Mufflers and Tailpipes

What are Mufflers and Tailpipes?

At the heart of every gasoline- or diesel-engine vehicle is an internal combustion engine. The key to its operation is right in the name, “combustion” or burning of fuel. The engine converts the explosive force of the combusted fuel into mechanical energy, which eventually gets to the wheels to get you around.

Still, only about 20% of that energy ever gets to the ground, the rest being wasted as heat and noise. Mufflers and tailpipes route these waste products; carbon dioxide, water, heat, and noise; out the back of the vehicle. The engine exhaust system includes the exhaust manifold, catalytic converter, and muffler, all connected by exhaust pipes, and exits the vehicle via the tailpipe. Mufflers and tailpipes perform two very important functions: damping excessive noise and routing hot exhaust gasses away from the vehicle.

Why are Mufflers and Tailpipes Important?

The muffler may look like an oversized part of the exhaust, but it’s more than just empty space. The muffler chamber is filled with insulation, baffles, and tubes that reroute and dull the sound of the exhaust on the way through. Properly designed, engine exhaust is relatively quiet, but doesn’t restrict exhaust flow enough to reduce engine performance or fuel economy – performance mufflers have fewer internal restrictions, which is why they’re louder than the typical sedan or economy car.

Tailpipes serve an important function, routing hot exhaust gases out the back of the vehicle. The engine exhaust is the hottest part of the vehicle, and the catalytic converter even hotter. Highway cruising on the level road, exhaust system temperatures can easily exceed 800 °F. Towing, aggressive driving, or cruising up a grade can push temperatures up to 1,200 °F. While much of your car is made of metal that can withstand such temperatures, many materials aren’t. Plastic parts, electrical insulation, and most vehicle fluids can melt or spontaneously combust at temperatures over 500 °F. Also, we’re sure driver and passengers can’t deal with that kind of heat!

What can Dobbs Tire & Auto Centers Do for You?

Because mufflers and tailpipes are constantly subjected to heat and moisture, they tend to corrode faster than unfinished parts of the vehicle. Also, because they are exposed, road debris or curb hits can cause damage. To keep your vehicle quiet and protect it from excessive exhaust heat temperatures, consult the experts at Dobbs Tire & Auto Centers.

“You Can Depend on Dobbs” – Dobbs Tire & Auto Centers, Home of the Fixed Forever Service Warranty. Locally and Family Owned Since 1976