Combustion Engine

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Combustion Engine
File:Combustion Engine.png
Name Combustion Engine
Type Engines
Physics No
Tool File:Grid Wrench (BuildCraft).png
Stackable Yes (64)
Data Value 161:2
Mod Included BuildCraft

The Combustion Engine is the third tier of Engines. It uses Iron instead of Wood or Cobblestone, making it the most expensive and powerful engine. It runs the fastest and outputs the most MJ per stroke. It needs a redstone current to function. It draws full stacks when used on a Wooden Pipe. It moves a Quarry without delays between each action. The inner tanks can store up to 16 buckets of a single type of liquid (water, lava, oil, fuel).

When using with conductive pipes, a Wooden Conductive Pipe must be connected to the output side (front) of the engine for the pipe to accept energy. After the first wooden conductive pipe, any other Conductive Pipe can be used.


EU/t Output table

Using an Engine Generator:

Fueled By EU/t output EU per bucket Buckets used per hour Buckets of water used per hour
Lava 2.5 EU/t 52500 3.4 buckets / hour 7.3 water buckets / hour
Oil 5 EU/t 55000 6.54 buckets / hour 150 water buckets / hour
Fuel 10 EU/t 572000 1.26 buckets / hour 360 water buckets / hour

Effects of Temperature

A Combustion Engine, like its Redstone and Steam counterparts, will pump faster the hotter it gets. Unlike a steam engine, blue is not its optimal temperature, and it will consume no water when blue. Instead, with a steady supply of water, it will stabilize at Green, which pumps about 5 times for every 4 that a blue combustion engine pumps. A yellow combustion engines pumps around twice as fast as a blue one and a red engine pumps approximately 2.5 times faster than a blue engine.

This table shows how long you can leave a combustion engine unsupervised with no water, either in the machine or the surroundings. Times are total time from when it begins running, completely cold, to the temperature listed.

Temperature Lava Oil Fuel
Green 20:50 10:38 4:10
Yellow 41:40 20:55 8:20
Red 1:02:30 31:25 12:30
Explosion 1:23:20 41:42 16:40

Note that one bucket of lava lasts ~17:30 and one bucket of oil lasts ~9:12, so you can safely put 3 of either in the engine. However, one bucket of fuel lasts longer than 16 minutes, so you can not leave an engine running unsupervised with one bucket of fuel unless you install a timer system that shuts it off at the right time.


Combustion Engines can be powered for a long time without overheating, provided you keep them cooled with water. A Combustion Engine that has become yellow or red for even a few minutes will require two buckets of water to regain green status. Water can be Pumped into them to fill this need. Alternatively, buckets of water can be placed into the engine to keep it filled up. While active, the engine will consume the water stored inside it, after a period in the green status. The current water level can be seen in the engine's GUI. Pumping water into an Engine is much preferable to manually filling it with buckets, because it is guaranteed that the engines will not overheat. 1 pump can handle up to 3 Combustion Engines running Fuel provided the water is distributed evenly amongst the engines. If your engine blows up while powering a Quarry it will destroy it.

Combustion Engines build up heat per stroke. If the engine is forced to rest after two strokes, its heat will drop to zero. By connecting the engine(s) to a Redstone repeater 4/5 clock, a continuous cycle of running/resting can be created, eliminating the need for the expensive pumping systems and space-consuming piping that goes with it. This technique will also eliminate the explosion hazards that buggy pipes often cause.

Power Sources

The Combustion Engine runs on Oil, Fuel, or Lava, or possibly Biofuel Cells which can not be pumped, which can be either deposited into the machine via Waterproof Pipes, or through putting a bucket of your fuel of choice in the fuel slot one at a time. It is recommended to refine the Oil into Fuel using an Oil Refinery, as it is more efficient.

A Combustion Engine also produces power at different rates based on the type of Fuel. For example, an Oil Refinery can be fully powered (green) by 3 Combustion Engines powered by Oil or 2 Combustion Engines powered by Fuel. An oil refinery can only take 3 combustion engines runing on oil at one time.This may be the cause of some explosions as people power their refineries with 4 Combustion Engines only to eventually power them with fuel later, causing problems.

Applying power from an Energy Link either does not heat up the engine or does so extremely slowly. When supplied with power directly from an MFSU, the engine ran for approx. 20 minutes without turning green.


Combustion Engines need to be cooled by water, which can be pumped in with Waterproof Pipes, or added in with buckets. For this reason they are normally used in generation plants connected to machinery via Conductive Pipes. These generation plants can use space efficient designs that allow a Redstone current, water, electrical pipes and fuel to access the engine.

See the Pump page for information on tapping water sources.

Engine Status

The Engine can be four colors depending on it's state:

Blue: The engine is in it's initial (cold) phase.

Green: The engine temperature is stable.

Yellow: The engine is working hard and needs more cooling.

Red: The engine is overheating and will explode if not quickly shut down or cooled.

Video Tutorials

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