What’s a Gasket and Why is it Important?

Gaskets are one of a couple leading causes of engine failure here in Great Falls, Montana, and a lot of people understandably don’t quite know what these things do or why they’re so vital. We’re going to look at what they do, what they’re made of and how to keep them lasting longer.

What are gaskets? What do they do? What’re they made of? Gaskets are flexible seals which keep fluids from escaping and/or mixing as well as keep air in or out of places. They’re made of layers of thin steel or sometimes copper, with a tough outer coating of rubber or something similar. There are lots of gaskets in most vehicles, but here are the most significant ones in consumer vehicles: oil pan (keeps oil in the pan while the crankshaft is working), cylinder head (padding for the gap between the head and the engine block) and intake/exhaust manifold (temperature regulation and keeping air in).

How do you spot failure? Failure is usually foreshadowed by loss of flexibility, gaps expanding, coatings being discolored or cracked or buildup of nasty layers of deposits. What can you do to make them last longer? In truth, a regular maintenance regime goes a long way – change your oil regularly, keep your fluids (coolant, steering fluid, antifreeze) topped off and clean and watch your engine temperature.

We want to ensure you know your vehicle as well as we do, so come visit our Subaru service department today and let us help!

Categories: Parts
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