Q:

What is the purpose of a tachometer?

A:

Quick Answer

A tachometer identifies when it is most optimal to change into a higher or lower gear. Few vehicles with automatic transmissions have a tachometer, but older models might. It measures the total revolutions per minute of the drive shaft. The RPMs are in direct correlation to the gear the vehicle is in, and often limited by it.

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What is the purpose of a tachometer?
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Full Answer

A tachometer measures the total revolutions per minute of the drive shaft. The RPMs are in direct correlation to the gear the vehicle is in, and often limited by it. Running an engine too hard in a low gear can cause teeth and bearings to sheer off due to the high stress placed on these larger components. Higher gears are smaller and able to deliver more of the engine's energy to the drive shaft and the wheels.

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