Do I Have A Seized Engine
Written by Craig B

Do I Have A Seized Engine?

Do you have a seized engine? You may have if your engine will not turnover. Perhaps one day you are driving, hear a loud noise, the car dies and will no longer operate. It may well be the engine has seized. read on to learn more.

Can It Be Fixed?

Starvation of oil is the most common cause of a seized engine. This causes metal parts of the engine to rub against each other, creating tremendous heat and can cause a little engine damage to extensive damage. Also, keep in mind, if an engine has not been running, it can seize because the rings of the piston freeze against the walls of the cylinder – often this is the case with older vehicles.

Hydrolocked Engine

This occurs when water enters the combustion chamber of the engine. In cases where the piston is unable to reach the top end of its stroke as the water prevents compression. This stops the engine. At lower RPM’s, you may be able to escape extensive damage to your engine. At higher RPMs, connecting rods becoming bent and busted pistons are almost  inevitable.

Vapor Locked Engine

This does not mean your car engine is not turning over, but the engine will not start. It is a problem with the fuel system – frequently found on older cars. With gasoline in the pump or fuel lines turn to gas from liquid, the engine is starved of fuel and will no longer run. The engine will lose power, splutter along and turn off. It will not restart, despite attempting to do so.

Cause Of Seized Engines

  • In the case of a seized engine or bad starter, running out of oil may be the cause. It may also be a broken engine oil pump.
  • In the case of the engine being hydrolocked – water has entered the engine.
  • An engine vapor lock is inevitably related to high heat. The fuel in the lines turns to vapor. This can happen from switching off the engine when it is hot outside or being out in in heavy traffic when it is extremely hot outside. As the fuel pump is incapable of moving vapor.

Rebuilding A Seized Engine

When the engine has seized because of oil starvation, a rebuild may be possible but is almost always way too cost prohibitive. It will require a very thorough mechanical inspection. Also be on the lookout for an engine that has overheated once it has seized. A warped engine can result from the heat and you may not be able to observe this, but the price will soon escalate.

Can It Be Fixed?

Sadly the cost for rebuilding the engine, even if it is possible, is in excess of $3,000. In most cases it will be more worthwhile to scrap the car.

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