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Car and Truck Tachometers

Cars and trucks have an instrument installed in the vehicle called a tachometer. As it relates to your automobile, it is a gauge that explicitly measures the RPMs (revolutions per minute) of the automobiles engine crankshaft. Tachometers are especially important in manual-shift automobiles to help you to gauge that you're in the right gear.

Why is a tachometer important?

Automobiles need the measurement of the tachometer to alert the driver of excessively high RPM rates. Sometimes, a little generator gets connected to the generating drive shaft. The electric current created by the unit is what provides the basis for the RPM measurement. In some cases, it can calibrate the speed in which the ignition system delivers sparks to the motor.

How does the tachometer work?

The rotation of the engines crankshaft gets displayed on the tachometer. As you drive, you can use this information to determine the correct throttle and gear for the conditions in which you are operating the automobile. The tach has markings which indicate the safe range of rotation speeds of the engine.

If an automobile has an analog dial, the danger of high RPMs is designated by a red marking.

What are the parts of a tachometer?

This device is located by the speedometer and has a dial with numbers that range from one to seven on most automobiles. There is an indicator which points to the figures, which shows the rate of your RPM when the car is in operation. Before the gauge reaches the red danger zone, there is a yellow area that serves as a warning.

What types of tachometers are there?

There are several kinds of tach devices commonly found in automobiles:

  • Digital: These have an LED or LCD layout. They can do mathematical operations and are ideal for monitoring any quantities that are time-based. They can also perform precise measurements and provide a numerical reading.
  • Frequency and time measuring instruments: The frequency measuring device is intended to calculate incoming pulses and high-speed measurements. The time measuring instruments monitor the interval of time between incoming pulses.
  • Analog devices: These have a dial-type interface and needle for indicating rates and do not have the storage of readings capabilities like digital tachometers.
  • Non-contact and contact units: Both of these devices are data acquisition methods. The contact type uses a magnetic sensor or optical encoder. The non-contact instrument uses an optical disk or laser.