Piston Rings

There are so many parts on your car that have so many different functions that you may be confused as to what all the parts do. Unless you are an experienced mechanic, hearing about all the various car parts may have you more confused than ever. Especially if you take your car to a mechanic and they start telling you about all the parts on your car that are in need of repair. This can be overwhelming to many car owners.

Some may be curious as to what the piston rings are and what exactly their job is. There are usually three piston rings in each vehicle. Two of the piston rings are responsible for controlling the oil and they are also referred to as the compression rings because they are responsible for causing the seal to compress. The third ring is located under the other rings and it controls the amount of oil that flows to the liner. Once the oil hits the liner it lubricates the piston skirt and also lubricates the compression rings as well.

These rings can experience general wear and tear just like many other parts on a vehicle. The piston rings are constantly moving up and down the cylinder bore which causes them to wear out. They also carry a large load which can eventually cause them to need replaced. Because they are prone to constant wear they are made out of very strong materials in order to get the most life out of them as possible. Most piston rings are made out of cast iron and steel or they may be coated in order to prolong the life of the ring. The top rings that are responsible for controlling the oil flow are often coated with Nitrided, Chromium, or possibly a ceramic coating.

You can have new piston rings put on your car by a professional mechanic or you may be experienced enough to change the piston rings on your own. If you choose to replace the piston rings on your car on your own there are a few things you may want to consider. The piston rings are extremely easy to damage. In fact the piston rings can easily be damaged during installation when they are not handled very carefully. Sliding the piston rings in to place can be tricky. Before you can replace the piston rings with new ones you must first successfully remove the old worn rings. When one or more of the rings is stuck then it may take some effort to remove the rings. One good way of removing stubborn rings is soaking the piston for several hours to loosen the rings. Soak the piston in diesel oil or another approved cleaning agent. Most of the time this will dislodge the stuck rings however if it does not then you will have to take further steps to free the rings from the piston. It is important to make sure your piston is cleaned and prepped for the new rings placement.

Placing the new piston rings on the piston can be very tedious. There is a tool that is used to help aid the placement of the rings. It is often referred to as a piston ring tool. This tool is able to hold on to the ring carefully while allowing just the right amount of room for sliding the new ring into place. If you do not have a lot of experience in dealing with the piston or the piston rings this can be challenging, however it can be done with a little time and patience.

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