Engine Oil Pan
What is an Engine oil pan?
The Engine oil pan is a component responsible for storing the oil that lubricates the engine. With a simple bath-shaped design, it is present in all types of combustion engines, whether diesel engines or petrol engines.
What’s the oil pan for?
The main function is to collect the oil from the engine block and put it back into circulation through the cylinders by the oil pump.
This whole cycle is repeated numerous times to ensure the best possible engine lubrication.
When the engine is switched off, the engine oil is housed in this component thanks to the force of gravity. Then, by removing the oil drain plug, the mechanics are able to remove about 95% of the engine oil thanks to engine oil pan
Parts of an Oil Pan
An oil pan may seem like a simple metal tray, but it actually has a few parts that work together to ensure your engine is lubricated properly.
1. Oil Pan Gasket: An oil pan gasket is a type of sealant between the pan and engine block that prevents oil from leaking from the two parts. It’s usually made from rubber, fiber, or cork ring.
2. Drain Plug: The drain plug is a threaded bolt at the bottom of the oil pan, which is removed to drain oil from the engine during an oil change.
3. Baffle Tray: The baffle tray prevents oil from sloshing around inside of the pan.
4. Windage Tray: Some cars have a windage tray—a metal sheet that prevents oil from contaminating the crankshaft. Some windage trays come with a crankshaft scraper to remove any oil that may infiltrate the shaft.
Symptoms of a Damaged Oil Pan
Because the oil pan is located beneath the vehicle, it may be hard to check for signs of damage. Fortunately, there are other ways to know when it’s time to get a replacement.
1. Illuminated Warning Lights: An oil pan or pan gasket that’s leaking severely can lead to a low oil level, which, in turn, can trigger dashboard warnings, such as the oil pressure and check engine lights.
2. Low Oil Levels: A damaged oil pan or faulty pan gasket can lead to an oil leak that results in a low oil level.
3. Oil Puddles Underneath the Vehicle: Oil dripping beneath the vehicle can indicate a damaged oil pan or gasket.
What Causes Oil to Leak from the Oil Pan?
There are two reasons why oil pan leaks happen: impact damage and worn or damaged gaskets.
1. Impact Damage: Accidents or road debris may cause the oil pan to sustain impact damage and leak oil from the engine.
2. Worn or Damaged Oil Pan Gasket: Over time, the oil pan and gasket may wear out and develop leaks. As the engine ages, cork gaskets may harden and shrink due to extreme heat. If your engine uses a rubber gasket, the gasket may also harden and lose its elasticity, causing oil to leak from the pan.
Benefits of Getting an Oil Pan Replacement
Replacing a damaged oil pan as soon as possible can save you thousands of dollars down the road. A leaking oil pan can eventually lead to a dangerously low oil level that results in internal engine damage. This costs way much more to fix than getting an oil pan replacement.
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