What does an exhaust silencer do?
A car’s exhaust system is made up of several parts that channel gases from the engine’s cylinders back into the atmosphere.
The exhaust silencer is the final section, and its job is to reduce the amount of noise created by the engine gases being forced through the exhaust pipe.
How often should an exhaust silencer need replacing?
Your exhaust silencer’s lifespan is dependent on a range of outside factors—the main ones being the weather and driving conditions. Modern exhausts made from chrome or stainless steel are designed to last for the life of the car, whereas a high-quality non-stainless steel exhaust should last for around 5 years.
The law, vehicle regulations and your MOT
A hole in your exhaust will only fail an MOT if it is responsible for a major leak or it causes the car to fail its emissions test.
What causes an exhaust silencer to stop working correctly?
Because of their location, being mounted underneath the car, **exhaust pipes **are highly prone to damage, corrosion and wear. The weather plays a significant part in the corrosion and deterioration of the different exhaust pipe sections; rust being a major player in the appearance of holes throughout the system.
Damage to exhausts can be caused by raised road elements or extrusions from the road, such as curbs or speed bumps. Damage can also occur by driving too fast over the brow of a hill or through a dip where the suspension might bottom out and cause contact between the underside of the vehicle and the road surface.
Symptoms of a malfunctioning exhaust silencer
A noisy exhaust
If your exhaust makes more noise or is louder than normal, your exhaust silencer is probably damaged or improperly attached. A common sound of ‘blowing out’ is where holes have developed in the silencer.
There are holes in the exhaust
If you can see holes developing in your exhaust, through damage or deterioration, it’s time to get a new exhaust silencer.
Excessive vibration and lack of performance
A damaged exhaust pipe can affect your vehicle’s performance, and in some circumstances develop a vibration that wouldn’t occur under normal operation.
Failure of an emissions test
The exhaust is responsible for vehicle emissions, so if you fail a test, on inspection or at MOT, then you need to replace the malfunctioning component immediately.