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car parts

Car fun

Auto Parts 101: Car Component Functions & Terminology

June 10, 2019

Can you name any of these car parts? Take the quiz; I’ll wait.

So, how’d you fare? Are you as knowledgeable as a mechanic or did you flunk your exam in spectacular fashion? If you’re part of the latter group, it’s time to enroll at the Lauren McCarthy Online Summer School, where you’ll receive an introductory lesson on the most common car parts and how they function to make a vehicle do what vehicles do.

And when I say “enroll,” I of course mean “review this huge list of car parts and terms that I’ve compiled.”


1. Turbocharger – The function of a turbocharger is to significantly increase an engine’s horsepower without affecting its overall weight. How does it work? They are a forced induction system that compresses the air going into the engine. When the air is compressed it allows the engine to squeeze more air into the cylinder. This, in turn, allows more fuel to be added, which then results in a powerful explosion in each cylinder.

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Under the Hood

Everything You Need to Know About Coolant

January 4, 2014
Sometimes the only way to understand and take care of your car is to roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty. Thankfully, this time we’re only going to get our hands dirty figuratively: we’re going to learn about car parts! Woo hoo! 🙂 Though it’s not the most glamorous topic, car parts are the nuts and bolts that keep your car getting you from Point A to Point B. They do a lot for us on a day-to-day basis, and learning a little more about them can help extend the life of your car. And who doesn’t want that? First, let’s talk about coolant (also known as anti-freeze). Simple property, important job I picked this term because it’s a common word that gets thrown around when your car has problems. It’s an essential part of a happy, healthy running car. Usually a mix of water and ethylene glycol (a syrupy liquid), coolant is a simple property with an important job. Coolant helps to: -Prevent your engine from freezing -Keep the water pump running smoothly -Keeps rust from forming on your car It’s all about team work With the help of the radiator, water pump, hoses and thermostat, the coolant allows the engine to function properly by preventing overheating. Because the engine produces high temperatures but needs to stay cooler to run, having your coolant at the optimal PH level and freeze point will keep your engine running and your car in motion. (Coolant can turn acidic and start eating away at the metal of the engine if you don’t maintain it!) Here’s how to make sure everything is A-OK under the hood: -Change your coolant every 2 – 3 years depending on the manufacturers recommendations -Check the freeze point of your coolant with an anti-freeze tester available at any auto parts store -Have your coolant system flushed every 5 years to remove corrosion that builds