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What are Direct Injection Engines?

You may have noticed that some manufacturers have been advertising the engines in their newer vehicles as extra fuel efficient thanks to direct injection technology. Since using such technology is becoming a standard in the automotive industry, it’s important for aspiring automotive technicians to understand how direct injection technology works.

Defining Direct Injection

Direct injection incorporates a fuel-delivery technology that optimizes gasoline engines and allows them to burn more fuel more efficiently. In turn, this improves the engine’s fuel economy and makes it more powerful.

How It Works

A direct injection engine has separate manifolds for air and gasoline. Engines need these two areas in order to work at an efficient level, and direct injection technology separates them into an air intake manifold and a gasoline cylinder.

Instead of separating gasoline and air into two different intakes, regular injection engines combine them and compress them with a piston. The gas and the air are premixed in an intake manifold that lies just outside the engine’s cylinder. A spark then ignites this mixture, resulting in an explosion that drives the piston downward and produces power that’s then sent to the engine.

The major different between regular injection and direct injection engines is that instead of premixing the gasoline and air, a direct injection engine separates the two.

Advantages of Direct Injection

Engines that use the direct injection method will experience more control of fuel consumption. The technology uses a computer to monitor the precise amount of fuel that needs to be injected into your engine and when exactly it needs to happen for optimal efficiency. The injector is located at an ideal point in your engine, which leads to an ideal gasoline spray pattern that breaks up the gas into small droplets. These smaller droplets are combusted and can generate more power and fewer harmful fuel emissions.

Disadvantages of Direct Injection

A direct injection engine is more advanced compared with a regular injection engine. This makes for complex repairs and expensive installation. Because the added parts of a direct injection engine increase fuel consumption at significantly higher pressures than regular injection engines, they have to be able to withstand the pressure and the added heat. This causes the need for more expensive, advanced parts and installation.

While direct injection engines may be a little pricey and complex, there’s no denying that this technology benefits both the vehicles that have them as well as the environment.

Because there are significant positive effects from using direct injection technology in vehicle engines, they’re bound to be used in more and more cars in the near future. This means automotive technicians who know how these engines work and how to repair them will be in demand. Aspiring automotive technicians should aim to learn as much as they can about these engines.

If you’re looking for more information on the future of engines, you can download Automotive Training Center’s free eBook: Clean Diesel: A New Model Comparison Study.

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