Despite their relatively easy operation, cars are actually very complex machines. Cars need fuel to operate, but what does the engine actually do with it?
In general, a standard internal combustion engine — what the majority of fuel-powered vehicles have today — uses air combined with gasoline to produce power. Of course, it gets more complicated.
Components of an engine
Before diving into how a car engine functions, it will help to learn its basic anatomy (also critical if you need to perform any car maintenance). Take a look at the car engine diagram below, then review the list of the engine’s main components and their function:
- Engine block: Typically made of iron or aluminum, the engine block houses the majority of the parts that make the engine run, including the cylinders, pistons, crankshaft and camshaft. (If you’re popping open the hood, the engine block will