This chapter provides a quick review of the operating
principles of a four-stroke-cycle, piston engine. The
interaction of basic engine components are discussed.
Related systems—cooling, lubrication, fuel, computer
control, and other systems—are explained. This review
will prepare you for later text chapters that discuss these
topics in much more detail.
This chapter uses words and illustrations to construct
a basic, one-cylinder engine. You will see how each part is
installed in the basic engine and learn how that part
performs an important function. Then, near the end of the
chapter, the systems that supplement engine operation and
protect the engine from damage are reviewed.
If you have completed an introductory course that
covered engine operation, you should still read through
this chapter to refresh your memory. If you are not familiar
with the operation of an engine, study this chapter care-
fully. This will let you catch up with the students that have
already had some training in engines.
An engine is the source of power for moving the vehi-
cle and operating the other systems. Sometimes termed the
power plant, it burns a fuel (usually gasoline or diesel fuel)
to produce heat, expansion of gasses, pressure, and result-
ing part movement.
Since a vehicle’s engine burns fuel inside of itself, it is
termed an internal combustion engine. As you will learn,
the arrangement of an engine’s parts allows it to harness
the energy of the burning fuel.
Figure 1-1 illustrates the major parts of a modern,
multi-cylinder engine. Study them as they are introduced:
The block is the supporting structure for the engine.
The piston slides up and down in the block.
The piston rings seal the space between the block and
sides of the piston.
10 Auto Engine Repair
Crankshaft Oil pan Piston rings Connecting rod
Figure 1-1. Study the general location of parts in an engine.This will help you while reviewing the operation of an engine in this chapter. (Ford)