The Engine: The Lifeblood of Your Vehicle
The engine. The engine is the lifeblood of any vehicle from the Dodge Durango to the Chevy Bolt. The engine is the end all be all to your car running smooth and sound. At Cash Car Buyers, we want to inform our readers on the importance of routine engine repair and maintenance. Having engine trouble and can’t seem to diagnose the problem? Read on to discover our tips, tricks, and techniques on how to ensure your vehicle’s engine health and your overall safety.
Signs and Symptoms Your Engine May Be In Trouble
What’s that sound? It sounds like trouble! What’s that smell? It smells like a fuel line leak! Here are a few of the common ways to immediately tell if your engine is struggling or may need some prompt repairs.
1. The Check Engine Light Flashes
It happens to all of us. Driving down the road with not a care in the world, and then as if out of nowhere we see the dreaded check engine light turn on. For many drivers, this check engine light is so feared due to the unknown factors behind that symbol. Is it a blown gasket? Or maybe just an overdue oil change? Though it may be unnerving, there are many auto body shops local and national like Firestone Complete Auto Care that offer free check engine light inspections. Once your check engine light is inspected by an auto professional, they can help you diagnose your issue promptly and secure a timely solution.
2. You Smell Gasoline While Driving Your Vehicle
This sign is incredibly important to watch out for because it is not visible and therefore could not be as easily detected and diagnosed. It is imperative while driving your vehicle to be aware of any out of the ordinary smells or physical sensations coming from your vehicle, as these will be warning signs something is just not right. We researched and broke down some minor issues that could be occurring in your vehicle if you smell gas. We directly compared those smaller problems to more major and dangerous situations that could be the root causes of that alarming scent, detailed below.
Minor Issues When Smelling Gas In Your Vehicle
If you smell gas while driving your vehicle there could be potentially a few minor issues at hand. Some of the problems could include a loose gas cap or you may have splashed a small amount of gasoline on your clothes or shoes while filling up at the gas pump. Both of these concerns are very minor and can be easily remedied by tightening your gas cap and washing your clothes or shoes when arriving at your final destination. However minor these issues may seem to be on the surface, if the smell of gasoline is faint it is imperative once you catch a whiff of the scent to immediately contact an auto professional. After contacting, detail your concerns, and schedule an appointment as soon as possible to diagnose and hopefully remedy the issue.
Major Issues When Smelling Gasoline In Your Car
As we discussed above, there may be some simple reasons why you smell gas in your vehicle. However, be aware the solution might not be so simple and could cost a pretty penny. Two of the most costly reasons why you would be smelling gas in your vehicle is a fuel line link or fuel tank leak.
A Fuel Line Leak
A fuel line leak is when your vehicle’s fuel lines become worn out and leak due to wear and tear. The fuel line leak is especially dangerous because it could potentially spark a fire in your vehicle. If you notice leakage of any kind coming from inside or outside of your vehicle call your nearest auto body shop and ask to book an appointment as soon as possible to avoid a potentially dangerous situation.
A Fuel Tank Leak
A second reason why your vehicle might be smelling like gasoline is your fuel tank might be leaking gasoline. Though these two issues are similar they are quite different in scope and detection. If your fuel tank is leaking you will most likely be able to identify a larger pool of oil leaking onto the ground outside of your vehicle. In comparison to the fuel line leak which could potentially be less noticeable and therefore even more dangerous.
3. You Experience a Loss of Engine Power
This may seem like a no brainer but it can be a slow and gradual sign that your engine is going bad. When driving along, always be sure to test the rev of your engine. Does it feel the same as when you drove off the lot? Is it quick to respond to the gas pedal? These are all questions that need to be answered in order to figure out how healthy your engine is and if it needs to be looked at by a professional. This is another potential sneaky sign that your engine may need help. This sign may go undetected for a longer period of time because it is a physical sensation and not a visible factor. If you fear the worst with your engine, try taking your vehicle to a secluded area and practice revving the engine to really diagnose if your engine is losing its power. Take it for a slow test drive and try to compare the engine power, looking for any sharp decrease in engine power. As always, if you feel like something is a little off or does not feel like it should, ring up your local auto body shop and book an appointment to bounce your concerns off of an automotive professional.
Can I Repair The Engine Myself?
Houston, we have a problem! Now that you have read a few of the signs showcasing a problem engine we now know it needs to be fixed. But how? There are many avenues that can be taken in the journey from a dud engine to a high-performing masterpiece. It all boils down to personal preference and the overall scope of your engine’s issues. The main decision that must be made by yours truly is if you want to repair the engine yourself or seek out a professional auto body shop to take the problem engine off of your hands. We compared the two avenues in terms of cost and time analysis, so you can view our findings and choose the right solution for you!
At Home Engine Repair with Youtube
Thank goodness for the internet, Youtube in particular. We scoured the internet to address at home engine repair and discovered two fantastic Youtube videos that provide step by step instructions on how to repair your vehicle, what tools you will need, and so much more. So grab your popcorn, pen and paper and let’s get to watching!
1. Eliminator Performance Small Engine Repair – Basic Tools
Eliminator Performance provides a twenty minute video greatly detailing the tools and items you will need for all of your small engine repair issues and problems. This video is filmed and produced in Canada, but the producer explains all parts and tools shown in the video can be purchased in the United States as well as Canada.
What sets this video apart from the rest is the meticulous detail outlined in this video. The producer breaks down every tool you will need, explains how all the tools are used and how they work in tandem. He also breaks down the price of every item mentioned in the content so you can be aware of how much you will need to shell out to complete your personal project. This is a perfect video for a viewer who is a beginner looking for a guiding hand to walk through every tool needed to start your small engine process!
2. Gene Lonergan Small Engine Series
Gene Lonergan provides viewers with a deep dive into breaking down and then reassembling a small engine. This video is perfect to view after watching the first video listed in our series, which provides exact definitions of all the tools needed to complete the project Gene embarks on in his video series.
The particular engine Gene works on in this video is the new Briggs and Stratton 300 Series L Head engine which in this case is used to power a lawn mower. This engine, and video are still very relevant because as we will see some DIY enthusiasts have powered vehicles with a lawn mower engine making this engine a great one to know the ins and outs. Gene also offers a second video and third video in this particular series titled, #2 Taking Apart and Rebuilding a Small Engine Series and #3 Taking Apart and Rebuilding a Small Engine Series on Youtube.
This video series is perfect for the at home motor enthusiast who has some previous knowledge of tools but Gene is quick to provide easy to understand definitions of terms and greatly details his methods and procedures throughout his video series. Each video is about 7 minutes long so you don’t have to waste your entire day of this vehicle maintenance series. At Cash Car Buyers, we recommend viewing the entire series of videos from start to finish so you can see the entirety of the breakdown and rebuild process with Gene as the lead of the project.
At Home Repair Final Thoughts
If the problem or issue in your engine is minor, there may be a few ways you can take apart and reassemble your small engine at home. Using proper tools and expert guidance as detailed above, the cost analysis for this solution is fantastic. No labor cost for you, but just giving up some free time and maybe a little elbow grease at the end of the working day. Using the internet and Youtube are two great ways to receive relevant and important information you will need to use for this at home project.
Should I have an Auto Professional Look at My Engine?
Here inlies the age old question: at home repair vs. professional care? The answer is honestly, up to own discernment. If you feel confident in the tools and guidance provided then by all means, go for it! However, bear in mind it depends on what the problems are with your engine. If the issues are minor like a small tear in your engine that might need a patch or the engine could just use an oil change those are all solutions that can be done in the comfort of your garage.
On the other side of the coin, an auto professional is someone who can diagnose, provide a timely solution to your small engine needs in record time. No research, no Youtube, just you handing over your vehicle to an expert. What is a positive in this scenario, is the amount of auto shops that specialize specifically in small engine repair around the country. At the end of the day, this all boils down to an issue of convenience, time saved, and the amount of cash you are willing to shell out to complete your small engine project. Also keep in mind many auto shops that specialize in small engines would most likely love to chat with you about your project so find a local engine repair in your area and give them a call today! Good luck and happy small engine repair from all of us at Cash Car Buyers!