do automatic cars have a flywheel

Unveiling the Mystery of Flywheel Existence: Automatic Cars Decoded

An automatic car is a vehicle that driver does not have to change gears manually. You may have already known it, but I mentioned it because I thought that someone reading this article would misunderstand it for another type of vehicle. Let’s get on to the point. Do automatic cars have a flywheel? No. Actually, automatic cars have flex plate, which is somewhat similar to a flywheel. All vehicles have a type of toothed wheel but not a flywheel. So, manual cars have flywheels, while automatic cars have flex plates. Let’s dig around further for more information to clear out the doubts.

What Is a Flywheel?

Flywheel enables the starter to start the engine spinning. It is like an advanced toothed wheel in appearance and made out of a heavy metal disk. Flywheel stores energy by spinning. They spin from a higher speed to a lower speed. It is like a disk in shape. The rotational energy stored in flywheels is used to move the car smoothly and to power the devices.

Do Automatic Cars Have Flywheels?

No. Automatic cars don’t have flywheels. Flywheels are basically can be found in manual cars. Some automatic cars have flex plates, and some have different mechanisms, including electromagnetic clutches instead.

Automatic cars are being subjected to vibrations more than manual cars. Therefore, they need mechanical devices that are more compatible with or absorb vibrations. So, the flex plates are the devices that do it better than flywheels. They are not the same as flywheels. Flex plates are thinner than flywheels. Also, the purpose of a flex plate is somewhat similar to a flywheel.

How do Flywheels and Flex Plates Work?

Flywheels and Flex Plates have similar functions. Mainly, they connect the engine to the torque converter. They store rotational energy and help the engine to run smoothly. Flywheels and flex plates both are attached to the crankshaft of the engine but in automatic cars and manual cars, respectively.

Flywheel stores rotational momentum and uses it to run the engine smoothly. Also, the stored energy can be used to apply torque for spinning machinery objects in the vehicle.

On the other hand, flex plates flex forward and backward as the RPM of the engine increases. They absorb vibration better than flywheels. Although the method is different, the purpose of the flex plates is the same as the flywheels. Flex plates also transmit the spinning energy to the torque converter for rotational purposes inside the vehicle.

So, in conclusion, you should know that transmission of rotational energy using flywheels happens manually, while flex plates transmit energy automatically.

How do Flywheels and Flex Plates Work?

Does An Automatic Transmission Require A Flywheel Like A Manual Transmission?

No. As I already mentioned, they have flex plates for the automatic transmission. Also, they use tour converters for higher performance. The speed of the engine is controlled by the flywheel in manual transmission, whereas the flex plate does the same job in automatic transmission. Therefore, an automatic transmission does not require a flywheel.

Is Flywheel The Same As A Clutch?

No. A flywheel is a part of a clutch. In manual cars, the clutch is the pedal that is on the left hand. The flywheel and the clutch work together to help the driver to drive and shift gears smoothly.

VIDEO CREDITS: Lesics YouTube Channel

What Causes A Flywheel To Fail?

The main reason to fail the flywheel is overheating. You can inspect a burning smell or smoke from underneath the vehicle. In these instances, the clutch will also not work properly, and the excessive heat damage of the flywheel will be the issue.

Another cause for the flywheel to fail is the wearing of the flywheel. Rough handling and clashes inside the vehicle will lead to the wearing of the teeth of the flywheel. Also, small stones and gravel can get stuck in the gears. That also might occur clatters inside the car as clutches don’t work correctly in those instances.

When talking about issues with flywheels, you might think that “How many flywheels does a car have?” Generally, there is only one flywheel in the cars with manual transmission. But in the cars that need higher engine performance, there are two flywheels. It is known as a dual-mass flywheel.

To avoid flywheels failing, you should take proper care of them, and maintenance is important. Check for problems in the starter system because any misalignment in there will cause the flywheel to fail.


Can a Flywheel Damage Gearbox?

No. But in severe cases, a damaged flywheel can cause failures in the transmission of energy when shifting gears as it is a part of the clutch plate. And this can cause damage to the gearbox.

Can a Flywheel Be Replaced?

Yes. You can either repair it or replace it depending on the condition of the damage. For example, if the flywheel is only damaged on the surface, you can grind it and restore its original texture. If the flywheel is broken or damaged severely, it needs to be replaced for quality and best performance. Otherwise, it will not be able to store and transmit the energy for necessary components in the engine and vehicle.

How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Flywheel?

As of 2023, the cost to replace a flywheel and other related services for that will cost between 500$ to 1000$. But, neglecting the labor cost, you should get help or advice from an experienced mechanic. It will save you from any future damage, and you can save money and time that way.

Does flywheel make car faster?

No. A normal flywheel doesn’t make a car faster. But a light flywheel increases the revolution speed of the engine by reducing the RPM of the motor. And with that quality, cars with light flywheels are faster.

How does a flywheel work in a manual vehicle?

Flywheels transmit rotational energy manually in vehicles. That helps the engine to start and run. Also, it helps in balancing the vehicle. Flywheel is attached to the crankshaft of the vehicle. That smooths the driving of the vehicle preventing unpleasant feelings that occur by imbalance riding.

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