Driving without engine bay lid - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community

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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 03:05 AM Thread Starter
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Driving without engine bay lid

First off, let me preface by saying I was brought up believing that the only stupid question is the one you don't ask. That being said, I am working on the engine bay lid on my car and next week the car is scheduled to go in the shop to fix the frame holding the radiator fans. The lid won't be done by then and my options are to put it back on the car for the drive to the shop and bringing it back home to finish while the cars in the shop, or driving it there sans engine bay lid.

I don't think there would be any problems driving without the engine bay lid, but would rather take the chance of looking dumb by asking y'all than just doing it and risk something happening. These cars do have their quirks.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 05:03 AM
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I don't think there would be a problem or danger. The only thing I can think of Bob is that the lid does seal the rear boot from the exterior environment, so over a long time period you would get grit and grime into the rear boot area. On a short drive to the shop in good weather I don't think you need to be concerned.

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 07:47 AM
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You will notice increased noise if you are observant. Perhaps, extra radio interference. (Did you think that the aluminum foil is applied to the engine bay walls just to look PRETTY? LOL)

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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 01:55 PM
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Did you think that the aluminum foil is applied to the engine bay walls just to look PRETTY?
Usually for heat transfer reasons.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 05:46 PM
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If it is OK to drive without a wing it should be OK to drive without an engine lid! Just don't do it in the rain.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-16-2017, 06:07 PM
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I have driven without the engine bay lid and a fuel pressure gauge attached a few times around where I live, no problems at all. It is louder. Its funny you should post this as I just had the bay open yesterday and I was thinking why did they not have a single hatch cover instead of the lid as it does.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 11:28 AM
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Stay off the unpaved stuff or your trunk will be well dusted without the cover!!

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 02:29 PM Thread Starter
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You will notice increased noise if you are observant. Perhaps, extra radio interference. (Did you think that the aluminum foil is applied to the engine bay walls just to look PRETTY? LOL)
I just spent the last two days scraping off all the old foil. It looked like a couple rolls of aluminum AC tape that was painted black, the paint was faded and end portions of the tape was starting to peel off and look like crap. I was going to repaint it flat black using high temp paint. Is there a special foil undercoating I should replace it with or re-apply the aluminum tape (which I would prefer not doing)? I'm not as concerned about radio interference as much as I am heat issues.

While it's out, and the car is in the shop for something unrelated, I'm also replacing the fan screen, engine lid seal, and the foam seal on the tailgate.

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Toy- '83 Esprit

Last edited by Laser Bob; 02-17-2017 at 03:34 PM.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 03:36 PM
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I have that same question. I'm getting ready to do my engine cover with sticky foil and was wondering the same thing yesterday. Would really wide sheets be better or are they just too unwieldy.

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1995 Esprit S4s

Last edited by Seraph; 02-17-2017 at 03:39 PM. Reason: typo
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 03:53 PM
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I would think that the important question is, CAN THE ADHESIVE STAND UP TO THE HEAT?

For that reason, I wouldn't use the foil tape that home stores sell to seal heat system ducting...

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-17-2017, 11:03 PM
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I would think that the important question is, CAN THE ADHESIVE STAND UP TO THE HEAT?

For that reason, I wouldn't use the foil tape that home stores sell to seal heat system ducting...
I agree 100% with that note. With the high temp of the engine in such a confined space if the adhesive of the tape does not hold it could let go and interfere with the timing belt.

Contact your Lotus parts provider and get the correct material that was used for the car.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 07:56 PM
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Question. It would seem to me that in the heat of the summer having the bay lid off the car might make for a little extra air moving through the engine compartment and thereby help cooling - not much but maybe a little ???
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 07:57 PM
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I have used Nashua Aluminum Repair Foil Tape, 11 mil Thick, 48 mm Width

I baked it in a dry heat at 300F for an hour (if I remember correctly) and it never failed.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-18-2017, 08:25 PM
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I baked it in a dry heat at 300F for an hour (if I remember correctly) and it never failed.
Hmmm.... your oven must be bigger than mine.
Wife is starting to look a little at me.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 06:12 AM
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Looks as if MrD put the leftovers on his garage door too!

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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 07:38 AM
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I would think that the important question is, CAN THE ADHESIVE STAND UP TO THE HEAT?

For that reason, I wouldn't use the foil tape that home stores sell to seal heat system ducting...
The foil on mine was in bad shape some time ago. I took off the remaining foil, cleaned the lid really well with detergent and let it dry and used a good quality epoxy, spread it with a disposable foam brush on the underside of the lid and used wide and heavy weight aluminum foil and applied it. The epoxy takes some time to set up so you can get a nice tight fit on the foil with another dry disposable brush. Came out perfect and will last longer than the original I think. Mask off the edges so any epoxy drips don't go around to the top-visible side. I did the same with the trunk floor. No change since I did it about thirteen years ago, still looks great.
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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 08:56 AM
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The foil on mine was in bad shape some time ago. I took off the remaining foil, cleaned the lid really well with detergent and let it dry and used a good quality epoxy, spread it with a disposable foam brush on the underside of the lid and used wide and heavy weight aluminum foil and applied it. The epoxy takes some time to set up so you can get a nice tight fit on the foil with another dry disposable brush. Came out perfect and will last longer than the original I think. Mask off the edges so any epoxy drips don't go around to the top-visible side. I did the same with the trunk floor. No change since I did it about thirteen years ago, still looks great.
Any pics?

Jim S.
1995 Esprit S4s
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 09:42 AM
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I just got rid of the engine cover all together, as well as third window. Removing all this did cool the engine bay by a huge amount.
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 09:52 AM
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One member did say that he drove around without the lid and it melted the thin plastic window surround.
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-19-2017, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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MrD- I must admit that looks real good.

Mine has been black for awhile (until the tape started peeling off and more silver started showing thru) and I haven't had any problems with heat since the carb problems got sorted out.

Was thinking of just keeping it black but was considering the tape you suggested, however I don't have a big enough oven either.
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Last edited by Laser Bob; 02-19-2017 at 11:45 AM. Reason: punctuation
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