A Guide to Chevy Engines

Whether you drive a Camaro, a Silverado or a Suburban, the vehicle must be properly maintained in order to handle stop-and-go traffic, long drives and the demanding Texas climate. Regular tuneups will help your automobile achieve the best fuel mileage possible and provide the power required to tow a boat or a loaded trailer. The internal combustion engine in your vehicle requires the correct fuel-air mixture, a sufficient spark and the right timing. This generates the explosion needed to efficiently turn the crankshaft that provides torque, power and speed. When there is a problem, you may need to troubleshoot various subsystems to determine the cause.

Troubleshooting Chevy Engine Problems

Attach a diagnostic tester to the connection under the dash. Program the tool for your particular year, make and model. Compare the readings to a fault code chart for details to identify the problem with your automobile. The following are a few of the most common issues that Chevy engines can develop.

If the engine refuses to turn over, check the battery, starter and the ignition system. A weak battery will not provide the sufficient level of electrical power required to turn the starter or generate an adequate spark necessary to ignite the fuel-air mixture. Check for corroded battery clamps and terminals as well as worn or frayed spark plug wires. Inspect the spark plugs, ignition coil and ignition control module. You also must ensure that the starter and fuel pump are functioning properly.

If the engine stalls or idles roughly, there may be a leak in the vacuum system. A hole or crack in the vacuum hose or intake manifold will lower the internal engine pressure, which affects the delivery of air and fuel. Ensure that the fuel pump is delivering the correct amount of fuel under the right pressure. Make sure that the air filter is in good condition as a clogged filter can cause also engine problems.

An engine that idles rough, stalls, hesitates, surges or misfires regularly may be an indication of a worn or faulty ignition coil. A defective coil will not deliver enough electricity for a forceful spark. Inspect the distributor and rotor for damage. Verify the timing. Ensure that the spark plugs have the correct gap spacing and that the fuel pump is functioning correctly. Check for a blown cylinder gasket as well as a restricted exhaust system.

Diagnosing Engine Noises

A valve, or tappet, noise is usually a clicking, tapping or clacking sound that occurs when the engine is running at half speed but disappears at higher speeds. This problem is caused by a defective hydraulic valve lifter or excessive valve clearance. Insert a thickness gauge between the rocker arm or lifter and the valve stem. Adjust the clearance spacing if the noise goes away. Should the noise continue, the problem might be caused by worn or loose lifters, a rough cam surface or a weak valve spring.

Piston ring noise is similar to valve noise, but it increases with acceleration. The noise is caused by a broken or worn piston ring, worn cylinder walls or low piston ring tension. Remove the spark plug, and apply a tablespoon of engine oil to each cylinder. Turn the engine over a few revolutions to work the oil paste into the piston rings. Reinstall the spark plugs, and start the engine. The piston rings are bad if this technique reduces the noise. A metallic double knock noticeable during idling is a sign of a worn or loose piston pin, bushing or a lack of engine oil. Another sound caused by worn piston components is known as piston slap. Resembling the sound of a muffled bell, the noise occurs when the piston rocks back and forth in the cylinder. It can also be caused by misaligned connecting rods and worn cylinder walls. A cylinder balance test will identify which connecting rod is causing the problem. The test shorts out the spark plugs one cylinder at a time. The noise will lessen when the malfunctioning cylinder misfires.

A light knocking or pounding sound most often noticed during an even rpm is usually traced to the connecting rods. In addition to a lack of oil, the noise can be caused by a worn bearing or crank pin as well as a misaligned connecting rod. A crankshaft issue can cause a dull, metallic sound, especially when the vehicle is accelerating, carrying a load or pulling a trailer. Possible reasons for this problem include worn main, rod or thrust bearings.

Detonation can cause serious damage to your engine. It may make a knocking or pinging sound. It is caused by improper ignition timing, a lean fuel-air mixture or gas with an insufficient octane rating. Detonation can be prevented by enriching the fuel-air mixture and using a higher-octane fuel. You may also try retarding the ignition timing and reducing the manifold pressure.

When to Replace an Engine

If the engine in your Chevy car, truck or SUV has high mileage, is burning oil, making unsettling noises or has locked up, it may be too cost-prohibitive to rebuild the motor. The engine will have to be disassembled so that each part can be inspected to ensure that they still meet the required tolerances. Parts that are out of spec will have to be reworked by a machine shop. Malfunctioning components must be replaced. The costs for labor and parts may be more than the amount required to purchase and install a new engine. When this occurs, you should consider purchasing a brand-new OEM Chevy engine that can be installed in less than a day.

Why Install a Genuine Chevy Engine?

Chevy OEM replacement engines are built using high-quality components that are manufactured to the same standards as those required by the factory. These Chevy OEM engines will fit and function correctly without the need for additional parts or special modifications to your vehicle. This will save you time and money while eliminating the guesswork that inevitably occurs when considering replacement aftermarket engines. At gmwarehousedirect.com, we have been providing Chevy OEM parts since 1929. Our company is the largest Chevy performance dealer in the country. To find the engine that you need, search our extensive catalog by VIN, keyword or part number. You can also select the appropriate year, make and model from our intuitive drop-down menu. Our knowledgeable staff is available to answer any questions and ensure that your order is shipped right to your door.