You may never have thought of your car’s exhaust pipe as anything more than a simple tube for expelling engine waste gases. In reality, however, the exhaust pipe has an important role to play as an integral part of the exhaust system. A problem with your exhaust pipe can spell serious trouble for your car in general.
You can nip exhaust pipe problems in the bud if you know what to look for and when to enlist the aid of skilled exhaust system technicians. Pay attention to the following four trouble signs.
1. Excessive Noise
A car’s exhaust assembly should act as a closed system from the exhaust manifold and catalytic converter to the muffler and tailpipe, where the exhaust finally makes its exit. If a breach occurs at any point along this system, you may hear loud tapping or hissing noises that grow worse as your vehicle accelerates.
Normally you can expect the muffler surrounding the exhaust pipe to dampen unnecessary noises. If the muffler has nothing wrong with it, you may need to have the exhaust pipe checked for cracks or breakage. Exhaust escaping prematurely through these gaps may cause unusual noises.
2. A Loose or Hanging Pipe
An exhaust pipe adheres to the undercarriage of a vehicle via rubber support mounts known as exhaust hangers. If these mounts break, or if the exhaust pipe breaks at some point between two mounts, a section of the exhaust pipe may hang down unusually close to the road. It may even drag along the pavement as you drive.
If your car has developed this problem, you will most likely see the pipe clearly drooping lower than usual from the undercarriage. Even if you haven’t seen any such obvious signs of a loose or hanging pipe, you may hear the pipe scraping along the ground while the vehicle is in motion.
3. Gasoline Odor
A strong smell of unburned gasoline should put any driver on the alert for potential problems. Some causes may involve serious problems such gas tank, injector, or fuel line leaks, while others might prove as benign as a missing gas cap or gasoline tracked into the cabin by your shoes.
A gasoline odor may also come from a damaged exhaust pipe. If the pipe breaks, rusts through, or otherwise springs a leak, gas fumes may drift into the vehicle’s cabin instead of continuing their journey through the muffler to the tailpipe. This problem can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning, so get it fixed immediately.
4. Poor Engine Performance
Manufacturers design car exhaust systems to maintain certain pressure levels for optimal engine performance and fuel economy. If your exhaust pipe has a hole in it, the system will most likely lose pressure. As a result, you will get less fuel economy than you might expect, along with subpar acceleration and engine power.
Damage to your exhaust pipe may not remain limited to that component for long. A breach toward the front of the system (near the exhaust manifold) may allow hot exhaust gases to blow against other parts that would not normally receive this kind of thermal stress. The resulting damage could involve multiple components.
Periodic evaluations can often catch exhaust issues before they become evident to car owners. Get your car inspected at recommended service intervals. Auto technicians can get a detailed look at the exhaust pipe by lifting the car and examining the undercarriage. They can also perform pressure tests to check for potential leaks. If you suspect a problem with your car’s exhaust pipe or any other part of its exhaust system, pay a visit to Seeburg Mufflers. We can make any necessary repairs to get your car running at peak efficiency. Contact us today.
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