Engine Health

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Discussion

GeorgeWood

Original Poster:

22 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
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The initial message was deleted from this topic on 02 July 2020 at 20:05

Rod200SX

7,515 posts

132 months

Friday 26th June
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Too many variables between different engines I'd say. Some cope better than others.

My experiences when I was younger mirror this. My low miles 1.4 K series didn't last long with my unknowledgable self thrashing it from cold (I soon learned that the water temperature being ok didn't mirror the oil temp...)

Whereas I knew countless folk with Corsa C's that were abused hot, cold, never serviced yet lived on. The cockroaches of small cars hehe

ETA:, depending on the type of car, you may be able to determine some things with OBD software, not much but it'd take a very trusting seller to let you plug something in to their car anyway.

Just go with the usual signs, coolant, oil, check over for things like leaks, smells.

Edited by Rod200SX on Friday 26th June 16:31

spikeyhead

11,728 posts

153 months

Friday 26th June
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Most cars that are scrapped have the engines working fine, it's everything else that dies.

It's been decades when "running in" had much bearing on when a car would die.

WarrenB

894 posts

74 months

Friday 26th June
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I think a good show of how tough engines actually are is to see a banger race. They'll often be bouncing off the limiters with no coolant lap after lap and they're still going.

GeorgeWood

Original Poster:

22 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
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This particular engine would be a 1.5 EcoBoost 3 cylinder 200BHP so too new of an engine to know definitively but presumably it’s similar to other engines!

JD82

127 posts

91 months

Friday 26th June
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Friend of mine recently sold an R53 Mini Cooper... was helping him with the ad and asked when it was last serviced? He looked a bit puzzled and said “about 8 years ago”. Used for short trips about 4K miles a year. He said it “went fine”.

Limpet

3,929 posts

117 months

Friday 26th June
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I think unless the first owner drives like a lunatic everywhere, or makes a conscious effort to be mechanically unsympathetic, the vast majority of engines now don't actually care. Running in rules, if they exist at all, are often quite vague and open to interpretation anyway. Lots of "try not tos" and "make an effort tos" rather than any specific rules.

Dealers will happily sell on ex-demonstrators with full manufacturers warranty that have often been driven hard by multiple potential customers pretty much from new. Particularly in the case of performance models. Who test drives a performance car without putting their boot down a few times, and I've done this in cars with just a hundred or so miles on the clock in some cases.

I really don't think it's a big deal any more.

Baldchap

3,038 posts

48 months

Friday 26th June
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A bigger issue is thrashing from cold.

Breaking in hard is considered a good thing in certain circles.

gottans

3,425 posts

101 months

Friday 26th June
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GeorgeWood said:
A recent topic which was brought up was running in of an engine. If an engine was poorly run in it would result in hotspots, poor seal with the piston rings etc.

As this is something we do not know about unless we bought a new car ourselves, how can we tell if a car has had a good run in when buying second hand? Surely you could buy a “thrashed car” with a good service record?

How many years or miles does it take to typically show up these issues associated with abuse to the engine? Perhaps if a bad run in resulted in a bad engine maybe half the cars on the road would be damaged?
I don't know how you would tell, if you are that worried then buy new or a used rental car, there will be no ambiguity with these options.

A1VDY

2,636 posts

83 months

Friday 26th June
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spikeyhead said:
Most cars that are scrapped have the engines working fine, it's everything else that dies.

It's been decades when "running in" had much bearing on when a car would die.
This
Its electrics which write off cars mostly..

Ron99

1,370 posts

37 months

Friday 26th June
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I think oil consumption gives a clue as to how well run in or how happy an engine is although of course it's not perfect.

The reason I say that is because in the past we've had a handful of new or nearly new cars which burned more oil than they should, but after I'd given them a few hours of long fast motorway runs (70mph cruising, not thrashing) the oil consumption stopped completely.

Ron99

1,370 posts

37 months

Friday 26th June
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It is said that pre-ignition/knocking/detonation can occur if too much oil gets past the piston rings.
Supposedly the excessive oil getting into the combustion chamber messes with the combustion chemistry, encouraging the fuel to burn unpredictably.

Some manufacturers have changed oil formulations to try to reduce the chance of pre-ignition.

J4CKO

30,895 posts

156 months

Friday 26th June
quotequote all
A1VDY said:
spikeyhead said:
Most cars that are scrapped have the engines working fine, it's everything else that dies.

It's been decades when "running in" had much bearing on when a car would die.
This
Its electrics which write off cars mostly..
In some cases, usually its a car thats still running ok but it only worth £800 but needs tyres, brakes, couple of suspension bits and stuff like that, just not worth anyone's time and effort but would be fine, but its the labour side that kills it £90 for two springs but £150 to fit them, £300 for brakes, £250 for tyres etc.

jonwm

1,485 posts

70 months

Friday 26th June
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WarrenB said:
I think a good show of how tough engines actually are is to see a banger race. They'll often be bouncing off the limiters with no coolant lap after lap and they're still going.
Great example, I've seen demo derbys and the engines are literally being hit by the other cars and are still going strong.

Shows how tough cars are when they endure these races

GeorgeWood

Original Poster:

22 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
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So what do we think in terms of time and miles before a bad engine shows itself?

ddom

1,154 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
quotequote all
Modern engines need very little, if anything. Oils now are unbelievably good, as is the metallurgy of recent times. But, running in traditionally was so poor it might have actually hindered engine life. You do need WOT in short bursts and no loading it up at low revs.


whp1983

348 posts

95 months

Friday 26th June
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Modern cars do seem to want it- E46 and E92 M3s had a running in period and run in service where oils where switched (no idea what happened to engine if this didn’t get done)

My friends new Alpine had a rev limitation for first 1000 miles or so- no idea if precautionary or required and indeed what happens if you ignored.

I guess these are perils of second hand purchasing down the line!

GeorgeWood

Original Poster:

22 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
quotequote all
ddom said:
Modern engines need very little, if anything. Oils now are unbelievably good, as is the metallurgy of recent times. But, running in traditionally was so poor it might have actually hindered engine life. You do need WOT in short bursts and no loading it up at low revs.
Most manuals state no WOT though and keep revs low, very conflicting info!

ddom

1,154 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
quotequote all
GeorgeWood said:
Most manuals state no WOT though and keep revs low, very conflicting info!
Traditionally with a new engine you need to seal the rings, best for oil consumption and lifetime.

https://www.enginebuildermag.com/2018/05/how-to-br...

GeorgeWood

Original Poster:

22 posts

4 months

Friday 26th June
quotequote all
ddom said:
Traditionally with a new engine you need to seal the rings, best for oil consumption and lifetime.

https://www.enginebuildermag.com/2018/05/how-to-br...
Why does every owners manual usually state revs below 3k etc? Totally agree with what you sent though.