Automotive Glossary

Automotive words, phrases and abbreviations.

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Shift Timing

The point at which an automatic gearbox changes gear.


A thin metal sheet or washer used between two components to adjust free play. Shim material is produced in standard sizes.


Side to side movement of the wheels that causes the tyres to lose some grip on the road.

Shock Absorber

Method of dampening suspension spring shock oscillation. Damper.

Short Circuit

A short circuit is one that allows a current to travel along a different path from the one originally intended.

Short Engine

Engine block containing crankshaft and pistons. Usually referred to when being replaced to overhaul the engine.

Short Motor

The engine block and crankcase together with all internal running components, pistons, crankshaft, etc.

Shrink Fit

An interference fit obtained by heating the outer component or cooling the inner component so that they can be assembled with a push fit. When the temperatures are balanced the parts retain their interference fit.


Loss of solvent during the drying/curing process of a paint film.


General term used to describe a cover.

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