Can You Powder Coat An Engine Block? (Explained)

Powder coating the engine block results in a cohesive color scheme under your car’s hood. You can choose to either powder coat the entire engine block or some key components.

Because the engine block mainly comprises a metal, you can safely powder coat it without worrying about damaging it.

When powder coating an engine block, there are certain factors that you need to consider, and that is the safety of plastic components. Powder coating requires heat for it to cure.

There are plastic components that are located around your engine block. Exposing them to so much heat can melt them.

What you have to do when powder coating an engine block is that you will have to disassemble every part and powder coat the engine block separately before returning it in.

can you powder coat an engine block

Will the Powder Coat Warp When Exposed to High Temperatures?

Powder coating can withstand heat of up to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. In an ordinary car, the engine temperature can range anywhere between 195 to 220 degrees Fahrenheit. This falls in the category of how much heat powder coat can take.

Therefore, the powder coat will not warp easily when exposed to the engine’s high temperature. Remember, there are cooling systems installed to prevent engine overheating under your hood.

This is enough to guarantee that the powder coat should withstand the heat, even if It’s not for an extended time. After a while, the color may start fading.

As you have seen from above, powder coating the car engine block does have its risks. One, the powder coat may warp under extreme heat.

The powder coat may not withstand the temperatures in high-performance cars where the engines heat up significantly.

Also, the color will fade after a while because of the high temperature. Therefore, proceed with caution and keep your expectations realistic.

Is Powder Coating the Engine Block a Lot of Work?

We will not sugarcoat how easy it is to powder coat the engine block. It requires time, effort, and dedication. First, as we have discussed earlier, you have to disassemble the engine block.

This prevents the powder coat from getting inside and affecting vehicle performance. We also do so to avoid blasting the surrounding plastic material with a lot of heat since it can melt easily as we attempt to cure the powder coat.

After removing the engine block, you will spray the powder coat, bake it using heat, and put it back inside while connecting the parts as they initially were.

You must have an understanding of your car’s engine system because everything must be returned to the way it was. This is often time-consuming, and that’s why many people pay to have their car engine blocks to be powder coated.

An expert mechanic will know how to remove and re-install the engine block. They will also avoid getting the powder coat on the sensitive areas within the engine block.

What is the Cost of Powder Coating an Engine Block?

You will have to pay a fee ranging from $350 to $600, depending on the size of the engine block. These rates only apply to vehicles that have the machine work done first.

Before hiring a detailer to work on powder coating your engine block, there is one crucial thing you need to do – perform a background check. The engine block is very sensitive, and it needs to be handled with extreme care.

The ideal detailer should prove that they have worked on similar parts in the past. Most are accustomed to powder coating rims and car accessories, but very few powder coat components are found under the hood.

Which Other Parts are Ideal Candidates for Powder Coating?

If you have decided to powder coat the engine blocks, you should know that these aren’t the only parts that can be powder coated. Below are some of the common areas where car owners love to powder coat;

  • Rims

Powder-coated rims are quite durable and retain this look for the longest time possible. Powder coat can withstand harsh environments to which the wheels are frequently exposed.

When you powder coat the rims, you also improve the aesthetics of your vehicle. Powder coat is available in a wide range of colors. You can choose one that blends with your car.

  • Car Accessories

These aren’t the only part that can be powder coated. A bunch of other accessories on your car are also excellent powder coating candidates. Examples include the truck bed rails, nerf bars, and metal racks, amongst others.

Under your hood, you can powder coat the entire chassis or certain engine elements such as the block. You can never run out of options when looking for laces to powder coat your vehicle.

Powder Coating an Engine Block vs. Painting

When you bring up powder coating versus painting an engine block, you will be met by varying opinions.

Some people will lean more towards powder coating, and others will praise painting over powder coating the engine block. We will look at both so that you can make an informed decision.

With powder coating, your engine block will acquire a custom finish that you will always admire when you open the hood. You can argue that paint will give you the same results, but it’s not as durable as powder coat.

Other than its ability to withstand high heat, elements such as debris and dirt are no match for powder coating. Paint can chip easily when applied to the engine block. Even though the latter also prevents rust, powder coating is more effective.

Another difference between painting and powder coating an engine block is that the latter requires a lot of work. We have already discussed how powder coating involves a lot of work, such as disassembly.

With a rattle spray paint can, you have to shake and spray. It’s that easy. The curing of car paint occurs on its own. You don’t need to heat it as you would with a powder coat.

If you want to improve the finish of your engine block, you must weigh the pros and cons of powder coating vs. paint.

DIY vs. Professional Engine Block Powder Coating

For car owners who have made up their minds to powder coat the engine block, the next thing you have to figure out is whether you should do it yourself or hire an expert to do it for you.

Though doable, powder coating an engine block requires a lot of work. And if you lack knowledge of how your engine system works, you may have a lot of trouble with disassembling and re-installing the block once it has been powder coated.

Professional engine block powder coating costs $300 to $600.

Considering the amount of work that goes into powder coating the engine block, it’s worth paying to have it done by a professional.

Also, hiring an expert ensures that the final finish is well done and the powder coat fully cures on the engine block. This process also requires a set of special tools, some of which a DIY enthusiast may not have.

Is Powder Coating an Engine Block Worth It?

If you are doing it for aesthetic purposes, powder coating the engine block isn’t worth all the work or money. A powder coat will make the engine block look better and prevent rust.

That’s all you will get from powder coating the engine block. However, if you factor in the effort, time, and resources needed to complete this project, it’s simply not worth it.

If you are doing it primarily for aesthetics, you should get paint that can withstand high temperatures and spray it on the engine block.

That should ensure your engine block looks aesthetically pleasing every time you pop the hood.

There are instances where powder coating an engine block seems to make more sense, which applies to show cars. If your vehicle exists simply for displays and auto shows, then powder coating the engine block is an excellent idea.

How Long Does Powder Coat Hold Up on Engine Blocks?

This depends on how well the powder coat was applied and the environment it is exposed to. Since the engine block is exposed to high temperatures, it won’t last for a considerably long time.

In most cars, powder coat will last for at least a year or two. When the color starts to fade, you can either apply another powder coat layer or switch to paint.

When shopping for the paint to use on your engine block, ensure that it can withstand high temperatures. Regular paint will break down easily when exposed to high temperatures in the engine compartment.

Are There Drawbacks of Powder Coating an Engine Block?

As great as powder coat is in refining the look of your engine block, it does have some disadvantages. Powder coat tends to stain when exposed to oil or fuel.

The stains on powder coat are hard to get off, and you may have to use harsh cleaners. Secondly, powder coat is tough to re-finish and strip off. Once it starts wearing out, your engine block will look terrible.