Glossary of Auto Terms

DriverSide's Car Dictionary has the most comprehensive definitions of automotive terms. This auto glossary can help you decipher what your mechanic is fixing and what the purpose or function of the particular auto part or accessory is for. We have taken the mystery out of automotive service jargon, so that you don't have to.



An abbreviation for 'Top Dead Center'. This is the point in the piston's stroke at which the air/fuel mixture is maximally compressed. Ignition should occur at TDC.

See Also:
Air Cleaner
Air Cleaner Intake
Idle Speed Screw
Intake Valves
Fuel Pump
Catalytic Convertor

Diagnose Your Car's Problem

Engine won't start? Weird sound? Strange smoke? Got something going on with your car but not sure what it is? The easy to use DriverSide Diagnostic Tool is here to help you figure it out.

Enter Zip: