How the Parts of an Automobile Work in Harmony

How the Parts of an Automobile Work in Harmony

The Parts of the Automobile

Have you ever wondered about all of the different components of a vehicle? What do they do? How do the parts of an automobile work together? To give you a better understanding of how it all works, let’s take a look at the basic parts of your automobile. Some basic components of a typical automobile include:

  • Automatic Transmission
  • Battery
  • Distributor and Timer
  • Engine
  • Engine Starter
  • External and Internal Brakes
  • Gasoline Carburetor
  • Hydraulic Jack
  • Steering Gear
  • Vacuum Tank

 Automatic Transmission

The automatic transmission is the most intricate mechanical component on modern automobiles. It contains hydraulic systems, mechanical systems, computer controls, and electrical systems. The transmission is connected to the automobile’s engine. The automatic transmission works with various gear combinations to operate the vehicle at different speeds. The transmission transmits the power from the engine to the wheels. When an engine runs at a certain RPM range, the job of the transmission is to ensure that the power is supplied to all the wheels as efficiently and effectively as possible.


The automotive battery, also known as the lead-acid storage battery, is a device that generates current and voltage in the vehicle. The purpose of this electrochemical device is to provide current to the starter motor and the ignition system while cranking the engine. The automotive battery can also supply additional current to the system if the alternator is unable to meet the demand. It also acts as an electrical reservoir. Electrochemical action can be reversed in an automotive battery which allows the battery to recharge while the engine is in use.

 Distributor and Timer

It is very important that in an internal combustion engine that the igniting sparks occur at the right time in the cylinder. The distributor and timer are the two devices that are responsible for regulating this action. The engine’s camshaft rotates a revolving arm allowing the auto distributor and timer to close contact with the terminals to fire the spark plugs. As the revolving arm moves against the camshaft, the breaker arm stops the flow of current at the contact points.


The engine of a car looks like a big jumble of tubes, wires, and metal to a typical person. An engine includes a block, heads, pistons, valves, and other components. A gasoline car engine uses a mixture of air and gasoline to function. The job of the internal combustion gasoline engine is to enable the car to move by converting the gasoline into motion. As the air enters through the intake in the engine bay, it proceeds towards the throttle plate. This air is then distributed to each cylinder through the intake manifold – which is nothing but a series of passages.

Then depending on the type of engine, fuel is added either by a fuel injection system or by the carburetor to the air-stream. The mixture is drawn into the cylinders where the fuel vaporizes into the air stream. The intake valve closes when the piston reaches its lowest point in the cylinder. Next, the piston moves up in the cylinder compressing the charge. The spark plug ignites the mixture of fuel and air when the piston reaches the top which leads to expansion of the gas. As a result, the piston is pushed downwards with great force providing rotation to the crankshaft. This action is similar to pushing bicycle pedals to generate motion on a bike.

Engine Starter

The automobile engine starter is popularly known as the “Bendix drive”. It works to start the motor in the vehicle. When a driver turns the ignition of a car, the starter initiates the motion of the shaft as well as the motion of the small gear on the flywheel. The starting shock is absorbed by a spring. The spring’s push action starts the car’s engine enabling the flywheel to revolve. This causes the small gear in mesh to rotate on the shaft’s threads while bringing it back out of mesh into its initial position.

External and Internal Brakes

The job of emergency and foot brakes is to stop the vehicle as well as to keep its speed in control. Brake systems include a disk, a drum, Anti-lock brake technology (if installed), and a master cylinder. When a driver presses down the brake pedal, it tightens the brake bands via a toggle action. The brake lever slows the brake bands according to the amount of pressure exerted on the pedal. Using the emergency brake expands the brake band of the drum bearing the same result.

Gasoline Carburetor

The job of the carburetor is to mix air and fuel in proportion before supplying it to the engine. The main supply tank supplies gasoline to the carburetor through the vacuum tank. The carburetor mixes the gasoline with air in order to convert it into vapor.

Hydraulic Jack

The hydraulic jack system attaches to the rear and the front part of the automobile’s frame and chassis. This inbuilt system includes a front suspension hydraulic jack, which centrally mounts between the automobile’s front wheels to the front suspension. It also features a rear suspension hydraulic jack, which is mounted on the rear wheels of the automobile to the rear suspension.

The hydraulic jack system operates in combination with the compressed fluid reservoir tank of the car which holds connections to the rear and front jack outlets. The user can include additional outlets to the compressed fluid reservoir tank for a tire inflating hose.

Steering Gears

Steering gears are one of the most important manual interface systems in an automobile. The job of steering gears is to convert the rotational movement that the user inputs with the steering wheel into straight-line motion. This makes it easy to maneuver the car whenever the user needs to change lanes or to make a turn. The steering system starts with the steering wheel which connects to the steering linkage. The steering linkage connects to the gear system. The basic function of the system is to turn the wheels through steering wheel operation. Most of the modern vehicles have electrically operated steering wheels which translate electrical signals to wheel direction.

Vacuum Tank

The job of an auto vacuum tank is to supply liquid fuel to the carburetor from the supply tank while the engine is running. As the carburetor is at a higher level than the supply tank, the vacuum tank does the job of supplying the fuel. The vacuum force results from the action of a piston which leads to gasoline forced up through the supply tank into the vacuum valve. The float rises, as the tank fills, causing the lever arms to operate. This action closes the vacuum valve while opening the air valve. This allows air to enter in from outside. The gasoline flows to the carburetor as the engine runs. This causes the float to fall with the gasoline level. As the level falls to a sufficient level, the little springs and float operate the valves automatically.

Why Knowing the Parts of the Car is Helpful

Knowledge of the various parts of an automobile is beneficial to anyone as it allows a better understanding of vehicle functionality. Moreover, you will have a better idea when speaking to your mechanic about an issue. Otherwise, there’s always the chance that a mechanic will try to take advantage of you – hopefully not.


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