The typical engine in your car is designed to operate in extreme conditions and to be as reliable as possible through many years of use. However, there are a myriad of mechanical components within and each one of these will wear out over time. This process of wear and tear can be accelerated if you don't keep up with routine maintenance and this could lead to issues with the successful operation of your vehicle. What's at risk if you've been negligent over time and what should you be looking out for that could signify big trouble?
Your engine relies on two different lubricants in order to help smooth its operation and keep the temperature in check. These are equally important and should their ability to help break down, catastrophic results could ensue.
For example, without the proper type of coolant in sufficient quantity, the engine is very likely to overheat and the ultimate outcome of this issue is going to be a cracked engine block. This happens when the internal temperature rises to an extreme level and causes the sides of the unit to crack open. If this happens, you will have to have a comprehensive engine rebuild, or possibly even a completely new motor.
You have to maintain the right amount of engine oil within and it also has to be in good condition. If you haven't changed the oil in many years, its ability to protect the motor will be seriously compromised. If there is simply an insufficient amount within then this will lead to metal against metal and a quick deterioration. You may hear loud knocking noises coming from within which will indicate that the primary load-bearing components – the bearings – are on the way out. Quick action will be required, or catastrophic damage will ensue.
Can you see some blue smoke emitting from your exhaust? This indicates that the oil is actually burning inside the engine. Once again, quick action is required and you will have to take your vehicle into the mechanic's shop so that they can rebuild the motor.
Issues With the Timing
Finally, poor overall maintenance can affect the overall timing process within the engine which is controlled by a very complicated belt and pulley system. This helps ensure that the pistons and valves move in sync and if it were to break, massive engine damage would ensue.
Don't delay if you suspect that your engine may be in a state of disrepair. Get on the phone to your mechanic right away to schedule the initial visit.