Nevertheless, proper care and maintenance of the overall car is very important. Whatever your car’s model is, you must maintain its top performance and condition by using only heavy-duty and reliable car parts and replacement accessories.
Same is with car engine. Car engine parts are some of the most expensive auto parts, so ignoring small symptoms would cost you lots. Engine sludge problem can be very serious issue. Otherwise, don’t blame mechanics when you have to spend loads of dollars on costly repairs.
But what is engine sludge? How to identify it? What to do to get minimum damage!
What is engine sludge?
Engine sludge develops on and around vehicle’s motor when oil begins to break down and collects on the engine. When engine sludge is present, oil is not able to properly lubricate the moving parts of your vehicle’s motor.
But the question arises that what constitutes engine oil sludge? It is a combination of oxidized oil and contaminants that have settled and been dispersed onto engine surfaces.
With the change in automotive technology over the years, the engine compartment and the car engine oil have also changed in terms of efficiency. These engine oils have more additives in them to suspend soot particles and maintain oil viscosity, with the end result that people are able to wait longer to change their oil.
But what is its impact that we can’t ignore? Well, the car engine temperature becomes hotter and oil breaks down faster under these conditions. Due to this, the antifreeze become more commonly used, leading more people to neglect their car’s cooling system. This worn-out antifreeze increases engine’s temperature and performs poorly.
How is sludge formed?
The major role of oil is to suspend the contaminants throughout its life. When your engine oil needs change or it out of its life, the contaminants will start settling on the engine parts in form of sludge.
This problem can occur while using both conventional and synthetic oil. You can notice this with the visible color change.
Some drivers have the habit to ignore the advice of mechanic for oil change. But sometimes, your car does need one. Otherwise poor oil change habits will eventually lead to oil oxidizing in engine environment.
This sludge travels wherever the oil travels thus creating potential problems in their way.
This sludge not only put more pressure on car engine parts including radiator and cooling system but it also starts to retain heat.
You will get symptoms like: poor mileage, lose oil pressure, engine stalling, rough acceleration, visible damage to timing belts, gaskets and other engine parts.
How to identify engine sludge?
We have rounded simple steps to identify engine sludge. Never ignore dash lights. Immediately take your vehicle to a professional and let him decode what the problem is.
If you see check engine light on or oil change light illuminating, it’s better to take your vehicle to mechanic and get the required maintenance done on time. These warning lights might be alerting you for potential damage.
Look at your vehicle’s engine by turning off the vehicle and pooping the hood. Carefully notice any visible sign of engine sludge or oil splatter on the outside of the vehicle. If you see thick, dark oil on exterior of engine, then the chances of engine sludge problem becomes quite high.
Check the oil pan with the help of flashlight. The oil should be clean. Any sign of engine sludge in the pan indicates that sludge has reached the motor. At last, take help of a trusted mechanic to know what to do if any of these problems have really occurred.
How to prevent engine sludge?
There are various steps that you can take to prevent engine sludge in your car and can save a lot of dollars on costly engine and other parts repair.
Changing car engine oil timely is the key here. Oil and oil filter may not be that expensive things to purchase but their damage can cause expensive repairs. Make sure to change your oil according to owner’s manual specification and use the preferred oil. Most automakers recommend oil change every 5000-7500 miles.
The wrong fuel and oil can create all sorts of problems for your car’s engine including sludge. So, it is strictly advised to follow owner’s manual.
Excessive idling and short commutes that are typical of city driving can encourage sludge build-up as these conditions can prevent your engine from reaching its ideal operating temperature. Try to prevent stop and go driving.
There are various sludge removing products available in the market. They can be used by easily following their instructions printed on the back of the bottle.
Make sure you are visiting a trusted mechanic so that you are not scammed in the name of expensive repairs and unnecessary oil changes.
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