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Why The Fuel Economy Of Rotary Engines Is Bad?

As a variant of the internal combustion engine, the rotary engine is an old type in the lot. The engine is quite popular for it offers a smooth run and an improved cooling. But where fuel economy has become the need of the hour, rotary engines fail to provide it. The engine manufacturers already knew how rotary engines did not suit the future scenario, giving way to the introduction of the static engines. The question here is why the fuel economy of the rotary engines is bad. Let’s unravel the truth with our maintenance tips as well!

Why Do Rotary Engines Offer Bad Mileage?

The rotary engine has a constant crankshaft, and the corresponding cylinder block revolves around it. The engine has its plus points and some drawbacks, but the low mileage offered by the rotary engine is the matter of concern.

1. The Inefficient Engines

The thing is; the rotary engines end up producing excessive power. The engines, in turn, are not built to handle the excessive power. As a matter of fact, the more power the more fuel is burnt as the revs of the vehicle get higher. This is the simplest reasons that explain why rotary engines offer a bad mileage.

Rotary engines in cars
Rotary engines is not designed to be economical

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2. Seal Leakages

The temperatures of each chamber of the engine house differ. This tends to be problematic when the diverse expansion coefficients of the materials lead to faulty sealing. Furthermore, a case of seal leakages occurs that results in leakages of combustion gas into the other chambers. Such wastage of gas directly means low fuel economy.

3. Low Compression Ratio

Compression ratio is the overall ratio of the maximum and the smallest volume of the cylinder at any given point within the internal combustion engine. The best compression ratio that has been recorded on a rotary engine is 11:1, which is not okay in terms of what modern engines can offer. The best compression ratio for a petrol engine is 10:1.

4. Long Combustion Chamber

The combustion chamber of a rotary engine is designed to be very long. This may work well to some extent, but the high surface area to volume ratio makes things tricky. You may ask, ”How may it affect the fuel consumption,” to which the answer lies in the extended cooling time of the fluids. If the cooling is suffered, so is the overall fuel economy.

5. The Case Of Fixed Ports

The valves or camshafts are missing in a rotary engine. This problem with the rotary engines leads to the inability of meddling with the valve timings, i.e., the case of “no valve timing.” The port time can only be changed by machining the ports of altering the piston skirt. So, when the valves do not open and close at a synchronized timing, the engine performance deteriorates. In simple words, the rotary engine fuel economy turns out to be bad.

Rotary engines and their working
Rotary engines got poor timing for opening and closing valves

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Wrapping Up

These are the few reasons why rotary engines do not offer good fuel economy. Having understood that, you know why better counterparts are replacing the engine. You should know that the engine is on the verge of extinction as it destroys the efforts to maintain an impressive carbon footprint.

1 Comment
  1. foracr says

    you’re speaking nonsense. rotaries dont have valves like piston engines do, and a camshaft to drive those valves.

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