Common Causes and Symptoms of Piston Ring Failures

Diesel engines are still one of the leading machinery used across industries today. Initially used only in labor-intensive sectors like manufacturing and agriculture, diesel engines are now a vital part of the transportation industry that gives truck owners better fuel economy. Along with this, the diesel engine is also more durable and has a longer life span.


As diesel engines are designed for heavy-duty tasks, truck owners must regularly maintain their diesel engines to keep up the optimal diesel power performance. Over time, diesel engines experience significant stress, primarily if it is used for towing or long-distance travel. Among the essential elements of a diesel engine, truck owners should protect piston rings the most.


Uses of a Piston Ring


A diesel piston system comprises multiple piston rings with various functions that help keep the engine running. The primary function of the first ring or the compression ring is to completely seal the inside of the combustion chamber and maintain airtightness.


The wiper ring is the other ring that keeps excess gas from leaking to other piston parts. This ring has a taper angle face that helps wipe the gas when the piston moves to the crankshaft.


Piston rings also control the oil that passes through the cylinder walls. With this, the oil control ring ensures that there is only a minimum amount of oil in the chamber walls to prevent entering the combustion chamber.


Causes of Piston Ring Failures


Amid the heavy workload that diesel engines experience, the piston rings receive tremendous pressure from the combustion chamber that can cause failure to perform its engine function. One of the reasons that can affect the performance of your piston ring is incorrect assembly. It is one of the common causes of failure in piston rings, leading to a noticeable upward bend on the broken side of the rings once it fails.


Another cause of piston ring failure is damage to the oil control ring. It is highly probable that the piston rings are damaged if they consume an unusual amount of oil as it functions.


Symptoms of a Failing Piston Ring


Learning about the different causes of piston ring failures can help truck owners, as well as recognize some of the symptoms once it happens. The following are some of the signs and symptoms that you can look out for to see if you need to replace your piston rings:


  • Unusually high oil consumption
  • Decreased acceleration rate
  • Excessive exhaust smoke
  • Oil in the air intake
  • Weak truck performance


For more information about the causes and symptoms of piston ring failures, here is an infographic from Pure Diesel Power.


Read More: Diesel Exhaust System: Things you need to Know before Buying