Auto manufacturers continue to improve their engines with better fuel consumption and lower emissions. They are constantly attempting to reduce any loss from engine power and improve the engine components. The oil pump is one of the areas of a traditional internal combustion engine’s loss of power. Without oil lubricating engine components correctly the engine could suffer from extra wear with the friction of moving parts. Even overheating is a risk if the oil pressure is not delivered optimally.
What are oil pumps?
Oil pumps help circulate an internal combustion engine’s oil under pressure. The oil helps lubricate the bearings, the sliding pistons and the engine camshaft. Oil pumps also have a great effect on keeping the engine cool.
Aftermarket oil pumps offer car enthusiasts options to improve their engine’s performance. Typically this includes high pressure oil pumps and high volume oil pumps.
High Pressure Oil Pumps
While high pressure oil pumps help improve an engine’s lubricating system, they are generally only used in high performance engines. These high performance engines need a well lubricated system to help prevent engine damage when engine speeds reach upwards of 8000 to 9000 RPM. The faster the engine speed the faster the oil needs to move to avoid air being trapped in the oil. This is also why high performance engines will run a lower weight oil.
Another benefit of using a high pressure oil pump is for vehicles operating heavy loads, especially heavy duty trucks. With a higher pressure of oil moving through the engine it can help manage the load by maintaining the thickness of the oil film in the needed areas of the engine.
If you are looking to upgrade your existing oil pump you will want to find the appropriate high pressure oil pump for your car’s make and model. Ford high pressure oil pumps will work best for Ford engines, while Chevy oil pumps will be best suited for Chevy’s.
High Volume Oil Pumps
Although higher performance engines need a higher pressure requirement of their oil pump, the majority of car owners will benefit most from a high volume oil pump. These are cars and trucks with engines that turn slower than 4500 RPM. This type of engine benefits from a larger volume of oil being moved through the engine.
Unfortunately with a higher volume style of oil pump the gears are generally larger to enable moving the large quantity of oil. This has been known to cause the engine to lose some horsepower.
Conclusion: Choose an Oil Pump to Meet Your Needs
Oil pumps are not one-size-fits-all. It’s important to do your research and learn what oil pump will best fit your needs. If you have a high performance engine you will most likely choose a high pressure oil pump. However, if you have a more economy style car a high volume oil pump might be best.