Different Types of Automotive Head Gaskets
A head gasket is one of the important parts of a vehicle’s engine. The head gaskets act as a seal between the cylinder head and engine block. But, there are four types of head gaskets and have different attributes, since all of them are manufactured uniquely.
Let us discuss each of them, but before that let’s get to know the function of the head gasket in a car:
WHAT IS THE FUNCTION OF HEAD GASKET IN A CAR?
Primarily, the function of the head gasket in a car is to seal the coolant and oil passages that run through the engine block and cylinder head. In case the vehicle’s head gasket blows up, the coolant or oil may start to leak. As a result, this can bring an array of other mechanical problems. Head gaskets, therefore, are explicitly important in terms of function and maintenance.
Now you know the working of a head gasket, read on to learn about the types of head gaskets:
TYPES OF HEAD GASKETS
There are four types of head gaskets detailed as under:
A multi-layer steel head gasket is the most common type that is usually found in all vehicles. As per its name, it features multiple layers of steel that are joined together using an elastomer or an adhesive and treated with a gasket coating. Some multi-layer steel head gaskets consist of two or three layers of steel while others have four or five layers. This type of gasket is largely popular as it is capable of withstanding higher levels of pressure than other types of head gaskets.
Made up of solid copper, copper head gaskets are a famous substitute for multi-layer steel gaskets because of their superior level of strength and protection against leakage. However, due to their copper-wise construction, they typically require extra effort to be safely installed in vehicles. For that purpose, mechanics use a special machine called the o-ringing machine that installs the copper head gasket in their designated place.
Composite head gaskets were manufactured and used back in the 1980s and are rarely found today. They are made up of graphite, a strong element, but not as protective against leaks as other materials. Consequently, most manufacturers have stopped manufacturing composite head gaskets which is why they are not easily found today.
The fourth and final type of head gasket is an elastomeric head gasket that uses a steel core with elastomeric beads. It consists of a hardened sheet of steel that is large, flat and coated with elastomeric beads that’s just like rubber. The beads help seal the coolant and oil passages to protect the engine from damage by the leaks.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN A HEAD GASKET BLOWS UP?
It creates havoc inside the engine. A blown-up head gasket also termed corroded or ruptured, causes the seal to break. Coolant can leak into the cylinders, burn up, and cause the car to overheat. Similarly, the oil leaks into the combustion chamber, where it doesn’t belong, fouls the spark plugs and causes an impediment to the internal combustion that is necessary for the engine to put the vehicle in motion.
A properly functioning head gasket that seals the combustion chamber and maintains the pressure produced by the ignition of the fuel, a ruptured gasket does the opposite and wreaks havoc with the operation of the engine.
Consequently, whether you own a new or used car in the UAE, head gasket must be kept and maintained in optimal condition to allow the smooth and efficient running of your vehicle.
If your car’s head gasket has blown, then you should get it fixed by a professional technician or service centre as soon as possible. However, if you are expert enough to fix it yourself then make sure you have the right tools and parts in hand. For that, you can either opt to buy auto accessories and parts online in the UAE or get them from a physical store nearby.
Besides, now you know the types of head gaskets, hence, when you replace them make sure you get the right one for your vehicle.
Stay tuned to UAE’s top auto blog for more information about different parts of vehicles and repair tutorials.