When something goes wrong with your car, you can usually tell right away by the way something sounds or feels. Just like going to the doctor, if you treat or fix something before it gets worse, it'll save you a lot more money. Replacing a muffler or exhaust system is not an easy job and can be expensive depending on what kind of car you have. And if you ignore the warning signs, you could be spending a lot of money at the auto parts store. So here are the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
The easiest way to tell if you have a bad muffler is the way it sounds. While some people add car mods to purposefully have a louder exhaust, a bad muffler will be noisy and could have a rattling sound, indicating that it's loose or has a hole in it. Also be sure to look at it and make sure it's clear of any rust or any fluids. If your muffler is leaking fluids anywhere, it's not a good sign. Finally, a bad muffler can cause your car to overheat if not treated and is probably one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
If you hear a ticking sound while accelerating, it can be a sign that there's a crack or hole somewhere in your exhaust. If left untreated, the ticking sound will steadily get louder and faster when you step on the gas. It is also a sign that air is escaping somewhere and one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
If you smell something burning from the engine, it's not a good sign. Instead of channeling harmful fumes away from the cabin, your car ventilation system could blow the fumes inside the car. These fumes can smell like gas, oil or chemicals and are extremely hazardous for your health and is one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
Catalytic converters are what converts all the harmful chemicals that cars discharge into less harmful gasses. Highly expensive and prone to theft, catalytic converters are incredibly important in the performance of your car. The good news is that it's relatively easy to notice a problem with it. A bad catalytic converter will either leak or affect acceleration and usually one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
Decrease in Acceleration
If your car is feeling sluggish and struggles to accelerate, it usually indicates that something is leaking and causing your engine to run hotter. When your engine is forced to work harder, it requires more fuel. So if you notice that you're filling up your tank more often that usual, it could be one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
If you notice any kind of smoke or vapors coming out of your muffler, it's one of the signs that it is time to replace your exhaust system. White smoke indicates that water is mixing with exhaust fumes and blue smoke indicates that oil is mixing with the fumes. It may be difficult to notice these signs, so take a moment to look when you start up your car.
Normally if your car leaks anything besides a few drips, it's usually a bad sign. A leak will tell you that there is a hole somewhere in the exhaust or there's a blockage of some kind. Also, if your exhaust system is leaking, there are potentially harmful chemicals such as carbon monoxide that could kill you and usually one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
Your oxygen sensor is a great indicator whether there's toxic fumes leaking into the cabin. While it is possible for the sensor to go bad, it should never be taken lightly. If your oxygen sensor comes on, it may be one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
If your car shakes and vibrates while you accelerate and step on the brake, it could be an indicator that there's a leak in your exhaust. If the vibrations become more serious, you could begin to lose control of the steering wheel and definitely one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.
Engine misfires could present a whole set of problems ranging from simple to difficult. While it could just be your spark plugs or wires, it could also be a sign of something serious like a bad catalytic converter. Mechanics will perform several tests by taking out the oxygen sensor or checking the spark plugs. But if you notice any other issues pertaining to fumes, it could be one of the signs it is time to replace your exhaust system.