ELI5, how a gasoline engine such as a car works?


ELI5, how a gasoline engine such as a car works?

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The engine will mix the gas with air and ignite it with a spark. The hot gasses from this explosion expand which pushes against the piston forcing it down. This pushes on a crank making the shaft rotate. The engine will then push the exhaust gasses out the exhaust pipe, suck inn more air and fuel and compress it for the next ignition.

Air goes gets pulled in a tube along with gasoline, then a spark lights this air & gas mixture and the explosion pushes that tube open that also pushes a rod that’s connected to a shaft that eventually turns the wheels. Air comes in from the front of the car, the grill, where it meets a radiator that takes this cooled air and distributes it throughout the engine where it’s needed. Different parts of the engine are also moved by belts. The sparks and explosions and turnings all have to happen in sync as best as possible. Spent explosions are eventually sent out through the exhaust pipe.

A gasoline engine is a metal box that holds explosions and turns them into movement.

The engine will have pistons which are thick metal circles that will move up and down in a cylinder in the engine.

The engine will have 4 strokes. The intake stroke is when the piston drops down in the cylinder and will take in gasoline and air. The compression stroke is when the piston moves up in the cylinder making the space very small for the gasoline and the air. The combustion stroke occurs when a spark is applied in that little space and the gasoline combines with the air to make an explosion, this explosion forces the piston down forcefully. The exhaust stroke is when the piston moves up in the cylinder and pushes the exhaust out of the cylinder. Then the process repeats.

All of the pistons are connected to a shaft, and the movement of the pistons up and down spin that shaft. The shaft is connected to the car’s wheels via a machine called a transmission. The transmission takes the spinning motion of the shaft and turns it into spinning motion for the wheels that push the car along.