How you treat your new car engine will directly affect its long-term performance, efficiency and longevity. Failing to properly run-in your engine will have serious negative effects down the road.
Although this is a controversial topic, we stand by the opinions of the manufacturers – after all, who knows your engine better than the company that made it? There are good reasons most manufacturers ask you to take it easy during the initial running period. Call us conservative, but we recommend the tried and tested method. The moving parts of your new engine need an adjustment period before reaching normal operating conditions, and these conditions are determined by how the engine has been run-in. The run-in involves settling the piston rings and ensuring that the bearings and cylinders wear evenly, but it’s not only the engine that needs a running-in. The transmission, tyres and brakes all benefit from it too.
• We recommend that you warm up the engine before putting it under any load.
• A 2,500 km running-in period is ideal. After this, you can high-rev her away to glory.
• For a petrol engine, don't allow the RPMs to go over 2,500 for the first 1,000 km. After that, you can increase the limit to 3,000 RPMs until 1,500 km and then, gradually increase it to the maximum by 2,500 km.
• For a diesel engine, restrict the RPMs to about 2,200 for the first 1,000 km. After that, you can increase the limit to 2,500 - 2,800 RPMs until 1,500 km. Then, gradually increase it to the maximum by 2,500 km.
• Long highway trips or time spent in bumper-to-bumper traffic is bad for the run-in process. The key to the run-in is to subject the engine to a wide range of RPMs, so you will probably have to alter your driving style and make a point of driving under various conditions.
• Team-BHP recommends that you change your engine oil after the first 1,000 km. As with all new engines, you will find that some metal slivers have found their way into the oil. From this point onward you can stick to the manufacturer recommended intervals.
• Do not use synthetic oil for the first 10,000 km. The impressive lubrication properties of synthetic oil only slow the run-in process.
By following these simple steps you can help ensure that your engine reaches its maximum performance and endurance condition. This will maximize you car’s power, fuel economy and engine life. Many new cars are designed to minimize damage from a poor running-in, but even these engines benefit from the advantages of a proper run-in regime.
Last edited by GTO : 21st November 2013 at 10:15.
Reason: Separating petrol + diesel engine points
The following 60 BHPians Thank tsk1979 for this useful post:
Stick to your manufacturers speed limits.
For example for Indica the sticker on the windshield gives the following limits
In a general case for an engine that maxes out at 4500rpm, stick to around 2500rpm max and only rarely go upto 3000rpm.
After the run in period for around 1000kms or so stick to 3000rpm limit and occasionally take to higher rpms
The following BHPian Thanks tsk1979 for this useful post:
I have a question or two here:
1. The gear changes for different cars.. Maruti recommends some speeds at which to shift. But instinct feels different. Say for example, switching to 4th on 40 km/hr for the swift doesn't always feel like the car really likes it.. there is a bit of a shudder.. so i change at say 50 km/hr where the car transitions more smoothly? So does that make sense or should I shift as recommended?
2. With the ac on, the shifting is different again.. so how do you deal with that?
The following BHPian Thanks MC Mayank for this useful post:
As long as you don't exceed the limits its okay. 50kmph for 4th gear is fine, wherein 40kmph will be a bit low.
When company says shift to 4th gear at 40, its for mileage, runin limits are close to 80kmph for 4th gear.
The following BHPian Thanks tsk1979 for this useful post:
Never run flat out on new tyres fitted to your car. Tyre dies are coated in a release agent to ease the release of tyres when they are ready & that is what gives the new tyres their sheen. This also means that the tyres are not performing to their optimum level till the release agent gets wiped off.
Best thing is to drive you can sedately for about 100-150kms when you have fitted new tyres. Also before driving fast on new tyres ensure that they have gone throught atleast 2-3 heat cycles. Heat cycles mean that the tyre should heat up to its optimum temprature (which should easily happen if you drive for 5-8kms constantly) and then cooled down once you've come to an extended stop.
The following BHPian Thanks iraghava for this useful post:
yes this had to happen...otherwise I was getting ready to post the same...
Let the war begin...
By the way, i am of the opinion, we should stick to run- in instructions... I ran- in my pulsar 180 for 2500 kms... and it is giving me very good mileage along with power... (Dont know how it would have been otherwise... He he)
Hey! I think we need to follow the manufactures advice..as they have invested a large sum just for the Research & Development..
They will be having more experience than us..You can do the opposite only if you think you are more experienced with the car than them..
Take the initial days smoothly and then she is all yours..You can get the best of performance mods for that car..
Also I have seen many college guys using their Pulsars to the limit on its initial days and in the end their bike starts giving wierd sounds..lower topspeed etc..
Last edited by SRK : 20th January 2007 at 08:14.
The following BHPian Thanks SRK for this useful post:
That site that contradicts the existing norms of running in period is thinking too narrow. The automobile is not made up of just the engine. Even if the guy was right about the 20km running in period he has just ignored other friction bearing parts of the car including the oft forgotten tires.
The fine cross honing patterns pertains to the engine bore alone and not the gearbox,tires,wheel bearings, constant velocity joints and brake pads. I hope this puts to rest the misconceptions being spread on the web about the running in period for our automobiles. In my specific case and I own the Palio GTX the running in for the engine stretched to about 9800km even with the use of mineral oil recommended by the company. That was more so because there were no roads in Cochin to properly stretch her legs. Most often I had to putter around in 4th gear. The company specified running in period for the GTX is mentioned in a confusing sort of way on page 112 of the manual under the heading of oil consumption and that stretches to about 5000km. In case of my Junkindica the running in specified was 1000km but the oil consumption then and now is about 1ml for every 1km that I cover but thats another story all together. I top up with about 8 liters of oil from the authorized service center in the 7500km which the Junkindica runs between oil and filter change, the bills of which I keep diligently for future use. Mind you there is no leakage of oil from anywhere on the engine except from the main head gasket area which is the gasket between the head and the engine block. The leakage from there is very minimal though but present all the same. The Junkindica lives up to its name in the end. I hope this was of some help to confused souls after that contradictory article about running in period.
Bye and wear your seat belts.
Last edited by drpullockaran : 21st January 2007 at 14:11.