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Cold Water Impact On Hot Engine

Saleh Md. Hassan
June 23, 2017

Many times I have seen people goes bike washing shop for washing their bike with extreme hot engine. Maybe some of them like to see the rolling steam coming over the hot engine and get satisfy with a savage feeling. Oh I am just joking! Whatsoever here I am with the discussion on Cold Water Impact on Hot Engine. It will make you clear about the negative impacts of pouring cold water on a hot engine. Let’s learn in detail.

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Impact of Temperature Change on Matter

Pouring cold water or normal temperature water on a hot engine is really very bad practice. Before going for that specific discussion first we should focus on some physics. What happens when any matter or object gets hot or get cold? What the science happens on matter in terms of temperature change?

Answering those questions under physics we can say temperature has dramatic impact on any object or matter. When Temperature rises the matters molecule shakes on its position. According to increase of temperature it shakes more and after a certain range of temperature molecule start moving from it position.

temperature-effect-on-matter-solid-liquid-gas

In such situation solid matter gets liquid and liquid matter get into gas and gas gets thinner and converts into new character. And in this process the matter size and shape also increases dramatically.

In reverse when temperature decreases the process goes to reverse. Here the molecule comes in tight contact and reduces the space between them. At the last stage it gets most solid object where the molecule have no space between them. In such case it may lose its bonding of molecules; therefore loses strength, flexibility and it gets fragile.

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Impact of Quick Temperature Change on Metallic Object

Hence after that basic science another question comes that is what happens when temperature changes too fast & quick. In quick changing of temperature the liquid and gas responds very fast. Their molecules moves fast, object gets thinner, increased in size, looses shape and vaporized. It also recovers its real character just when idle temperature ensured.

But on solid object especially on metals quick change of temperature has very bad impact especially when it occurs partially on an object. In solid object or metal all the molecule can’t move as fast as quick the temperature rises. Again when temperature falls very quick all the molecule may not come in place accordingly.

In such case the object may lose its real characteristics of idle temperature. Here the solid object loses its flexibility, strength and it becomes fragile. So you can understand the danger point. This term is widely known as thermal shock on metal object.

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Cold Water Impact On Hot Engine

Now coming to our discussion what happens when clod water thrown on a hot engine bike? When water thrown on a hot engine you can see water vaporize so fast. In such case water quickly absorbs the temperature from the outer surface of the crankcase where the inner surface temperature remaining high. So it makes huge difference of temperature on same area of crankcase.

Moreover it doesn’t absorb the temperature from the whole surface equally but from only from where water came in contact. So again you can find huge discrimination of temperature on same crankcase. As a result the crankcase goes under huge thermal shock.

Now you can say you did this thing many and many times and still your bike is ok. So what the reason to be cautious on it? In answer, you’re lucky enough as the bikes engine building material is strong enough to deal of that malpractice. But truth is it has long term bad impact which you may haven’t understood caused by such carelessness. Here are the impacts of throwing cold water on hot engine.

  • Crankcase dramatically looses its strength, regular flexibility and it gets fragile partially.
  • Creates partial microscopic crack which may increase upon time.
  • It damages the gasket and causes oil leak.
  • Head gasket damages and looses the cylinder compression.
  • It damages spark plug and it makes the spark plug ceramic body fragile.
  • It damages the crankcase color, pain work and external finishing.
  • Causes rust, corrosion and oxidization in joints and bolt area.
  • The hot steam is directly liable damaging the electrical part like CDI, ECU and other electric devices.
  • It dramatically reduces cooling radiator working life.
  • It frequently causes cooling system leakage.

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Cold Water VS Hot Engine – What We Can Do?

After learning about the cold water impact on hot engine now question comes what we can do dealing this issue? It’s very simple; get the bike wash after getting the engine come quite in normal temperature. In case of hurry you can start washing the bike without poring water on engine area. If the engine temperature reduced in the mean time you can clean it with water otherwise simply avoid washing with water.

Here another related concern; riding in the rain is quite questionable in terms of this issue. Yes its impact quite same but hopeful thing is rain suddenly doesn’t hit directly the hottest part of the engine. Most of the time before a rain the environment temperature also changes accordingly and the crankcase also gets time to match with that.

Moreover when suddenly rain comes it takes a little time getting rolled on the hot part of the engine. Here again the crankcase outer part gets time to match with the air temperature. Hence again riding in extreme rain it has long term impact on an engine but who cares! Do you care? Truth is I don’t care as I love to ride in the heavy rain!

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So guys that were our discussion on Cold Water Impact on Hot Engine. Wish you have enjoyed our topic and learned about caring of your bike. It is really nice to avoid the intentional thermal shock on our bikes hot engine caused by cold water. But in case of rain we can’t prevent you enjoying the lovely ride. Therefore take care of your bike and happy riding. Thank you all.

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