Exhaust & Muffler
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Exhaust & Muffler
The exhaust system covers everything from the cylinder head to the tail pipe tip. When the combustion process happens in the cylinder head of the engine, the exhaust is the by product of this process. It is an extremely hot gas that needs to be extracted and ducted outside the vehicle. It unfortunately has pollutants that over time have been reduced though it still is not something human beings want to breathe in.
Popular Questions Asked
What is an Exhaust Pipe?
The exhaust pipe is exactly that. The pipe the exhaust gas uses to exit the vehicle. Usually made from mild or stainless steel it is like a metal snake that winds its way from the car's engine to the back of the vehicle. Great care is needed when routing it as the exhaust gas makes it very hot. This can cause issues if it is placed too close to suspension components or fluid lines. A lot of new cars run heat shielding to protect components and the passenger cabin from radient heat.
The exhaust pipe normally comes in sections, some containing other components like a muffler or sensor fitting points, so it can easily be replaced. Mild steel systems corrode due to condensation inside the pipe caused when the engine shuts off and the pipe slowly cools. Stainless steel has the same condensation issue though it is much more resistant and lasts a lot longer. A good investment on a classic car.
What is a Muffler?
Without a muffler you could not hear yourself think if standing next to a straight out exhaust pipe. The mufflers role is to muffle the noise made by the engine as it pumps out the hot exhaust gas. It needs to absorb the noise without restricting or choking the engine by adding to much back pressure. There will still be some restriction and this can't be helped.
They are a rectangular box made of mild or stainless steel and are internally baffled to reduce noise. They suffer from condensation as well and the same rules as the exhaust pipe applies to the muffler.
What happens when a Muffler or Exhaust Pipe fails?
Most of the issues are it develops a hole or crack due to internal corrosion which then causes a lot more noise to come from the exhaust. On the odd occasion mechanical damage occurs when you hit or run over something on the road. Besides sounding terrible the hole or crack may duct the hot exhaust gas onto a vital component so it is worth getting it checked.
One this occurs the best course of action is to replace the offending section. You can create a temporary repair like a muffler bandage and they can get you through until you can get it replaced. Piping is relatively cheap though muffler costs can vary a lot as can the labour required to do the job. A car hoist is your best friend if doing it yourself as exhausts can take some juggling to get them into the right spot.