A piston is a piece of metal located inside each engine cylinder that moves up and down as the engine operates. As the piston moves, it compresses the air-fuel mixture and picks up the force from the resulting combustion reaction. That force is transferred to the crankshaft through a connecting rod. All of the power produced by all of the engine pistons is delivered to the transmission, where it is then transmitted to the wheels, allowing the car to move. Spring-loaded rings surround each piston to keep everything sealed and prevent any combustion force from escaping out the sides of the piston.
Signs of a bad piston
- “Piston slap” noise is present
- Low engine power
- Poor engine performance
- Blue smoke from the exhaust
- Check engine light illuminates
If you notice any of the above signs, get your engine inspected by a car care professional as soon as possible. Your technician will first conduct a series of preliminary tests on the pistons, including a compression test, leak test, and a bore scope test which is used to identify any physical damage in the pistons. Your technician will also seek to identify any trouble codes that may have been produced. Once the preliminary tests are done, replacing a piston requires a full engine disassembly and a lot of labor. Any pistons that appear burnt, cracked, shattered, or scuffed will be replaced.
The best way to get maintenance done on your pistons is to book your appointment through CarAdvise. CarAdvise makes car care simple and guarantees that you’ll pay less than retail price on all car maintenance services.