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All about Car Engine Problems

Normally, it is accepted by most folk that getting repairs on your car is an expensive task. However, if it is the engine that is broken, the cost of repair can dwarf the amount of money needed to fix other parts. Or it could be a simple problem that won’t put any dent in your bank account.


The engine may have had such a massive amount of damage that it needs to be replaced. In this case, most people just choose to just sell the whole car to the local auto wreckers. It all really depends on how bad of a state it is in. Some of the common engine headaches can be predicted with these symptoms:

  • While driving, the engine stalls;
  • You can crank the engine, but it won’t start;
  • The car is leaking engine oil;
  • The coolant is leaking;
  • There is white, blue or black smoke coming from the exhaust;
  • A rattling noise is coming from the engine;
  • The needle of the temperature gauge points to hot;
  • There is a bubbling noise occurring after the engine is turned off;

You may have good luck with some of these issues, however, there is a chance that your vehicle will be rendered un-driveable. Is your engine exhibiting any of the above symptoms? You had better learn what is causing it, how it needs to be repaired, and how expensive these repairs are going to be.

The Timing Belt Has Snapped

If the timing belt has the misfortune of snapping, you can’t drive anywhere as the engine will turn off. And you won’t be able to start it either. All you need to do in order to keep your timing belt in good condition is to keep it maintained. The owner’s manual for your automobile will have instructions on how often to replace the timing chain.

The Engine Won’t Run or It Won’t Crank

When your engine cranks, and the engine won’t start, you can’t drive your car. There are a few reasons for this occurring. One of them is that there is no fuel. Or the fuel is wrong or faulty somehow. It could be that the wiring is bad. Perhaps some fuses have blown. The cost of getting this fixed range from $300 to $1800.

Leaking Engine Oil

Engine oil is important because it acts as a lubricant for the continuously moving parts in your engine. Without it, they will experience much higher levels of wear and tear. It is no wonder then that you want to avoid having an oil leak.

If a gasket or seal in your engine has broken, you may find out when you see puddles of black oil under your car. It has been reported to smell horrible. The cause is usually engine gaskets that have degraded and failed. This is an easy thing to get repaired, and doesn’t cost a lot.

The “Check Engine” Light is on

When there is something wrong happening within the engine, the car’s system will tell the “check engine” light to light up. You most definitely should not ignore this. It could be one of these things: The oxygen sensor needs replacing, the fuel cap is loose or broken, the catalytic convertor is broken and needs to be replaced, or the mass airflow sensor is failing and needs to be replaced.

Furthermore, if the catalytic convertor needs replacing, you may be set back a few thousand dollars.

Engine Overheating

This is something you don’t want happening. Which makes seeing the temperature gauge in the red quite a stressful experience. There isn’t one solitary reason for this to happen either. However, often times it is due to low levels of coolant and water in the radiator. And many things can cause this to happen. Or there might be a leak somewhere in the cooling system.

Whatever it is, if you catch it soon enough it may only cost you a few hundred dollars. If it catastrophically damaged the whole engine, it could be curtains for your car.

Blown Rod or Rod Knock

One concerning sign that something is wrong is if you can hear a solid and repetitive sound while driving. It will be similar to someone is striking something with a hammer. The term folk use to describe this is Rod Knock. It can also be called Blown Rod. A crankshaft that connects the rod bearings has broken.

How is this caused? If there is an insufficient amount of engine oil to keep the moving parts lubricated, parts wear down considerably. A bearing usually ends up being destroyed as a result. These parts are deep within the engine so it is a very difficult problem to repair. It may be the case that the whole engine requires replacing. A Rod Knock can set you back by up to $4000!

Head Gasket that has Blown or been Damaged

This problem is related to engine overheating. If the head gasket blows, it will negatively affect the cooling system, and coolant can leak. Coolant and oil can leak into each other in the engine. Basically, all kinds of bad things are possible.

Also, overheating engine can cause this. And it is extremely expensive to fix. The damage to your bank account can exceed $1200, and go up to $1600.

The Engine Block Has Cracked

It can be tricky to recognise when an engine block has cracked, as a good many engine blocks have small cracks in them anyway. Here is something to look out for: engine overheating. This is due to the fact that the crack occurred in a place that allowed antifreeze to leak out.

Engine smoke is another symptom. If it is blue-grey smoke, have cause for concern. This is due to exhaust fumes coming out of the crack instead of the exhaust system. If you are conducting an oil change, or a coolant flush, it is a good idea to check the colour of the liquids. When oil and antifreeze get together they make a milky white colour. If there is a crack in your engine block, and it has occurred between the passages that these liquid flows in, this is a sure sign.

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