One of the key parts of the engine is the intake manifold, whose main role is to ensure that the right air-fuel mix arrives on time at each of the engine’s cylinders. This small part has a big boost to the car’s overall performance and a blown intake manifold gasket can make the entire system less efficient as the air-fuel mixture will be inaccurate, and some of the gases will escape.
The intake manifold gasket works to seal the gaps between the air intake manifold, the engine block and the various cylinder heads. Gaskets can be made of a variety of different materials including cork paper, soft metal, rubber, and asbestos. The makeup of the gasket will determine whether or not it will be long-lasting or prone to wearing out quickly. Nearly all gaskets wear out over time due to the constant exposure to toxic engine fluids, gases and the pressure and extreme heat of the environment.
When you’re checking your intake manifold gaskets for wear, be sure to check the mounting bracket as well. All of these parts are under tremendous pressure and stress and can fail quickly once there’s a crack in the material.
Here are some tips to note on material when purchasing your intake manifold gaskets:
Traditional rubber: Rubber can be used in the production of automotive gaskets; the high flexibility and water resistance make it an ideal material for this usage. Rubber is also much less expensive than some of the Teflon-made gaskets. If money is a key concern, choosing a rubber intake manifold gasket can save you a good chunk of change.
Metal: Metal is one of the most durable materials for the creation of vehicle gaskets; however, since it’s a good conductor it can eventually cause aluminum cylinders to overheat over time.
Nitrile rubber: Nitrile rubber is more expensive than traditional rubber, but it is more resistant to fuel, oil and other chemicals that can cause other rubbers to break down prematurely.
The variety of materials that are available to make intake manifold gaskets will all work acceptably, it just depends on how much you’re able and willing to spend to get this part replaced.
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