How much damage done from bouncing off rev limiter with engine cold

Today I was getting my power steering pump replaced on my 2007 dodge charger RT from a mechanic I found on craigslist. He came to my house and did the work while I was inside my house and then when he finished the job I heard him start my car from inside my house and speed off to test drive it around the block. He was gone for about 2 minutes. When he got back I saw him park the car and then heard him rev the engine in park bouncing off the rev limiter probably 5-6 times. (I just put an exhaust on so he probably liked the sound of it…) The car maybe had 2 minutes to warm up from the time it was cold started from driving around the block before he parked it and floored it like that. It’s an old car with 180k miles. Also it’s about 38 degrees F outside where I live and after I paid him and he left I looked at the temperature gauge and it had not budged from C. How likely is this to have caused damage and if so what could have happened? Noticed a weird oil/rubber smell from inside the cabin immediately after but it’s gone now and the car seems like it runs fine. I’m pretty angry to say the least since I take good care of my car and this guy thought it’d be a good idea to floor it and hold it there for a few seconds with the engine pretty much completely cold.

That’s not something I would have done when diy’ering work on my own cars, but if it were done my way it would have taken a lot more time, and the bill, since they charge by the hour, well you get the idea. It’s a compromise . IMO best way to get cars repaired is using an experienced, well-recommended shop with all the necessary equipment. I doubt what happened caused much in the way of damage though.

I do beat on my car sometimes but I always make sure it’s fully warmed up first. First and last time I’m going to use someone from Craigslist. The work itself was done correctly as far as I can tell but some people just don’t use common sense or respect

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As a kid my family lived on a road that had a steep hill, about 1/4 mile in length. We lived about halfway up. My dad worked uphill from where we lived, but he always drove to work by first going downhill. Then he’d loop back to his job. His theory was this was easier on the car. Probably was.

I just imagine flooring it and bouncing off the rev limiter just a couple minutes after a cold start when it’s 38 something degrees outside can’t be good. If something major was damaged as a result of this (spun a bearing, threw a rod), would it be apparent right away or could it take a while to be noticeable

Don’t worry about it.

What you were hearing was the rev limiter protecting the engine from being damaged when it saw no reason for the engine to be revved for the condition.

These types of limiters activate at the set RPM and “bounce” off of it if throttle is applied. The “bouncing” occurs because the limiter will cut off fuel or spark at the set RPM , which causes the RPM to drop. If the engine is in a state of open throttle when the RPM drops, the RPM will then raise back to the limit.


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That was probably from the burn out he did down the block. if major damage was done you would probably know about it already. as far as the future no one can tell you. I would not worry about it now because there is nothing you can do about it. just hope for the best. sorry this happened to you. sometimes it does not pay to go the cheaper way.

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The rev limit in park is 4000 RPMs, 6000 RPMs in drive, no harm done. The engine was probably run for longer than you think to refill the power steering pump/reservoir.

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It may have shortened the engine life by a miniscule amount. You’ll never know for sure without disassembling the engine and doing a thorough check. But with 180K miles, you’d likely find all kinds of wear.

Or you could just keep driving it and stop worrying. Chalk it up to a lesson learned.

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