The Pontiac Engine Piston turns kinetic energy into mechanical motion each time the fuel explodes in the combustion chamber. In each of the cylinders on your Pontiac is an engine piston. The top of the piston is the place where all the force from the explosion is pushed against so it can drive this engine component down.
There are several different ways an engine piston can be damaged and made non-functional. One of the more common ways is for something to drop down in the spark plug hole during a routine tune-up. If a metal object of any size falls in, it will damage the walls of the cylinder and top of the engine piston.
Another common way the Pontiac engine pistons can be damaged is by the owner not changing their oil regularly. Dirty oil has contaminates that will scare sides of the piston and will reduce the amount of compression this engine component can generate. With each stroke the Pontiac engine will have less power for the driver to enjoy.
Most of the time, when the compression of the engine piston is faltering the piston rings can be changed instead of the piston itself. This is not the case when the owner of the Pontiac places a hotter than recommended spark plug in their engine. It is true that for a short period of time the engine will run more efficiently with the hotter plug igniting the air and fuel mixture, but there is a consequence to this action. The heat will also burn a hole in the top of the piston cause the entire component to be in need of replacement before the engine will run again.