Exhaust System Service & Repair
Did you know?
Carbon monoxide is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths. It’s a dangerous and potentially lethal toxin. Excessive exposure to auto exhaust can cause brain damage and even death. If you see, smell or hear exhaust anywhere but the tailpipe, get an auto inspection right away.
There’s more to the Exhaust System than Just the Muffler
We’ve all heard a car or truck in our Notting Hill, Waverley, Clayton and Wheelers Hill neighborhoods that needs a new muffler. But there’s more to the exhaust system than just the muffler.
The exhaust system has three main functions
- To safely get hot exhaust gas from the engine out the tailpipes
- Treats the exhaust to remove harmful pollutants
- Muffle the engine noise
Exhaust gas is poisonous. You don’t want it getting into the passenger compartment. For example, carbon monoxide can be deadly. That’s why you should never run your engine in a closed garage. If you have a leak in the exhaust system, exhaust could get into the passenger cabin and make you sick or even kill you.
If you smell exhaust fumes in your vehicle … Roll down the windows and get it inspected immediately.
You may smell or see exhaust coming from the engine compartment or under the vehicle if you have a leak. Sometimes the sound from an exhaust leak is loud and obvious. Sometimes it’s a ticking sound when you start the engine that goes away as you drive. That could be a small crack or a bad fitting that leaks when it’s cold but seals up when the metal heats and expands.
Now, let’s address the environmental issues for our south eastern communities. Exhaust gas contains a number of pollutants and particulates. The catalytic converter scrubs some of those harmful substances. And diesel vehicles have systems to deal with soot.
Catalytic converters were fitted to all cars since 1986 as part of the exhaust system and are designed to convert toxic gasses into environmentally friendly by products.
Catalytic converters eventually wear out and do need to be replaced. They’re expensive so you want to help them last as long as possible by keeping the fuel system clean and replacing the air filter. These components need to be tested for function with an emissions test at each major service.
Exhaust gases conversion begins with an operating temperature of approximately 200 degrees Celsius. The optimum operating temperature is usually between 400 and 600 degrees Celsius. The core of the catalytic converter is made of a ceramic matrix coated with precious metals.
Symptoms of a faulty catalytic converter include:
- Exhaust system blockages leading to poor engine performance usually caused by the core melting with persistent engine misfire or unburned fuel entering the catalytic converter.
- Rattling sounds in the exhaust system due to the core disintegrating
- Or no obvious symptoms but failing an exhaust emissions test
All these symptoms cause poisonous, air polluting fumes to be emitted into the atmosphere and can be detected by an exhaust gas analysis test.
Derogation of the core occurs over time but is accelerated by engine and tuning faults. Even with regular servicing and no engine or tuning faults, converters often need replacing after 80,000 km or every five years.
It is important they are checked regularly in order to maintain proper function and assist in maintaining an economical and efficient vehicle and reducing toxic gases.
Modern Cars Rely on Oxygen Sensors to Save Fuel And the Environment
Motor car manufacturers have installed oxygen sensors into the engine exhaust system to help save fuel and the environment. The oxygen sensor is a small electronic device located in the exhaust manifold of a modern car engine.
What does the oxygen sensor do?
Well, a car’s engine management computer relies on accurate information in order to automatically adjust the air fuel mixture to its optimal level. The oxygen sensor is designed to detect and measure the exact amount of oxygen that is expelled into the exhaust emission and send this information to the computer control unit.
Too much oxygen in the exhaust gas indicates a lean mixture which can cause performance problems including misfires and engine component damage. Too little oxygen indicates a rich mixture which wastes fuel and causes excessive exhaust emissions and potential damage to the catalytic converter.
When does an oxygen sensor need to be replaced?
Due to its location in the exhaust manifold, the sensor is exposed to extremely harsh conditions, carbon, soot and harmful gasses. Anti-freeze, chemicals and thermal shock all combine to shorten the life of the oxygen sensor. Oxygen sensors in poor condition result in poor engine performance.
Replacement of the oxygen sensor depends on both the type of sensor and the vehicle. Certain sensors have a service life of 50,000km, whilst others may last up to 100,000km.
And that leaves the muffler. The beauty of getting a new muffler is that you can suit your taste: Some want whisper quiet and others like a little rumble. And some like a roar when they drive down our south eastern streets.
Talk to Colin or Chris and get their recommendation for the best exhaust system suited to your driving needs.