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7 Things To Check When Buying A used car engine
The end of the lifecycle for internal combustion engines is fast approaching. But, some are still in use on small vehicles and larger trucks. If you want to buy a used car engine there are several things to check before committing yourself to the purchase. Here are some tips on what to look for when buying a used car engine.
Oil Quality Check
Most engines use oil which should be changed regularly. It absorbs contaminants from the combustion process, helps cool moving parts, lubricates moving components and reduces wear among other things. Remember that oil also contains toxins that have been known to cause cancer after prolonged exposure or extended use by people who have close contact with it - eg mechanics who work with engines all day long without adequate safety protection.
Borescope Inspection Camera
The Borescope is a tool that enables the user to inspect hard-to-access components. A camera housed in a flexible tube, it gives a clear video image of the situation inside an engine's cylinders or crank case. This can be useful when trying to assess whether a used car engine needs to be taken apart and rebuilt. This tool is particularly helpful in inspecting for damage to components that are difficult to see otherwise. The images can be fed into a computer monitor or smartphone app for easy viewing.
The cooling system of any engine needs regular checking, especially after an overhaul or rebuild. This is because coolant contains glycol and other chemicals which soften the water significantly. These dissolve lubricating oils applied during the machining process and make them part of the coolant's mix when re-filling the system with fresh coolant. The concentration of these oils in used car engines reduces over time as excess oil gets flicked out through loose valves or past worn valve guides, resulting in engine overheating problems that are hard to identify.
Spark Plug Inspection
Conduct a spark plug inspection of used car engines before buying if possible. This can reveal signs of internal damage not visible from the outside. In the event that there is serious damage to an engine, it may be time for a rebuild or replacement. A visual inspection of this important component will show whether there are any cracks in the porcelain casing - this might indicate deeper engine problems that will likely need fixing prior to installing any used car engines. Cracked electrodes and corrosion on the outer shell can also point out existing problems which need addressing either way and should be considered even when buying cheap second hand Mazda engines through reputable vehicle importers online who may still be able to supply replacement units.
Used car engines need to be checked for compression before buying. This is because engine cylinders may have warped over time, creating an uneven gap between the piston and the cylinder walls during combustion. If low compression is detected in one or more cylinders it could be indicative of serious internal damage that needs repairing or replacing. Excessive cranking speed (RPMs) when starting up cold can point out problems with this nature as well. It's advisable to take note of the RPMs needed to start cold, idle RPMs and maximum RPM levels before buying used car engines through online suppliers who might still be able to offer replacements where necessary.
Used car engines need to be checked for loss of compression before buying. This is because engine cylinders may have warped over time, creating an uneven gap between the piston and the cylinder walls during combustion. If low compression is detected in one or more cylinders it could be indicative of serious internal damage that needs repairing or replacing. Excessive cranking speed (RPMs) when starting up cold can point out problems with this nature as well. It's advisable to take note of the RPMs needed to start cold, idle RPMs and maximum RPM levels before buying used car engines through online suppliers who might still be able to offer replacements where necessary.
Basic Engine Inspection
This is more of an overall basic engine inspection to determine if buying used car engines online will be worth the cost. The absence of blue, brown or white smoke during cold cranking can indicate a lack of oil residue on cylinders and pistons within the engine block - something which is important to know before installing second hand engines into new models for resale elsewhere. A visual inspection can inform you of any coolant leaks or drips as well as abnormal heat discolouration (rust) of exhaust manifolds and other parts exposed to high temperatures via combustion processes. When buying used car engines through reputable vehicle importers it helps knowing these things about an engine condition even if the asking price seems too good be true because sometimes there are still exchanges and refunds made possible.
Engine Finder can help by connecting you to wide network of Mazda engine suppliers and importers in South Africa.