How to Spot Exhaust Problems Before They Get Worse

Photo by Matt Boitor on Unsplash

How much do you know about exhaust problems showing up in your family or work vehicle? For many of us, we don’t notice it. But if you drive an older vehicle or one that spews oil out the back, then the exhaust issues are more obvious.

We Love Protecting Our Community

At Matt’s Automotive Service Center, we pour a lot of love into our community. We do this by serving those around us in our neighborhoods, cities, and regions by making the world a better place, one auto repair at a time.

But we also pour love into our community by helping car owners protect themselves and their families from preventable air pollution. We give a hoot so your car won’t pollute. That’s why we wish to educate drivers on how to spot exhaust problems before they get worse.

In Minnesota and North Dakota, emissions testing is not a requirement. However, many drivers want to help out Mother Nature by taking better care of her. You can protect the air we breathe better with regular exhaust system inspections.

Five Signs Your Exhaust System Is Becoming Exhausted

You should be aware of five signs your vehicle may exhibit when your exhaust system is wearing out. These five signs could show up independently or in combination. 

If you experience any of these five signs, we encourage you to visit any of our Matt’s Automotive Service Center locations around the Twin Cities and Fargo/Moorhead regions.

  1. Unusual Noises: One of the key signs of exhaust problems is unusual noises coming from the vehicle’s exhaust system. These noises can include loud rattling, hissing, or banging sounds. Pay attention to any sudden changes in the sound of your vehicle’s exhaust, as they can indicate underlying issues.
  1. Increased Exhaust Smoke: Another important indicator of potential exhaust problems is increased exhaust smoke. Excessive white smoke may suggest coolant leakage, while blue or black smoke can indicate burning oil or a rich fuel mixture. If you notice abnormal smoke coming from your exhaust, it’s important to have it inspected promptly.
  1. Foul Odors: Strong and unpleasant odors emanating from the exhaust system can indicate exhaust problems. A strong smell of sulfur or rotten eggs often indicates a catalytic converter issue. Additionally, a fuel-like smell can suggest a fuel system problem. Unusual odors should not be ignored and should be addressed to prevent further damage.
  1. Reduced Fuel Efficiency: Exhaust problems, such as a malfunctioning oxygen sensor or a clogged catalytic converter, can lead to decreased fuel efficiency. If you find yourself needing to refuel more frequently than usual or notice a significant drop in gas mileage, it could be a sign of an exhaust-related issue.
  1. Vibrations or Loss of Power: A malfunctioning exhaust system can also cause vibrations or a loss of power in the vehicle. Exhaust leaks or blockages can disrupt the proper flow of exhaust gases, leading to decreased engine performance. If you experience unusual vibrations or a noticeable loss of power, it is advisable to have the exhaust system inspected to identify and resolve any underlying problems.

Overall, being attentive to unusual noises, increased smoke, foul odors, reduced fuel efficiency, and changes in vehicle performance can help you spot exhaust problems before they worsen. Timely detection and repair of exhaust issues can prevent more extensive damage to the vehicle and ensure its optimal performance and safety.

Contact Matt’s Automotive Service Center

If your exhaust system needs repair or replacement, the auto repair team at Matt’s Auto is ready to help. We invite you to visit Matt’s Automotive Service Center for a CIA (Complimentary Initial Analysis), where we ask our tech to spend an honest 10 minutes inspecting your vehicle. If the problem with your exhaust system is obvious, we will inform you what’s happening. 

Not only do we offer a free inspection, but we allow you the option to enroll in a paid annual inspection, which has us perform a multi-point inspection of your vehicle, produce reports showing our findings, and correct the balance of your tires so you can limit long-term damage. 

If you’re in the Fargo/Moorhead or Twin Cities areas, Matt’s Automotive Service Center has locations ready to serve! When you need a team you can rely on backed by a service experience second to none, there is only one choice.
Schedule an appointment today with one of our locations today!