An automotive exhaust system is a fantastic piece of engineering. Its primary purpose is to remove exhaust gases from a combustion engine while reducing the noise produced by the entire process. The exhaust system is also highly customisable, which leads many car buyers to modify or replace their stock exhausts with aftermarket options.
Sadly, modifying your car's exhaust system isn't without its challenges. There certainly are some downsides that come with doing this. However, for a true car enthusiast, these challenges may pale in comparison to the benefits that they get out of it!
In this article, we're going to check out the pros and cons of modifying your car's exhaust system. You might decide that your money would be better spent on other parts of the vehicle after you’ve gotten a good read of this piece. Or, the points here may support the decisions you've already made.
In any case, here are the pros and cons of modifying a car's exhaust system.
The Pros of Modifying Your Car's Exhaust System
1. You'll Get Better Performance from Your Car
A lot of car owners choose to modify their exhaust systems to improve the vehicle's performance. How does this happen? Well, let's remember that an engine 'breathes'; and by that, I mean that it takes air in before pushing it out.
An exhaust system's job is to make that air outflow as smooth as possible. With an upgraded exhaust system, there's less restriction on the airflow. Exhaust gases will be able to flow out much more efficiently, which makes it easier for the engine to produce more power.
2. Your Fuel Efficiency Will Improve
This is related to the previous point. When it comes to fuel efficiency, it's all about getting the right balance of oxygen and fuel in the engine. An improved exhaust system enhances that overall balance, which results in the engine burning fuel efficiently instead of wasting any of it.
3. You Can Reduce Emissions
The catalytic converter, a crucial part of the exhaust system, is designed to reduce toxic gases and pollutants in exhaust gas before it makes its way into the environment. If you're willing to spend a little bit more money, you can have your exhaust system modified or upgraded to reduce those emissions even further. There are plenty of aftermarket parts you can choose from that will probably do a better job than the stock exhaust system that came with the car!
4. You Could Increase Your Car's Value
Believe it or not, you can improve your car's value by modifying its exhaust system. If you're driving an older model, it may have an exhaust system that's rusted out or does not offer the same performance benefits as newer exhausts. A new exhaust system will improve the overall look of the car, and help it perform a little better.
5. Your Car Will Sound Much Cooler
Of course, one reason that many people upgrade their exhaust system is to achieve a certain kind of sound. The sound of a modified exhaust system is one that grabs the attention of everyone around. It tells the world that the car is modified for performance, and some would argue that it just sounds cool overall.
The Cons of Modifying Your Car's Exhaust System
As mentioned earlier, modifying your car's exhaust system isn't without its downsides. Let's take a look at a few of them.
1. It Can Be Expensive
For starters, modifying or upgrading your car's exhaust system will cost you a fair bit of money. This is especially true considering how you'll probably need professional help to get the job done. Modifying an exhaust system is not a simple DIY job that you can do in your garage. What this means is that aside from parts, you'll be paying labour charges as well. Together, it raises the total price tag on the whole project.
2. It'll Take Considerable Time
Modifying a car's exhaust system also takes quite a bit of time. Remember: the exhaust system starts with the headers or manifold attached to the engine. From there, the piping needs to snake its way past all the other parts towards your tailpipe. Depending on how sophisticated your new exhaust system is, the person fixing it will need time to bend and adjust the piping very carefully. It means that your car will be in the workshop for quite some time.
3. You'll Need to Spend More to Avoid Inferior Materials
If you want an exhaust system to last, you'll need to fork out more cash. See, a large part of the exhaust system is exposed to the elements. Water and snow on the road, salt in the air (if you're near the ocean), and even debris can all cause damage to an exhaust system. You'll need to consider these factors when choosing what materials your exhaust system will be made of. Additional protection of any kind will, of course, increase your costs.
4. You May Run into Warranty Issues
You need to be very careful with aftermarket modifications to your exhaust system, especially if your car is still under warranty. Be sure to check your car owner manual and any other documentation to make sure that modifying your exhaust won't affect the warranty. To remove any uncertainty, you should also consider calling up the manufacturer to double-check.
5. You May Make Too Much Noise
There can be too much of a good thing. Upgrading or modifying your car's exhaust system can give you that loud, powerful exhaust sound (also known as the exhaust note). There are laws regulating how much noise you're allowed to make, so check out what your state says about car exhaust modification, to ensure that you're not about to break any laws.
Aside from the law, you'll also need to think about where you live. Is the noise going to wake the neighbours? Are you going to be a nuisance to everyone else in your building or community? It would be a great idea to think about this before making any buying decisions.
Finding Car Exhaust Parts
If you've made up your mind and you're ready to modify your car's exhaust, look no further than CarPart’s Auto Part Finder. Here, you can submit a request for the exhaust part you're looking for, which will then go out to 500+ suppliers all over Australia. Then, sit back, relax, and wait for offers to come in. Neat way to ‘search’ for parts, don’t you think? Get a quote now!
By Ray Hasbollah