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Purpose of Motor Covers? #5209450 09/10/19 05:32 PM
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tc1446 Offline OP
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Almost all cars come with covers that hid most of the actual motor so that is about all you see when you raise the hood. I recently pulled the cover off of my Kia Soul and it had a thick layer of foam insulation underneath. I can't hear any difference in the sound of the motor without it. Other than "looks", is there any real purpose for these covers?


'14 Kia Soul, 2.0L (29K)
'13 Accord EX-L 2.4L (110K) M1 & FU
'00 Ford Ranger 4.0L {69K} M1 & FU
'18 Polaris Slingshot 2.4L GM (QS & Bosch Cart.)
'07 Kioti CK-30 (Delo & Wix)
Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209453 09/10/19 05:37 PM
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ad244 Offline
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So you cant hear the rod knock as bad when it's in warranty

Last edited by Kestas; 09/10/19 07:04 PM. Reason: No need to completely quote the first post in the second post.
Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209458 09/10/19 05:41 PM
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Kira Offline
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Other covers have no foam etc.

I think "looks" is it. Covering the organized rats' nest of scraggly wires and plugs.

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209460 09/10/19 05:52 PM
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atikovi Offline
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Helps keep engine heat from damaging paint on the hood.

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209467 09/10/19 06:00 PM
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ctechbob Offline
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Lets people that care about cars know that you gave a flip during your ownership to keep up with them when they're looking at buying your used car?

I actually used that as a measure when I bought my TL. 8 times out of 10 the battery cover is missing and that was actually a turn off when I was looking.


2008 Acura TL Type S-155k*
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Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209472 09/10/19 06:07 PM
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skyactiv Offline
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It made a sound difference on a 2012 Mazda3 my wife had. The Mazda had a DI engine and the injectors were louder with the cover off.


Wife: 15' Audi A4 quattro 6 speed manual
Me: 13' VW GTI 3 door 6 speed manual
2018 Elantra Sport 6 speed manual


Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: ad244] #5209510 09/10/19 07:06 PM
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slacktide_bitog Offline
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I like the one from the first-gen Kia Sedona:

[Linked Image from images.hgmsites.net]

Originally Posted by ad244


So you cant hear the rod knock as bad when it's in warranty


LOL

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209514 09/10/19 07:13 PM
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I take it off in summer to improve airflow and put it back on in the cooler fall/winter months. Have I noticed an actual difference in coolant temps, no. Have I noticed a discernable difference in engine noise off or on in the cabin, no.

But I do it none the less..😂

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209517 09/10/19 07:14 PM
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Reddy45 Online Content
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It's 1 additional thing for the mechanic or body shop to forget to install.

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209523 09/10/19 07:20 PM
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92saturnsl2 Offline
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It's there for aesthetics, sure, but mostly it's there for sound deadening. The foam lining under the hood is what insulates the paint from the engine heat, the engine cover has little or nothing to do with the paint.


1985 F-250HD 7.5L 4x4 135k- Castrol GTX 15w-40
04 Odyssey EX 190k Valv. Durablend 5w-30
96 Maxima GLE 268k Shell Rotella T5 10w-30
07 Chrysler Pacifica Limited 4.0L 140k Castrol Edge 0w-30 Euro
Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209527 09/10/19 07:24 PM
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02SE Offline
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As mentioned sound suppression and aesthetics for the majority of the general public that don't know anything about engines, and just like the 'finished look' a cover provides.

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209555 09/10/19 07:56 PM
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pitzel Offline
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I always thought those covers were 'maintenance deterrents'. As in, they want customers to think that engines are just black boxes that cannot possibly be at all fixed without fancy-dancy factory tools and training.

In the sales process, they may also reduce the perception of complexity, and thus, things that can break.


Change your thinking...not your oil!
Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209556 09/10/19 07:56 PM
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Eddie Offline
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Helps keep the engine clean, helps with noise and in some cases it directs air over the cylinder head. I always keep them on for these reasons. Ed


2014 CX5 Touring 2.5L :-)
Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209580 09/10/19 08:20 PM
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When I worked for one of the auto manufacturers in the 80s, they had a task force called the Underhood Appearance Group, making sure the parts manufactured didn't look too odd when the hood is lifted. They didn't like the Prussian blue used on the cast aluminum master cylinders being built. It was there for crack detection during manufacture.

I guess they gave up and just went with an engine cover.

For two cars in my stable I took the engine covers off and put them on the shelf. They'll go back on when I sell the car.

Considering the troubling trend of tight underhood space and designers having more trouble trying to shed heat from the engine, and specifying more heat resistant materials, cars would be better off without these covers.

Re: Purpose of Motor Covers? [Re: tc1446] #5209674 09/10/19 10:08 PM
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rubberchicken Offline
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About 15 years ago, I read an article in either Motor Trend or Car and Driver that was talking about the trend towards aesthetic covers vs. cast and machined engine parts that were "beautified ". The article said that it was cheaper to design in a plastic cover to cover up an ugly engine, than compared to a pretty engine with nice intake, valve covers, hoses etc. About the same time, a similar trend was noted in the motorcycle industry. I am not sure if one trend predated the other, but it seems to be a reasonable explanation.

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