Knowing When It Is Time To Replace The Muffler On Your Vehicle

The muffler on your vehicle is designed to reduce the noise coming from the tailpipe of your car. The muffler is designed to work with the exhaust system and the engine to optimize the way the car runs, so if your muffler is damaged, it is essential to take the vehicle in for muffler repair

Exhaust Odors

A muffler that is leaking or damaged may let exhaust gases out directly under your vehicle. Those gases can seep into the passenger compartment and contain carbon monoxide, making them harmful for you to breathe. 

If you smell exhaust gases inside the vehicle, it is essential that you take your vehicle to a muffler repair shop and have them inspect the exhaust system for you. In some situations, the leak may be a loose exhaust clamp or other connection in the system, but if the leak is coming from a hole in the muffler, you will need to have the shop replace it for you. 

Loud Exhaust

Many times, when a hole develops in the muffler under your vehicle, you will notice the exhaust getting louder. If the exhaust is leaving the system between the engine and the muffler, there is nothing to reduce the engine sound, and it is extremely loud. 

The rumbling often gets louder as you accelerate and may be accompanied by a rattling sound if the muffler has come loose from the exhaust pipe. A muffler repair shop can check the system to determine what needs to be repaired. 

Sometimes the damage is limited to the muffler, and other times the pipe will also rot out and fail. Water vapor in the exhaust system can condensate in the muffler and settle in the bottom, causing the muffler to rot and holes to develop, but that same water can settle in verticle bends in the exhaust pipes, so be sure to check those for rust damage as well. 

Scraping Sounds

If the exhaust system clamp holding your muffler in place breaks or comes loose, the muffler can drop low enough that it can scrap over speedbumps or in areas where the asphalt on the road is higher than usual. 

The scraping or dragging sound may happen intermittently, but if you notice it, something is hanging too low under the car, and a muffler repair shop should check it out. The scraping could be the muffler, catalytic converter, to a section of the exhaust pipe, and eventually, the scraping can wear a hole in the metal. 

Often all you need to repair a low-hanging muffler is a new exhaust hanger, so ignoring it until it wears through or a seam on the muffler comes apart will cost you more the repair later.