An endoscope consists of a camera on a flexible stem with a display or USB plug. With an endoscope (literally: “inside viewer”) one can look in hard-to-reach places in the engine compartment or in areas such as the cylinder. In this way, wear, contamination or defects can be traced without having to disassemble many parts.
After removing a spark plug, the camera, fitted with a flexible stem, can be guided inside. Luxury endoscopes feature an LCD display and buttons to save screenshots to the SD card. Inexpensive versions can be plugged into a computer's USB port or even a phone as a webcam.
Examples that can be detected with an endoscope are:
- a faulty head gasket, causing coolant to enter the cylinder. Pressurize the cooling system to perform this check;
- dirty intake valves can be traced to slide the camera into the intake manifold via the air intake pipe;
- scratches in the cylinder wall and defects in the piston can be detected by inserting the endoscope into the cylinder through the spark plug hole. To check the cylinder wall, the relevant piston must be placed in the ODP.