Understanding Auto Part Numbers

Dealing With A Leaky Exhaust System On Your Car Or Truck

by Gwendolyn Anderson

Your vehicle's exhaust system is there to ensure the spent gases and fumes from the combustion process inside the engine do not end up inside the car. These gases are toxic and can cause health problems over time, so it is critical that your exhaust system is in good shape and can remove the exhaust efficiently. If your exhaust system develops a leak, an exhaust repair shop can make the repairs necessary to ensure your car is safe for you and your passengers.

Muffler Damage And Repair

In most cases, a hole or damage to your car's muffler is cause for a replacement. However, in some rare cases, a muffler repair shop may be able to weld up a crack for you or patch a muffler that is hard to find or is very expensive to replace. 

Typically, mufflers will get louder when they develop leaks, and in many cases, you will also smell exhaust fumes in the car. If you notice a change in the tone or volume of your muffler, take your car in for exhaust repairs or inspections to determine if you need a new muffler or if repairs are possible.

Some exhaust leaks develop around the clamps used on the exhaust pipes, and often new clamps can be installed or the pipes welded to ensure the leak stops. While the exhaust system is not overly complex, finding and repairing leaks often takes some time and requires a technician to look over the entire system to determine where the leak is coming from.

Catalytic Converters

Nearly every car manufactured since the late seventies has a catalytic converter to reduce the emissions from the vehicle's tailpipe. Over time, the catalytic converter can get clogged and reduce exhaust flow through the system. 

Replacing these units is expensive but is required by law in the US, so removing them can result in expensive fines. When the catalytic converter is bad, you may notice engine performance issues, a foul smell from the exhaust, and excessive heat under the car. 

An exhaust repair service can change the convertor for you and can often help you find a replacement part that is less expensive than the OEM part.

Exhaust Pipes

The pipe used under your car to carry the exhaust from under the vehicle is most often steel. This means the pipe can rust over time, and you need to replace the rusted or damaged pipe. 

Many manufacturers offer pre-bent pipes that will fit the car without modification and match the OEM parts. If you have a rare or older car that is difficult to get parts for, the exhaust repair shop can often make pipes to fit the vehicle for you. 

While many DIY exhaust repair parts are available, it is essential to have the right tools and some knowledge of exhaust systems before attempting to replace a muffler or fix a leak yourself.   

Reach out to a local service, such as Muffler Man, to learn more.