Engine Mounts - The Inside Story
Corteco has developed a reputation for supplying the aftermarket with parts that are often consider as “dealer only”,
providing significant profit opportunities to independent factors and repairers. So it should come as no surprise that these specialist parts are now in high demand.
Engine Mounts: The Inside Story
The recent inclusion of engine mounts as part of the MOT, alongside general uncertainty about the variable quality of replacement parts in the UK aftermarket, means that the demand for Corteco engine mounts is riding high. Increasing numbers of vehicles in the UK car parc are equipped with engine mounts that contain very complex technology. However, not all of the available replacement brands provide the same level of complexity and performance that Corteco's expertise can provide.
‘Hydraulic’ and ‘Switchable’ engine mounts are prime examples of the kind of high technology component that garages have sourced directly from dealerships for years. From the outside, engine mounts can look the same, but appearances are deceptive. Inside, it's a very different story. Let us take a closer look at the ‘Switchable’ engine mount (Diagram 1).
Diagram 1: 'Switchable' Engine Mount
Absorption rates are a key factor. These are designed to reduce the idle speed stutter that is associated with diesel engines. With a lower able spring rate, the absorption properties are specifically adjusted to match conditions experienced at idle speeds and with higher RPM operations.
This inside story of high technology is repeated throughout the range to include products such as Electrically Switchable Hydro Mounts.
Diagram 2: ‘Hydraulic’ Engine Mounts
It's worth remembering that all engine and gearbox mounts are not the same and that it is what is inside the rubber casing that really counts. Many low cost alternatives contain little more than solid rubber (Diagram 3) which is completely ineffective and highly inappropriate for the job.
Top Strut Mounts: Inside-Out
Top struts are safety critical items which is why it is important to select top struts from a top quality brand, such as Corteco. Any damage to the suspension strut or strut mount can have a detrimental impact on road safety; braking distances are extended, contact with the road is reduced, while steering and cornering ability rapidly deteriorates.
Torsional Vibration Dampers
Without a TVD, at certain speeds these vibrations could damage the crankshaft. The TVD reduces vibrations transmitted from the crankshaft to the belt and other the auxiliary drive components. It also makes a significant contribution to reducing noise and improving overall ride comfort.
TVDs are not a universal fit. In fact, Corteco ensures that each one is matched to and balanced for, each individual model and this is reflected in the rate of wear of each part. It is also worth noting that not all TVDs are the same and that once again, it is what is inside that matters. For example, a TVD without the correct rubber element would have no damping effect and the consequences could be disastrous for the engine.
Correct installation is vital and Corteco pulleys are supplied "installer friendly", complete with mounting instructions that include detailed information and images for each application. Essential details such as tightening torques, tensioning screws and the use of special tools are included.
Although some TVD bolts may be common to a number of different vehicle models, TVD bolts in general are not a universal fit. The bolts are designed to 'stretch', which means that used bolts must never be re-fitted. Corteco is helping to make this clear with the inclusion of bolts and TVDs in the form of TVD kits that will be available in the aftermarket in the second quarter of 2013 .
Worn TVDs can adversely affect other components in the drive. Installers are advised to fit a new belt whenever the TVD is replaced. Careful inspection of other auxiliary components should also be made at this time, as their performance may well have been compromised.
There is a growing trend amongst garages to handle light commercial vehicles, which is why the Corteco range of suspension strut mount includes references for popular LCVs: Renault Traffic, Ford Transit, Peugeot Boxer and Mercedes Sprinter are good examples.