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A new way of cleansing powertrains uses hydrogen cleaning technology and provides similar effects to engine overhaul.

Category: Car Maintenance Advice

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The internal combustion engine is the most important aspect of a car. Just like how the human heart pumps oxygenated blood providing us with the energy to move, the engine is the heart of a car and supplies the torque required for motion and power.

Let's be honest, unless you are a technician or a certified mechanic, the engine in a car will indeed be rocket science to any common man with lots of metal, tubes and wires running all around the engine bay.

Internal combustion engines

Internal combustion engines essentially mixes petrol with hot gases within the cylinder chamber, and when ignited via the spark plug - provides the necessary force for your car to move.

Automotive Engineering 101: The internal combustion engine - the heart of the vehicle - provides the force needed to commute

The piston - which looks like a metal clenched fist - slides down when the intake valve opens. This fills the engine with a cylinder full of air and a tiny drop of petrol is injected into the mix. With this mixture, the piston moves back up - compressing the mixture in the process.

When the piston reaches the top again, the spark plug ignites, resulting in an explosion in the cylinder causing the piston to be pushed down again. Once again, the piston hits the bottom of its stroke, the exhaust valve opens, and the exhaust leaves the cylinder. And this cycle keeps continuing, until you turn off the engine. 

What is Carbon?

Carbon is the sixth element of the periodic table and the toughest known element known to man. A derivative and expensive product - carbon fibre is worshipped by elite manufactures like McLaren and Ferrari to Pagani and Koenigsegg, among others, in a bid to lessen gross weight without compromising integrity and strength of the chassis.

For some reason carbon can also be found in our engine cylinder banks.
The presence of Carbon in engines

Carbon is a naturally occurring by-product in out engines. There are no theoretical reasons to why this happens but some possibilities include being light-footed, stop-and-go driving or lugging the engine.

Your engine does not perform at optimum temperatures during city or low-rev driving; thus  the opportunity for carbon to be present in your engine is higher.

Carbon will appear to form as a thin coat of black soot and an increase in build-up can lead to decreased fuel mileage, excessive emissions, lack of power, stalling and poor acceleration.

Like nicotine in a smokers lung, carbon can 'choke' the cylinders, comprimising on the performance and feel of the vehicle

As carbon builds up it resides on your piston head, and valves. This restricts the internal components of the engine to function at optimum levels as the carbon adds more resistance and the piston cannot fully push and pull.

Unfortunately while cars nowadays are littered with technology like camera's and sensors, there is nothing on your dashboard that informs you of the carbon build up in your engine - but you can definitely feel the sluggish performance over time.

Clearing carbon from your engine

An engine overhaul or complete engine flush every 10,000km is usually the only time the carbon can be flushed. Chemicals will be injected to flush the system and some parts may have to be manually cleaned. Besides, certain chemicals can corrode the internal walls of the engine - damaging it further.

Another method to clear the carbon is redlining your vehicle to ensure the resulting heat in the engine melts away the carbon build up.

Though it sounds like a load of fun, this eventually damages your engine quicker due to high temperatures - which might not be tolerated by most volume sellers i.e. Toyota Corolla Altis, Kia Cerato Forte - thus resulting to faster wear and tear.
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