The Ultimate Engine Quiz


By: Robin Tyler

6 Min Quiz

Image: Getty Images via Coneyl Jay

About This Quiz

A car without an engine is pretty useless, isn't it? Unless you have someone to push! But let's be a little more serious. The engine on your car is nothing short of an engineering miracle. So many parts all working in perfect unison. And their sole aim? Convert the power your engine produces into energy. And in that way, you have a mode of transport that can get you from A to B. Those parts need to work in perfect harmony to make your engine purr. But that's not all that is expected of them. They need to work efficiently as well. Why? Well, an engine that doesn't run properly is just going to get worse over time. And you know what that means. A debit to your bank balance in the future.

But how much do you know about the internal combustion engine and car engines in particular? Do you know your exhaust manifolds from your mufflers, your oil pump from your fuel pump or your spark plug from your glow plug? If car engines are your thing, then this is the quiz for you! Do you think you can beat the chasing pack and take the checkered flag first in the ultimate engine quiz?

Of these options below, which one brings the fuel to the engine?

The fuel line connects the gas tank of a vehicle with the engine. It is tasked with bringing gasoline from the tank where it is stored to the engine when it is started and running. The gasoline is passed through a filter to remove any impurities in it. Impurities, if not removed, can damage the engine leading to costly repairs.


Identify the car part that connects the spark plugs to the distributor.

The distributor on the car is connected to the spark plugs by hi-tension leads. The number of leads coincides with the number of cylinders and spark plugs the engine has. So a four-cylinder engine will have four spark plugs with four hi-tension leads.


All of the electrics on a car are powered by which part below?

The alternator plays an important part in the electrics of your car. Not only does it ensure that the battery remains charged, but it also supplies the power for all other electrical systems.


This engine part is often abbreviated to SOHC.

The single overhead camshaft refers to an engine with one camshaft. It operates both the exhaust and intake valves. This is a much simpler engine than a dual overhead camshaft design.


Name the part that connects the piston to the crankshaft, please.

The connecting rod forms the mechanical link between the piston and crankshaft. It converts the up and down motion to the crankshaft's rotary motion. This, in turn, is passed to the wheels of the vehicle through the driveshaft.


Piston pins are also sometimes called this.

A piston pin is known as a wrist pin. It's a tubular metal shaft that attaches a piston to a connecting rod. It moves when the piston moves up and down within the cylinder.


From below, name the part found on the cylinder head of the engine.

Head bolts are sometimes referred to as cylinder head bolts. These secure a cylinder head and gasket to the engine block. Together with the gasket, they help ensure a tight seal.


Name the engine part found between the crankshaft the engine block.

The main bearings are found between the crankshaft and the block. The crankshaft rotates on these bearing. They are kept lubricated by engine oil.


An essential part of the engine, this helps to keep the lubricating liquid as clean as possible.

Oil keeps all the moving parts of an engine lubricated. An oil filter helps to remove impurities in the oil that might damage the engine. Generally, the oil filter is changed when your car is serviced.


Can you identify the part that gets gas from the tank to the engine?

A fuel pump makes sure fuel gets from the area where it is stored (the fuel tank) to the engine where it is burnt to help propulsion. A broken fuel pump means the engine will not receive any gas and the car will not go.


Turn the key and this vital car part springs into life. What is it?

When you turn the key of your car, the starter motor begins the combustion process by rotating the engine. By doing so, it sets the whole process in motion in which the fuel/air combusted.


The _________ allows the fuel/air mixture into the cylinder through the intake ports.

This part is essential to how your engine operates. It allows the fuel/air mixture into the cylinder of the engine where it will combust, causing the engine to run. It does this by evenly distributing the air/fuel mixture to the intake ports.


Identify the engine part from the list below. It connects a range of other parts including one that rotates.

This belt, made from rubber, connects some components of the engine including the cooling fan, alternator, and the crankshaft pulley. Sometimes, fan belts can wear and make a terrible noise. They need replacing at this point.


Which engine part helps to regulate temperature within the engine?

A thermostat ensures that coolant is only pumped from the radiator once the engine has warmed up sufficiently. The coolant is kept in the radiator up until that point. Once it has passed through the engine, it returns to the radiator.


Which part listed below opens and closes within the inner workings of the engine?

The valves within an engine open and close in sequence to let the air and fuel mixture in. They then seal when combustion takes place and before letting the gases produced out.


Which of these is found only in turbocharged engines? Essentially, it cools the air compressed by the turbocharger.

Found in turbocharged engines, an intercooler reduces the temperature of the air compressed by the turbocharger. This makes it denser when it is pushed through the engine, which then produces more power.


Without this complex system, your car won't start.

This system helps to start the engine by generating a spark that causes the air-fuel mixture within the combustion chamber to ignite. It includes parts such as the starter motor, spark plugs and more.


This small part of your engine makes sure the piston remains in place.

The piston pin clip is used to keep the piston in place. It is secured on both sides where it is attached to the actual piston pin. The piston then moves up and down within the cylinder.


This circular part forms a seal with the cylinder wall. Can you name it?

This ring helps to prevent loss of compression within the engine. The compression ring is a piston ring. It forms a seal with the cylinder wall. A loss of compression will see the engine run rough and not as efficiently as it should.


When the fuel/air mixture is burned within the engine, it is released into the exhaust system through the _______?

An exhaust valve is a camshaft driven valve found in the cylinder head of a car's engine. It releases exhaust gases after the combustion process of the fuel/air mixture. These will exit the vehicle through the tailpipe.


This counterweighted engine shaft helps offset unwanted crankshaft vibrations. Do you know what it is?

The balance shaft is a counterweighted shaft found within the engine. Its only purpose is to help offset any unwanted vibrations from the crankshaft within the engine.


Name the part listed here that would only be found in a diesel engine.

Glowplugs are only found in diesel engines. They form a crucial part of the starting process of the vehicle. They do this by heating up the engine to ensure that it fires on starting. A cold diesel engine simply cannot start effectively.


This part helps to reduce friction between various components and comes in different sizes.

A bearing is a curved metal piece that reduces friction between components. It comes in many different shapes and sizes. Bearings are found throughout the engine of your car.


Which of these parts mentioned here help boost car performance?

In simple terms, a turbocharger pushes more air into the engine. This helps the engine create extra power as more fuel is burned. A turbocharger fitted to an engine will significantly increase performance.


Found throughout your engine, this part has teeth!

A sprocket is a wheel with a set of teeth on the outer circumference. It drives items like the chain or timing belt. Normally, a sprocket will turn on another sprocket of a different size.


Of these parts below, which moves in an up and down motion within the cylinder?

The piston fits snugly within the cylinder of the engine. It moves ups and down in the cylinder and is attached to a connecting rod. The number of pistons a car has depends on the engine type. For instance, a six-cylinder engine will have six pistons.


Where is oil stored when the engine is not running?

Also called the oil pan, this is the reservoir where the oil used to lubricate the engine sits when it is not running. When you change your oil, a small bolt is removed from the sump to drain the oil.


Dirty gas can ruin your engine. This helps prevent it.

A fuel filter will help to remove impurities that might be in the gas which, if they get into the engine, can cause complications. Impurities can come from the gas itself or in older cars, they might be from a gas tank that is corroding.


When coolant freezes, this ensures that pressure is relieved by expanding. What is it?

The expansion plug provides pressure relief. This is necessary when coolant expands and freezes, which often happens in areas with colder climates. If you live in a place with mild winters, this is not something you need to worry about.


This small part controls the rate of oil consumption within the cylinders of the engine. Can you name it?

The oil control ring controls oil consumption within the cylinder. It comes under the umbrella of piston rings. A sign of an engine using too much oil is white smoke from the tail pipe.


Bolted to the cylinder head, this creates a protective cover. What is it called?

The valve cover is bolted onto the cylinder head. It acts as a protective lid. The cover gasket, on the other hand, is placed between the valve cover and the cylinder head where it helps to create a tight seal.


This part is filled with an element on the periodic table. Name it, please.

The sodium-cooled valve is filled with sodium. But that's obvious, right? When heated, the sodium melts and helps to cool things down within the engine.


Also commonly called a sleeve in engine lingo, can you name this part?

The cylinder liner is also known as a sleeve. It's a replaceable, hollow tube that fits into the cylinder bore. The piston then fits into this sleeve where it moves up and down.


Without these, the car won't start. What part are we talking about?

Essentially, spark plugs are the most important factor in a vehicle starting. They provide the spark that ignites the air-fuel mixture which starts the motor and keeps it running.


The air entering the engine must be clean before it takes part in the combustion process. This does the job of cleaning it.

An air filter ensures the air entering the engine, which is used during the combustion process, is kept clean and free of any particles which may damage the engine.


Explore More Quizzes

About Autoversed

Welcome to Autoversed: your online auto destination. If you consider a vehicle more than just means of transportation; if you treat your ride with love and care; if, even after years of driving, the feeling of accelerating hard on the open road still gets you revved up – you’ve come to the right place.

Whether you’re a daily commuter looking for a reliable ride, a car enthusiast thinking about your next hot rod, or a parent who needs to get the kids from A to Z, Autoversed has something for you. We’ve got the lowdown on hot exotic rides, pricy luxury vehicles, eco-friendly green machines, rugged off-roaders, and more. Come take a look!