Engine Break-In Instructions
We use a break-in procedure that goes against the Old-Wives tale out there.
Due to the smooth cylinder finish in today’s engines we run the engine immediately to seat the rings (grind the ring) to the cylinder before the cylinder becomes a mirror. We have limited time to do this before the roughness disappears. Imagine a piece of sandpaper that gets dull and if you keep sanding it doesn’t cut but just gets hot, well the sandpaper is the honed cylinder finish and the ring is the piece of wood.
Prior to start all fluids be topped off and the car ready to run. We usually supply engine break-in oil otherwise can be purchased through our website here: Click Here
The engine must be setup to start immediately without a lot of false starts and excess cranking. The coolant system must be purged of air before starting; using a vacuum coolant refiller works best. The intercooler system must be purged and circulating fluid
Start the car, DO NOT crank the engine to prime the oil pump, the engine will have instant oil pressure on start, let the car run to cycle the thermostat & fan, check for leaks, etc. When warming up to cycle the thermostat, observe top and bottom hose temps, if both hoses are cool/warm and the temp gauge is rising or you expect the temp gauge to rise and it’s not, then there is a cooling system malfunction that MUST be fixed immediately, The hose temp differential on a warmed up engine should be 50-75 degrees.
Avoid excess idle or very low load operation.
Do not conduct decel operations. Decel operation is an extremely low load condition and reduces ring pressure to the cylinder to zero, polishing the cylinder and removing the roughness. Low speed and baby throttle operation just polishes the rings, we need combustion pressure to push the ring against the cylinder wall and seat in the ring which is accomplished by medium to high load.
Do not over-fuel. Excess rich condition dilutes the thin film of oil on the cylinder causing accelerated ring wear. We have seen rings with 100 miles of use, look like 300,000 miles of wear with the resulting excess oil consumption.
Beware of crankcase vacuum pumps. Many cases of extreme ring wear are caused by poor vacuum pump system engineering.
Never use a vacuum pump on a boosted application, as it increases the pressure differential across the ring increasing ring contact pressure and poor lube. Incorrect PCV engineering has also acted as a vacuum pump destroying rings / cylinders by removing the thin film of oil from the cylinder and excess pressure differential across the ring.
The one common thing from 2019 and 1950 is not to overheat the ring and that is done by allow a few minutes for the ring to cool such as flashing the PCM.
After thermostat cycling and leak check, strap it on the dyno and start making WOT pulls, 1st one 5000-5500, subsequent pulls 5800-6000, after that break-in will be 50%-75% complete, finish the tuning session, then go race.