Frequently Asked Questions

How soon can I get my engine?
The length of time it takes us to deliver your engine depends greatly on the volume of work we have. Please check with our representative for current delivery schedules. Please be aware that our busiest time is the months before the Reno Air Races!

What's your warranty period?
The engine warranty is prorated at 40 hrs per month based on the TBO of the engine.

Using the Continental IO-550 as an example. TBO is set at 1700 hrs. 1700 divided by 40 equals 42.5 months or roughly 3.5 years.  Therefore, if you needed to use your warranty after, say 850 hours of use. Using the previous formula (850hours/40hrs a month =21.25 months of use) you would have used half the engine TBO life, and therefore would be responsible for half the cost. This is a standard warranty and identical to what Lycoming and Continental provide.

Where Performance Engines Warranty differs:
For the first year we provide a 100% warranty. Regardless of proration time or actual use. In the case of Experimentals, were the engine can sit around for a longer period of time before it is flown. As long as you document that you followed the preservation instructions and kept a log, your warranty doesn't start until the day the DAR signs off on your plane. Click here to view our Certified Engine Warranty Certificate and click here to view our Experimental Engine Warranty Certificate.

What does “blueprinting & balancing” mean?
Every engine and engine part has an optimimum running clearance and weight. This information is available in the original manufacturers engineering blueprint. Due to the manufacturing process and the elevated cost of maintaining these optimums a plus/minus tolerance factor is added by the OEM. On the other hand, at Performance Engines we maintain the tight blueprinted specification. For example, an OEM Stock piston has a weight tolerance of 14 grams differential for opposing bays, our tolerance is 1 gram. We retain the 1 gram rule throughout the building process. 

Every moving engine part is either Dynamically balanced or Static Balanced (depending on the part). While an OEM Crank Shaft can be as much as 25 grams off balance dynamically, ours will be less than 1 gram off!

What does flow balancing mean?
Sometimes it is referred to as “Flowing” which is an incorrect term, it is actually Flow Balancing and includes several steps in order to optimize the engines induction and exhaust performance.

Essentially, once the Flow Balancing process is completed all the cylinders on the engine will process the exact same Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) (within 1%) at each progressive .050” openning of the intake and exhaust valves.

First we port and then polish the entire induction and exhaust tracts. Secondly we perform a three angle valve job on valve seats followed by backcutting valve angles.  (This totals a five angle valve job!) This allows a higher volume, to flow with greater effeciency to and from the combustion chamber producing more Horse Power.

Below are links to our flow charts for selected engines:
Lycoming IO-320
Lycoming O-360
Lycoming IO-580
Continental IO-550
Continental TSIO-550

What does flow balancing and Blueprinting & Balancing do for me in the real world?
This intricate and very specialized process improves overall fuel efficiency throughout the power curve, offers lower and more even engine temperatures, furthermore it lowers the engines peak EGT due to a more efficient combustion chamber. An engine which has been Flow Balanced and Blueprinted & Balanced will run smoother, will have increased torque and horsepower. These engines have increased reliability and higher TBO’s. Flow Balancing allows a higher volume, to flow with greater efficiency to and from the combustion chamber producing more horsepower.

What does Nickel Coating the cylinders mean?
Nickel Coating is a trademarked process called CermiNil™ and is a patented process owned by Engine Components, Inc. (ECI).  In this plating process extremely hard silicon carbide in a nickel-based matrix is applied to the cylinder walls of either used or new cylinders.  Since nickel does not rust and is extremely hard it makes the cylinder walls last a lot longer. With over 120,000 cylinders in the field Nickel Coating is here to stay.

Do you modify the cam on experimental engines?
We modify cams on all our high performance experimental engines. We start by using a brand new OEM cam and modify the lift and duration. Also, when the cam is installed it is properly degreed, this optimizes the valve timing and increases combustion efficiency.

What is the difference between Sand Cast Piston vs. Forged High Performance Pistons?
High Performance forged pistons have a dimensional tolerance of 0.0001”. Manufactured with aerospace grade 2618T-61 aluminum these pistons are approximately 40% stronger and more dense than OEM Cast pistons. Also, Performance Engines Pistons are balanced to within 1 gram of one another in opposing bays. OEM pistons tolerance is 14 grams.

Will I have problems with detonation with a 10:1 compression ratio?
It is important to mention that regardless of the compression ratio on a particular engine it is possible to make it detonate by leaning too agressively. This said, if you use 100LL a 10:1 compression ratio will not increase your chances of detonation. As an example of this, Lycoming’s Helicopter engines all run 10:1 compression ratios and there is no reduction in TBO, nor higher incidences of detonation.

An important note regarding the subject of 10:1 pistons is: Your peak EGT will be slightly lower than before due to increased efficiency in the combustion chamber.

Do you have any lightweight starter/alternator options?
Your engine will come standard with a Lightweight starter. Lightweight alternators are available on all Lycoming models and some Continental models. However, overall weight depends on voltage and amperage requirements.

Can I talk to some pilots who are using Performance Engines?
Yes. Please visit our testimonials page.

Are all engines test run?
Engine rebuilding standards call for a two hour run in before engine delivery. At Performance Engines we Test Cell run our engines for three and half hours to ensure they are properly seated. During this time we fine tune and adjust all engine parameters to maximum horsepower, idle speed, mixture, idle cut-off, adjust fuel pressure, adjust oil pressure. This service ensures that when our customer receives their engine in top performance and ready to go.

How are the motors finished?
Finally we finish our motors with the highest quality three part Epoxy paint
(click for color chips). After a careful and methodical preparation the chosen color is applied and then baked onto the desired surfaces. This high grade epoxy paint is temperature resistant and extremely durable. Moreover, it looks fantastic! Additionally we provide a chrome package that includes valve covers, push rod shroud tubes and intake tubes to further enhance the look. (Chrome parts will vary to certain engines)

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