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Points to Ponder With Exhaust System Maintenance


The exhaust system in your vehicle is not something you think much about until a problem arises. In fact, it pays to have the system checked from time to time. Doing so helps to minimize damage and extends the life of the system. Here are some of the elements that should be part of your plan for exhaust system maintenance.

Checking Temperature Levels

While you expect the exhaust system to get hot during operation, that does not mean it can’t get a little too hot. Issues with the level of heat can shorten the lives of all types of catalyst converters and possibly lead to damage to other systems. It’s in your best interest to have a professional check the system and make sure there are not signs that overheating is taking place. If so, you want to take action now rather than wait until any real damage is done.

Taking a Look at the Seals

What sort of seals are used with the engine and the exhaust system? It’s not unusual for silicone to be used for at least part of the seals associated with exhaust manifolds or headers. When those seals begin to deteriorate, they cannot hold up as well to the higher temperatures. The result is the creation of a gas that skews the oxygen readings in the system. Since those readings are not accurate, the mixture is richer and could cause quite a bit of damage. By making sure the seals are checked on a regular basis, it’s easier to avoid this problem and prevent damage to the converter.

Make a Note Of What’s Coming Out of the Tailpipe

You don’t normally pay much attention to what emerges from the tailpipe, but doing so is a good idea. If the engine is beginning to burn oil, that means something is wrong. Since that oil has to pass through the catalytic converter before it emerges as blue smoke from the tailpipe, making the time to look could save the engine as well as the overworked converter.

Even if you don’t crank the engine and then walk around to the back to see what’s coming out, it’s still possible to use a paper towel to gently wipe the end of the tailpipe after the car has been parked for a couple of hours. If it comes back with a lot of oil residue, it’s time to seek help from a professional.

Don’t Forget the Filters

Filters are also key to the proper function of any exhaust system. When was the last time you had them checked or changed? Clogged filters reduce efficiency and create the perfect environment for excessive heat. This is true with any type of engine, including diesel engines.

One approach that you can consider is making sure you are using the right diesel particulate filter and having it cleaned on a regular basis. As part of the essential maintenance, DPF filter cleaning will protect your engine and exhaust system, reduce the potential for overheating, and extend the life of the vehicle in general.

Pay attention to what your exhaust system is doing and have repairs made promptly. Doing so will save time and money down the road.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by jj