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5 Symptoms of Exhaust Leak in the Car

July 26, 2017 | General Repair Info

The purpose of an exhaust system is to make the emissions of your car less harmful before they are transferred out of the tailpipe. If you have an exhaust system that does not work properly, the toxic gases from the emissions will get inside your vehicle and threaten the lives of everyone in there. Since these deadly gases are odorless and invisible, you won’t see them or notice them. You will just inhale the gases while slowly leading to your death. That is why you must learn to recognize the symptoms of a malfunctioning exhaust system and then have it repaired at your local auto servicing shop right away.

Below are three common symptoms of a bad exhaust system:

Noise That Gets Louder

When you start up the engine and hear an increasingly loud noise coming from around the engine, it could be from a leaky exhaust system. Remember that a gasket lies in between the piping of the exhaust manifold and the engine block. This gasket is constantly heated and cooled just like the piping. So, if you don’t see a crack or leak coming from the piping, then check the gasket to see if there’s a flaw there.

Vibrating Gas Pedal

Anytime there is even a tiny leak, the car will vibrate. But if the leak is big, the vibrations will be much bigger as well. You will first begin to notice these vibrations coming from the gas pedal. If you don’t do anything about it, the vibrations will be felt on the steering wheel. Finally, the floorboards will vibrate.

Bad Fuel Efficiency

If you notice that your vehicle requires more gas than usual, then it could be due to a leaky exhaust system. These leaks make it harder for your engine to perform which, in turn, lowers your fuel efficiency.

Tough Acceleration

Place your foot onto the accelerator and pay attention to any noises that don’t seem right. If you hear sounds that seem like leaky exhaust fumes, then you obviously have a problem. However, it is hard for most people to tell the difference between different engine sounds and exhaust sounds. Not only that, but strange engine noises could be due to other kinds of engine problems as well. Only use this technique if you’ve already experienced another symptom and are trying to verify your suspicions.

Unusual Odor

Not all exhaust fumes are odorless, just carbon monoxide. If you have a leaky manifold, you will notice a very strong odor in the air. If the odor persists then it is clearly harmful exhaust that you don’t want to breathe in for very long. Therefore, take your vehicle to your local auto servicing shop immediately and have them verify the problem and then fix it. Don’t take any chances with carbon monoxide because it can be lethal.

Read also: 5 Symptoms of a Bad Wheel Alignment in Your Car

In conclusion, the symptoms of a leaky exhaust system are weak fuel efficiency, a gas pedal that vibrates, noises that keep getting louder and exhaust fumes that smell. Don’t wait for all these symptoms to happen together. If just one symptom comes up, that should be enough of a warning sign for you to get your car to the auto shop for repair. Otherwise, you could be damaging your exhaust system more and end up having to pay lots of money to get it fixed or replaced.

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