How to Identify the Most Common Exhaust Problems
The exhaust system is an essential part of the running of any vehicle and also plays a safety function by directing all the exhaust fumes away from the car. It makes sure that all of the harmful emissions and particles are removed, improves the fuel economy of the vehicle and reduces the noise produced by the engine. If a car starts to experience exhaust problems it is vital that these are identified and dealt with quickly. This article highlights some of the more commonly experienced exhaust problems and how you can recognise them:
The Engine is Really Noisy
If you find your engine is becoming overly noisy you probably have an exhaust problem. The sound of a faulty manifold gasket is like a hissing or a tapping sound. When you start the car from cold the sound will be at its loudest and it will also increase when you accelerate.
A Fall in Power and Acceleration
You will find that an exhaust problem soon begins to affect performance. Your car will be more sluggish with slower acceleration from stationary and a lack of general power when changing speed. If you don’t have the exhaust leak mended the problem will just continue to get worse.
Reduced Fuel Efficiency
The fuel efficiency of a vehicle will go down as the problem of loss of power and acceleration gets worse. The car has to work harder and harder to maintain the same level of function and to run as it does when it has no exhaust problems. You will find that you will use more fuel and this will increase until you fix the problem. Although you may consider the cost of replacing the exhaust to be high, the cost of the extra fuel will outstrip this over time.
Exhaust systems are made from metal parts and so one of the most common causes of exhaust problems is rust. The materials used and the fact that the system is close to the ground where it is exposed to moisture and gritty conditions means it is particularly vulnerable. Once rust takes hold in the system it leads to more and more damage and the formation of holes and cracks. You can easily see rust problems on the exhaust with a simple visual inspection but if the rust is severe enough to cause holes you will start to hear loud roaring engine noise or hissing as gas escapes. This will definitely need professional attention.
Smell of Burning from the Engine
If you start to smell burning it is likely that the gasket has failed and is starting to leak near engine parts or wiring. Anything that is made of plastic is likely to burn because of the heat of the exhaust gases and this is what causes the smell. You may also see smoke. You should get the system checked as soon as you smell burning as this poses a serious safety risk.
Parts will loosen or wear out over time. This is normal and is caused by rust, knocks from the road or just simple wear and tear. Most issues with loose parts are cheap and easy to sort out but if the loose part is inside the system and hard to find it may be that a replacement is needed.
Something quite small can sound really alarming and if you notice this issue it is likely that something is loose inside. It could be that the system is misaligned. Just take your car into the garage and have it checked.
Normal Wear and Tear
Just like any other part of the car the exhaust system is not exempt from the effects of wear and tear. In fact, for all of the other problems we have discussed, wear and tear can be a contributing factor. There are parts of the exhaust system that are more susceptible such as the exhaust manifold and the oxygen sensors.
- Exhaust Manifold – this is the part of the exhaust system that is responsible for removing noxious gases from the engine and if it is damaged these gases can enter the body of the car and affect the driver and passengers. Hissing noises can be a sign that this part needs replacement and must be dealt with quickly.
- Oxygen Sensors – these measure the amount of oxygen present in the system and work on adjusting the ratio of air to fuel to maintain fuel economy. If they start to fail these readings are not accurate and fuel consumption increases and you should take the car in to the garage to have them replaced.
Blockages occur from time to time and have many different causes. It could be that there is a soot/carbon build up inside or that debris has entered the pipe. Often a minor blockage will just be spontaneously expelled but if the obstruction is large it can lead to poor function.
Unless you have a big blockage the signs can be hard to spot. Chugging noises can mean that something is in the system. If the blockage is large the car will run sluggishly and strain as if you are in too high a gear. You will experience increased revs and a drop in fuel economy.
If there is a smell of sulphur and/or the engine is getting hot it could be that the catalytic converter is blocked and gases are trapped in the system.
If you think you may have a blockage in the exhaust system you should take your car into a garage straight away. A professional will be able to assess the car and give it a thorough inspection in order to identify and repair any problems.
Here at VolksMaster our highly skilled, qualified team can provide a solution to any exhaust problems you may be experiencing with the highest quality of car repairs and servicing. We will provide reliable advice to help you make well-informed decisions about your car maintenance and repair needs. All our work is carried out with safety and efficiency in mind.
Get A Quote Now
Our Latest Google, Facebook & Trustpilot Reviews
Took my RS3 to Mike with a EML on worked out to be a timing issue which on a RS3 is a major job. Parts on back order for 2 weeks and Mike stored my car there so i didn’t cause any damage to the engine.. Got it back running perfect 100% recommend and won’t be taking my RS anywhere else.. Thanks Mike 👍🏽Mark Bolton18/07/2020
100% satisfied with this garage, from customer support to service, you will not be disappointed. Highly recommended!Gary Stockton17/07/2020
Took my RS3 to Mike with a EML on worked out to be a timing issue which on a RS3 is a major job. Parts on back order for 2 weeks and Mike stored my car there so i didn’t cause any damage to the engine.. Got it back running perfect 100% recommend and won’t be taking my RS anywhere else.. Thanks Mike 👍🏽Mark Bolton15/07/2020
My car had been back to VW Oldham twice and they couldn’t sort out the fault with my air con. Took it to Volks Master and they fixed it and it is working better than it ever has. Fab garage and really helpful staff. Highly recommendCaroline Schofield15/07/2020
I've used Volksmaster for years. they are good mechanics, who explain what is wrong and what are the options. prices are reasonable (much cheaper than a dealer) and service is friendly.Andrew Booth14/07/2020
The reception and staff could not be more helpful the service was carried out on time and the car was given a full clean inside and out definately recomend volksmaster for car serviceMalcolm Watson30/06/2020
Excellent service - very professional and friendly. Had them recommended and will be using them from now on - highly recommended by me.Catherine Bradbury27/06/2020
Volksmaster Bury My wife took her Lease car to Volksmaster at BURY. There were issues with communications between the Lease Company, my wife's company etc. but we were both impressed with the courteous and professional manner in which the 'guys' at Volksmaster operated and the willingness to provide and excellent customer service and get her car back to her as soon as possible. Well done to all and thank you. HIGHLY RECOMMENDEDJohn Griffin27/06/2020
We’ve been using Volksmaster for about 6 years. They have always been professional and helpful. The work carried out has always been high quality and good value.Andrew Lomax23/06/2020
After being messed about by main dealers, decided to take my business elsewhere!! After chatting to Lisa (very friendly and knowledgeable) got my Audi TTS booked in, turned up and Ryan had me back On the road in no time, great professional guys at 50% of the stealers!! Highly recommended 👍🏼yenoor406 .18/06/2020
After being messed about by main dealers, decided to take my business elsewhere!! After chatting to Lisa (very friendly and knowledgeable) got my Audi TTS booked in, turned up and Ryan had me back On the road in no time, great professional guys at 50% of the stealers!! Highly recommended 👍🏼yenoor40618/06/2020
Excellent service and went above and beyond to help with warranty company. I will definitely recommend and will definitely use again.
I brought my Audi here, following a recommendation from an AA mechanic. I dealt with Mike, who was brilliant. Work was done extremely quick, very efficient and communicated well the whole way through. Also very helpfull in providing me with statements and documents to support my claim to the ombudsman after my warranty company refused to pay for the work.
Thanks guystobi oputa10/06/2020
Fantastic customer service every time. Been coming to the same garage for over 10+years and never been disappointed.Heidi Taylor09/06/2020
I would highly recommend this place. Very professional. Personally spoke with Mike who was really helpful and gave brilliant advice. He was very honest and genuinely helped us. They are very clean and thoroughly clean car after done which is essential with the current situation.
The service is impeccable, quality of the work is outstanding. I will definitely be going here for all future work.Saim Ghazanfar ali05/06/2020
It’s very rare I write a review, but today the service received from Volksmaster was exceptional!
With the COVID-19 issue at the present time they have developed procedures for keeping distance when in the office and disinfecting all parts of the car they touch before the service and when finished.
As for the service, I am very pleased. Everything completed and they also highlighted issues from previous servicing.
As for the cost, I am deliriously happy. Never again will I have the hassle of dealing with an AUDI main dealer who charge the earth and do unnecessary work. (Bye Bye Main Dealers)Colin Buckley27/05/2020
Cannot praise them highly enough - recommended by a friend for their attention to new Covid 19 situation when they had a car situation 2 weeks ago- had a situation requiring immediate action myself and the good hygiene controls had become even better. Fixed screen in reception - key disinfected in and out/ key elements of car disinfected in and out and great price for job. The 'new' way forward. Thank you. Stay safe. Well done for embracing new normalMags Poulton07/05/2020
Amazing, went in for brake pads and discs, great hospitality, customer always comes first will be coming here forever 🙂jahanzayb kayani18/03/2020
Always friendly and helpful, really know their stuff.They will advise honestly and charge fairly.i would not use any other.Roy Clare13/03/2020
Always friendly and helpful, really know their stuff.
They will advise honestly and charge fairly.
i would not use any other.Roy Clare09/03/2020
Volksmaster have looked after my Touareg for the past three years and have done a great job servicing and MOT'ing it - their work is always to a high standard and at a great price. Recommend them to anyone.Anthony Boggiano03/03/2020
Took my daughter's car here for it's second service because the previous owner had it's first service carried out by Volksmaster Bury and he recommended them to me. RUBBISH service!!
Only joking, everything was great; polite, friendly professional service and a quick turnaround (the service was completed before I had finished my lunch) I will be bringing the car back here for the next service.
Thanks, RobRobert Ray28/02/2020Steven Brooks28/02/2020