Crankcase Breather

A crankcase breather is designed to help prevent the buildup of gas inside the crankcase. The crankcase is a metal shaft that holds many parts, particularly the crankshaft. Allowing gas and other debris to build up on the crankcase can cause damage to your engine. A crankcase breather helps to prevent this damage by reducing the risk of stress on the engine and extending the life of your crankcase. The breather also helps to protect the rods and cylinders from corrosion caused by gas and other liquids. Crankcase pressure is vented out of the engine via a breather pipe. This pipe is also known as a vent pipe. When the pressure is vented out of the crankcase, the piston rings within the engine can seal tighter against the walls of the cylinder. This helps to provide much better compression giving your engine much more horsepower.

The breather pipe or breather vent is typically attached to the vehicle’s valve cover. This is the area where you will typically pour oil into the engine when it is needed. The breather vent or pipe may also use a filter to help filter out oil that is blown in by the engine. Some higher performance engines use dual breather pipes for better overall performance and more safety to the engine itself. As the pistons inside the engine rotate, along with the crankshaft, air is allowed into your engine. Without properly releasing this air, the engine would make the oil turn frothy. If air enters into the oil supply and turns it frothy, it loses its lubrication abilities, making it very dangerous for your engine. Without being properly lubricated, the engine could throw a rod which would lock it down completely. The air in the engine may also leak out of the engine as the pressure builds which can be very dangerous both to the engine itself as well as anyone who may be standing around the engine. Without a properly functioning breather vent or pipe, this air may leak around the pistons and piston rings causing a dramatic loss of power. The oil in the engine may begin to leak around the pistons as well and can cause damages to the engine as well as smoke, burned pistons and damaged plugs.

Most modern vehicles incorporate a breather pipe which works very well for the average vehicle. Those simply driving family vehicles or traveling back and forth to work and on vacation will find that the breather pipe is very effective in protecting the engine from the buildup of gas and air. Racing engines however, are much more powerful and require more help at times to ensure that they are working properly and providing the desired amount of horsepower. These engines typically use air pumps to help to remove the air from the crankcase. Air or vacuum pumps can remove twice as much air from the crankcase as a breather pipe and help to protect the engine from oil that may leak into combustion chambers or ring sealing.

If a breather pipe becomes plugged or clogged up, the engine may overhead and you could potentially begin to experience frequent misfires from the spark plugs. Oil leaking may also cause these problems and will cause the engine to experience less power. If you do not quickly repair the clogged breather pipe, your plugs could foul or you could potentially blow a head gasket or intake gasket which could cost thousands of dollars in repairs. Having the breathing system will help to prevent major damage to the engine. If you lose a breather cap, it is important that you replace it immediately to prevent your engine from building up debris and gas that could cause catastrophic damage.

Comments are closed.