As an auto repair technician will attest, a car's exhaust system is one of its most essential parts. It directs burning fuel fumes away from the vehicle’s occupants, removes dangerous contaminants before they reach the air, and muffles the engine volume to prevent noise pollution. Below is a look at some of the key components of a vehicle’s exhaust system.

A Guide to Your Car's Exhaust System

1. Exhaust Manifold

The exhaust manifold is a pipeline that splits off into multiple branches. Each branch accepts the output fumes from an engine cylinder and collects these gases into a single tube. This tube channels the fumes away from the engine compartment and past the vehicle occupants. As the manifold ages or suffers damage, it can crack, loosen, or leak, releasing carbon monoxide and other poisons that endanger passengers.

2. Oxygen Sensor

Auto repair in Lorain, OHThe oxygen sensor measures the amount of unburnt oxygen in the exhaust. This tells the car's computer whether the engine is burning lean or rich, allowing the vehicle to adjust the fuel and oxygen mixture more efficiently.

A failing oxygen sensor could cause the Check Engine dashboard light to illuminate. It could also result in rough idling and poor fuel efficiency. If you notice these symptoms, consult an auto repair specialist for an inspection.

3. Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter cleanses harmful gases from the exhaust manifold’s output. It converts toxic carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon gases into relatively harmless carbon dioxide and water vapor.

Catalytic converters can become clogged or overheated, break down, and require replacement. While a car will run without one, most states have laws requiring vehicles to contain an operational catalytic converter to prevent long-term air quality problems.

4. Muffler

The muffler silences the noise of combustion coming from the car's engine. It is a complex set of tubes and chambers that redirect the sound waves back on themselves so they cancel each other out.

Mufflers can rust or become detached from the rest of the exhaust system due to road debris or the vehicle’s constant vibrations. Most mufflers need replacement every five to seven years.

If your exhaust system needs work, seek reliable and affordable auto repair at A-1 Auto Service in Lorain, OH. They have served customers throughout the surrounding areas for more than 40 years, and all of their mechanics boast Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certifications. They specialize in brake service, engine tune-ups, wheel alignments, tire repair, oil changes, and transmission service. Learn more about this auto mechanic online, or call (440) 245-0076 to schedule an auto repair.