Last time we spent some time discussing the importance of the timing belt. Sometimes it makes you wonder what the engineers are thinking when they put what is basically a glorified rubber band controlling major engine components. The job of a timing belt used to belong to a chain and surprisingly, the general reliability of vehicles has increased dramatically in the last 20 years. That being said, your timing belt is not the only hidden engine item that is subject to normal wear and tear. If you have ever had an issue with your engine you know that mechanics can throw out some pretty bizarre names for the parts that need replaced. (Don’t let them tell you that you need an exhaust bearing replaced because they don’t exist.) At Miramar Automotive and Transmission, we make sure to speak in plain terms that everyone can understand. We know that it can be an intimidating experience talking to a mechanic about what is wrong with your vehicle, especially if you are not incredibly knowledgable about cars. That is why we strive to run our shop based on the values of integrity, honesty and compassion. You never need to worry about being talked down to at Miramar Automotive.

The Head Gasket

Now occasionally you may hear the name of an automotive part that just almost seems like it is fake. If you have been around the block a few times you have probably heard of a “blown head gasket”. The name itself could connote a hundred different ideals about what it is, but as entertaining as that would be, a head gasket is nothing more than a complicated seal. The head gasket works like this. The valve train is located in the cylinder head which is mounted to the main cylinder block of the engine. The cylinder head is a complex mechanism responsible for both introducing the fuel and expelling the exhaust. It must meet up precisely with the engine block in order for oil and coolant to lubricate and cool the cylinder head. In between this union, lies the head gasket, a thin sheet of metal that forms a seal between the cylinder head and the engine block. Now, a blown head gasket is not necessarily visible from the outside of the engine and many times the leak is from the inside. So as bad as it sounds, a blown head gasket is not necessarily going to be spewing fluid everywhere but it is important to have it checked when an issue is suspected. This includes white or blue smoke out of the exhaust and could even cause overheating.

In the interest of keeping our clients informed about their vehicles we hope you are enjoying this series about little known parts of your car. At Miramar Automotive and Transmission it is our mission to provide our customers with the best possible service. We look forward to forming a long-term partnership and proving that was truly care about each of our customers. We look forward to hearing from you, book your next appointment today!