Every new car owner, however ignorant about the working of a car, comes to know about the intake manifold gasket sooner or later. Like every other car part, this one gets affected as time passes. During the course of its duty, it suffers degradation due to wear and tear. Such a worn-out intake gasket manifold needs to be replaced promptly, as it can affect the performance of a car in the most fundamental way. Postponing it can force a car owner to pay more than what is necessary for each mile traveled.
What is an Intake Manifold Gasket?
Knowing where exactly it is located in a car assembly, can be of great help in understanding the importance and its functions. It is juxtaposed in an internal combustion engine between the intake manifold and the cylinder heads, as well as the block. Its primary function is filling and sealing the gap between these parts. A healthy gasket if properly fitted, obstructs the air or the air-fuel mixture from escaping out of the gaps between these car parts.
As it is well-known, an internal combustion engine mixture of cold air and fuel is burned to produce the power which is then translated into motion of the car. The cold air required is sucked into the intake manifold from the atmosphere which is then mixed, with the fuel drawn from the carburetor. The intake manifold then conveys this mixture to the cylinders. In fact, this mixture is sucked into the vacuum in the cylinders, and impacts the closed intake valves. This sudden check to the flow of mixture causes it to reverse its direction creating a high-pressure wave and heat inside manifold runners. As mentioned above, these are connected to the cylinders with the help of the gasket that must be able to withstand this tremendous pressure.
To get high performance and fuel economy from an automobile, it is necessary to supply it with proper percentage of air and fuel (14.7:1) in the mixture. The cold air, because of its high density than the hot air, is very important to get high fuel economy. It expands more when the mixture is burned in the engine, than the hot air (low density), and provides more thrust.
A leaking intake manifold gasket can ruin the performance by allowing the hot air from the engine into the intake manifold. The same problem can let the air and fuel mixture to enter into the intake manifold. This affects the amount of the mixture available at the time of ignition, and the thrust produced leads to transmission problems. There are many factors that can cause harm to this delicate part. As explained, pressure and heat are the most likely culprits that it has to withstand. Along with these, the type and quality of fuel or the antifreeze used in the car engine may also affect this auto part. The design and quality of the materials used for the gasket, too, affect its functionality. Decreased fuel economy, increase in amount of emissions, and poor engine performance in terms of the generated thrusts and acceleration are but some of the many leakage symptoms.
The malfunctioning of this tiny bit of a car part affects the car's mileage per gallon drastically. If you put off this car repair indefinitely, then one day when you need your car the most, this car problem may force you to carry on without your wheels because of the stalling of your car's engine. You don't need a financial geek to tell you how this situation can hurt you financially. The unexpected expenditure in the form of transportation from the spot where you got into trouble to the towing of the car to a car repair shop, the unexpected expenditure involved, and the like can really cost you dearly in terms of time and money.