much more affordable. Taking a look at a few factors such as the complexity of the job ahead can help give you a better idea of how much replacing the engine will cost and if it’s best for your needs.

Smiling Woman Starts Her Car

Finding the Best Engine Replacement Near Me

When you find your vehicle in need of a new engine, you can be certain of getting the best quality work from the professionals at American Engine Installations. We offer engine replacement in Marietta and Atlanta, GA for most makes and models so you can get your car back on the road. Set up your appointment for engine replacement by calling us today at (404) 289-9997.

How to Overhaul A Motor

car motor

What is motor overhaul?

It is common knowledge that without a motor, a car cannot be driven or operated in any manner under its own power. So, when the motor is worn out and doesn’t have the  power it used to, what do you do?  Not as much with the new cars of today, there was a time when a motor “wore out”, the owner, or a mechanic would do a motor overhaul

To appreciate and have a better understand a motor in overhaul process, let’s review just how does car motor work? Car motor or engine is an internal-combustion operation, a heat engine that converts energy from fuel into mechanical torque. 

There are pistons are housed in cylinders inside the car motor. They work like your legs do riding a bicycle, moving up and down. The pistons are connected to a crankshaft with rods and when they go up and down, they spin that  crankshaft, giving the motor power. There are a lot of smaller details to this working, but we’ll save that for another time, keeping our focus on the process of a motor overhaul today. 

Mechanical things naturally will wear out, give us a limited lifetime, and a car motor is nothing different. With the amount of wear and tear of a car motor, overhaul is one to get a longer lifespan and minimize the small repairs that can be inconvenient and expensive. 

A motor overhaul entails taking the engine apart and replace the faulty, old, worn out  components. It isn’t creating a new engine, but a motor overhaul will extend the life of the motor to keep from getting a new car payment. The process of a motor overhaul is somewhat complex and time consuming, with each engine type taking a different amount of time with different complexities. 

If you’re taking your car to a mechanic for a motor overhaul, choose one that a good reputation and will deliver the results you expect and need. The basic steps of a motor overhaul consist of the following: 

Step One: The motor may be removed or simply lifted up from the car. 

Step Two: The motor is disassembled. This entails separating the motor from components like the compressor and pumps. 

Step Three: All bolts, nuts, shims, and other engine hardware are removed.

Step Four: Finally, the rotors are removed and then the engine is ready to be inspected. The experienced mechanic will do a visual inspection. With all the computerized technology available today in the mechanic industry, nothing beats motor overhaul experience of a trained mechanic. They can often see things with their eyes, ears, and nose than technology can find.  A seasoned mechanic knows to observe things like dust and moisture that could be the problem, or a burning smell as the dismantle the motor. The remaining motor overhaul checklist continues as follows:

Step Five: The mechanic will rotate the shafts to check the bearings.

Step Six:  The mechanic will check the ports to make sure the engine has been cooling.

Step Seven: The motor  is cleaned, and all faulty components are repaired or replaced. 

Step Eight: The motor is placed under a heat lamp to dry the inside and remove all moisture.

Step Nine: As the mechanic reassembles the motor overhaul, they will lubricate the motor to enhance the motor functioning. 

Step Ten: The mechanic will put the motor through a series of testing that ensures them it is done. 

What is a car motor mount?

The typical engine mount is made of rubber. This keeps them from clanging against the metal car frame. Some are liquid filled to reduce any vibrations and some are vacuum-controlled that automatically dampen those vibrations and sounds.

There are different mounts to a car engine, and during a motor overhaul, they are typically replaced. The engine mount doe exactly what the name says: It keeps the engine in place. Then there is the transmission mounts that keep the engine and transmission bolted together so the engine or transmission can’t move. 

How to clean car motor?

Because there are many electrical components, mechanical parts, belts and more, most people aren’t sure about cleaning the motor. Yes,  a lot can go wrong if not done carefully, but the manual process isn’t as complicated as you may think. 

The more a car is driven, the more it will pick up dirt, grime, and such while it accumulates grease and oily residue. These things make a car engine look dirty and the car motor efficiency begins to diminish. Cleaning a car engine once a year will extend the life and keep it running better, giving you better gas mileage.  The following steps for a manual cleaning can be completed within a couple of hours: 

  • Make sure the engine is cool before you begin and avoid spraying any water on the engine in attempt to cool it. That can lead cracking and warping the engine. 
  • Open the hood and while the engine cools, use plastic bags to cover the electrical components. This includes the air intake system, the alternator, and the distributor. Tape the bags closed. 
  • Disconnect the battery terminals and remove the battery. 
  • Apply  the cleaner and follow instructions. Typically most instruct to let the cleaner sit for 3 to 5 minutes so that it penetrate the dirt, grease, grime, and oil. 
  • With a non-metallic brush, agitate the dirt, grease, grime, and oil built up on the motor. 
  • Rinse and clear by spraying water over the engine, brushing the dirt, grease, grime, and oil away as you spray. 
  • Once you have completed this, remove plastic bag coverings, folding them inward to avoid any water dripping or running out on the electrical components.
  • Using clean towels or an air compressor, dry the engine thoroughly.
car engine

Exactly what is the difference between car motor vs engine? 

Motor is defined as a machine that provides motive power for a car or other mechanism that has moving parts. Engine is defined as a machine with parts that move and converts that  power into motion. Call __PHONE__ today for your car motor overhaul needs in Marietta and Atlanta, GA.

Can you still drive a car with a blown head gasket?

head gasket engine

Can you have a blown head gasket with no symptoms?

It is common knowledge that car engines overheat in the summer, but what many people don’t realize, they overheat in the winter too. When a car overheats too much, it can destroy the head gasket, which allows water or coolant to leak into the oil. Then the oil for the engine is watered down and more severe problems develop. 

Before we start a question and answer series here, let’s review what a head gasket is first.  The head gasket is just that, a gasket that is placed between the cylinder head and the engine block. This component seals the internal combustion process to allow the coolant and oil to travel in their respective paths throughout the engine for cooling and lubricating. 

When a mechanic tells you that you have blown your head gasket, that means this gasket, sandwiched between the cylinder head and engine block is busted. Water is now leaking into the oil or head gaskets are leaking oil into the water unless it is caught right away. 

Not really, your call will exhibit symptoms, even if mild and unnoticeable, there will be symptoms that your car’s head gaskets are blown. Okay, so how can I tell if I have a blown head gasket? There are some care makes or models that have established a reputation for blowing head gaskets. Your car may be one of those, which doesn’t mean you have a junker car or you bought a lemon. You simply just need to make sure you have the fluids check on regular basis. 

So how can you tell if your car’s head gasket is blown? A few signs would be:   

  • External coolant leaking from under the exhaust manifold.
  • Exhaust pipe is emitting white smoke. 
  • Bubbles in the radiator or overflow.
  • Engine overheating.
  • Oil is milky white.
  • Spark plugs are fouled.
  • Cooling system has low integrity.

What are the first signs of a blown head gasket?

As we mentioned earlier, the signs can be subtle for a blown head gasket, so being aware of these eight situations are your warning to get your car to the mechanic ASAP: 

  1. An external coolant or oil around the cylinder head and engine block seam. 
  2. Car engine is misfiring, mechanic testing will determine if there is a leak down of the cylinder compression.  
  3. Car misfires when started followed by white puff from the exhaust.
  4. A less obvious sign of a blown head gasket is overheating. A bad blown head gasket, you’ll see bubbles in the overflow. 
  5. Blue exhaust smoke can indicate two things: blown head gasket or other internal parts are worn like the rings, PCV system, or valve stem seals.
  6. Discolored fluids like milky white oil or oily looking water.

What causes head gaskets to fail?

A seal is formed with the head gasket between the cylinder head and engine block, and it seals the two components together under  extreme high pressure, hot combustion gases. It also seals when the engine coolant has the engine at a cold ambient temperature. 

Because there is a wide range of temperatures for a fairy large surface area, the head gasket wears and leaks develop over time.  Once a head gasket is installed, you shouldn’t be able to see it, but if you can, it means it is slipping out of its sealed position because the engine has gotten too hot from not enough coolant in the radiator. 

How long do head gaskets last?

As we mentioned, some makes of cars and some models will have a reputation of blowing head gaskets.  These aren’t rare, but they aren’t an everyday issue either.  The design and engineering of car motors and the head gasket have the intention of lasting up to 200,000 miles, what should be the lifetime of any car. 

head gasket being removed from deconstructed engine

Can head gaskets be fixed?

Well, that depends, but many times a blown head gasket can be fixed by the car owner with some great products on the shelf at your local auto parts store. These products actually allow you to create a head gasket without gaskets by creating a seal between the cylinder head and engine block. 

However, if you can’t determine if there is a blown head gasket, you’ll need a mechanic to check it for you.  There are some DIY test things you can try first, but before you try to repair your own head gasket, having a professional mechanic confirm the problem is always recommended. They have the expertise, knowledge, and skills that can tell you what’s wrong and what needs to be done to repair the car. 

One thing for certain, if you so have a blown head gasket, you don’t want to drive it any more than you absolutely have to. Some cars have aluminum engine and if you drive the car with a blown head gasket, you risk the engine overheating and for an aluminum engine, that is usually death of the engine. Call __PHONE__ today for blown head gasket repair service in Marietta and Atlanta, GA.

Can you drive a car with a bad water pump?

engine block being serviced

So, just how long do water pumps last?

Cars run on fuel right, so how important can a car water pump be? Is the car water pump and timing belt both important to a car functioning? For a person that isn’t mechanically inclined or knowledgeable, these questions aren’t surprising. 

Until they have experienced their car water pump broken, they may never understand the importance of a car water pump, or how that the car water pump and ac work together to keep the interior cool. To that end, we have answers to a few question the unknowing person may ask: 

Original equipment car water pumps can last up to 100,000 miles, even longer. The factors that can affect this is how you drive, how much you drive, and if regular professional maintenance is performed on the car. 

When it comes to replacement car water pumps, those same factors can affect the lifespan, but the quality of the water pump will affect it as well. A cheap brand of car water pump replacement may only last up to 30,000 miles, or even less before the car water pump is leaking. 

Can a water pump go out without leaking?

Anything is possible, but car water pump will usually start leaking as it begins its descent to quitting.  The car water pump’s internal mechanical has a seal on the shaft near the cooling circuit. It protects the bearings by blocking coolant from getting to the bearing assembly. 

When a car water pump is new, it is normal for the weep hole to have some seepage, this typically doesn’t last more than ten minutes of the car motor running. However, a car water pump with definite seepage drips from the weep hole or a large coolant bleed indication around the weep hole is abnormal and needs the attention of a professional mechanic. 

How do you know if your water pump is going bad?

There are a few parts of a car that when they are failing, immediate repair or replacement isn’t necessary. A car water pump isn’t one of those parts. 

The car water pump has an important role in the operation of your engine. It is what sends water and coolant to and through the engine. When the car water pump stops functioning, the consequences come fast and furious, often a total engine failure. Replacing a car water pump takes a little time, but the cost is less than replacing the entire engine.  Here are the indications of your car water pump is beginning to fail: 

  • POOR CIRCULATION: A car water pump moves the coolant and water through the radiator then around the engine, dissipating heat buildup.  Because there are metal parts connected within a car engine that move rapidly, they generate a lot of heat. When there is too much heat, the engine parts may fuse together, melt, or become warped, in other words, they are structurally compromised. The drive belt pulls the car water pump which make an internal impeller work that keeps the coolant and water circulating.
  • LEAKING: As we mentioned above, a leaking car water pump is an indication that the water pump is about to or already is failing. 
  • ICK: Gunk will build up around a car water pump when it has been leaking slowly over time. When you notice trails of coolant coming from the car water pump, or a gelled-like substance of coolant or rust around the car water pump exterior, you need to have it checked by a mechanic. 
  • NOISEY: A whining noise when you accelerate that gets louder with the acceleration could be a loose belt. However, a grinding or growling sound at the engine front is usually a bad bearing. This bearing could be in the car water pump and you should have your mechanic inspect the sound and determine the problem. 
  • OVERHEATING: Once the car water pump has failed, the engine overheats. Your car is now to the point of getting towed to your mechanic. Stop driving it as soon as it overheads or a ‘low coolant’ light comes on. 
  • STEAMING: When smoke or steam comes from the car radiator or even from under the hood, is an indication the engine has overheated. It may have serious damage already, so pull over, call a tow truck.          
car water pump close up

What sound does a bad water pump make?

Any high-pitched sound, or an increasingly loud whining sound as you accelerate is usually coming from the car water pump. The same sound happens when a belt is loose, or the bearings are bad. No matter which of these it is, getting your car to the mechanic is a must. 

Okay, several important questions have been answered, except, how long can you drive a car without a water pump? The mechanic’s answer, don’t. However, you may be able to drive a week with a bad car water pump, or it may go out unexpectedly if you haven’t noticed any of the indications we’ve discussed in this article. Need water pump service for your car in Marietta and Atlanta, GA? Call __PHONE__ today.