Piston Ring Maintenance

Piston Ring Maintenance


Piston rings maintain combustion pressure in the cylinder and prevent oil from seeping into the combustion chamber.

Ring failure results in

  • white exhaust smoke
  • excessive oil consumption
  • compromised performance

To verify the need for piston ring maintenance, the technician uses a compression tester to check for low compression readings. The technician may also refine the check by squirting some medium-weight oil into each plug hole, cranking the engine, and repeating the compression test.

If the readings are significantly higher, there is a problem with the rings or cylinder. If no changes are evident, the trouble is with the valves.

A significant drop in pressure in one or more cylinders can be indicative of several problems, including a blown head gasket.

TIP: A broken compression ring may produce a misfire in the affected cylinder.

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Please drive safely.


Written by Maryann Croce

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