Mufflers are some of the most overlooked yet crucial parts of a car's exhaust system. Exhaust systems can be quite loud due to the noises from the engine. Car mufflers are designed to reduce the noise levels in the exhaust system. But that's not all. The mufflers also ensure that all the gases produced in the exhaust system are safely directed outside. However, just like many other mechanical parts in your car, the muffler may develop an issue or two at some point. And leaks are some of the most common muffler problems you will encounter. Troubleshooting a leaky car muffler is crucial because it will enable you to make the required repairs or replacements in time. With that in mind, here is how you can detect a leaky muffler.
Unusually Loud Exhaust
A leaky muffler is simply a muffler with large holes or cracks in it. This can be caused by many things, including rust or corrosion in the muffler, too much condensation, or damage resulting from driving down rocky or poorly maintained roads. Since mufflers are designed to 'muffle' or minimise the noise levels from your vehicle's exhaust system, holes and cracks will often reduce their ability to do this. Consequently, you will end up with a louder-than-usual exhaust.
Exhaust Fumes in The Passenger Compartment
Besides reducing noise levels, mufflers are also meant to direct the exhaust gases out of your car. A leaky muffler will fail to control the flow of the gases outside the vehicle. That means some of the gases will end up inside the car. You should be alarmed when you start smelling any exhaust fumes inside your car. That's because most of the gases are usually toxic and can be quite harmful to the health of those inhaling them. While you may not notice a difference at first, inhaling the gases can be fatal over time, especially if you use the vehicle daily.
Another sure way to determine if your muffler has a leak is to conduct routine inspections of this component. The muffler is the low-hanging metallic pipe on the exhaust system, so it's easy to notice cracks and other damages on the pipe. Inspections will also help you to identify any other issues such as excessive rust, clogs in the muffler, and even loose or missing parts.
Keep in mind that mufflers are usually readily available in many auto shops, so finding a replacement for your vehicle shouldn't be hard.
To learn more, contact a shop that carries mufflers.