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VIEW SOLUTIONS TO COMMON PROBLEMS
Exhaust Manifold Bolts
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Operation: The exhaust manifold will often have a heat shield. The heat shield protects nearby parts from the searing heat that radiates from the exhaust manifold during engine operation. Advice: In most cases if there is a heat shield it will have to be removed to gain access to the exhaust manifold bolts. The heat shield is usually held in place with a couple of small screws or bolts. These small screws are often easy to break. Spraying them with a good penetrating oil and allowing it to soak in before attempting to remove them will lessen the chances of breakage. Recommendations: Penetrating oil Patience
Operation: Exhaust manifold bolts hold the exhaust manifold(s) to the cylinder head. Advice: Exhaust manifold bolt damage in the way of head stripping and/or breakage is a common problem. To help avoid this headache, spray a good penetrating oil generously over all of the exhaust manifold bolts and allow to soak in for ten or fifteen minutes. Repeat this process a couple of times while you work on other areas. Always use a six point socket or six point box end wrench to loosen exhaust system bolts. A twelve point wrench, socket or an open end wrench could easily strip the head of a corroded bolt. Recommendations: Penetrating oil Six point socket set Six point box end wrench set
Advice: Before installing the new exhaust manifold gaskets it is very important to compare the new gaskets with the old ones. All passages must align correctly for proper sealing of the exhaust manifold to the cylinder head.
Operation: Some intake and exhaust manifold combinations use a shared or joined gasket. Advice: When the intake and exhaust manifolds are located on the same side of the head, they often share a gasket, or their gaskets are joined together to ease the assembly process. This style of intake/exhaust manifold setup will usually have several bolts that pull down on both manifolds at the same time. These bolts will often have a large flat or convex washer to distribute the load evenly across both manifolds. Ensure that these washers are properly in place and not cocked to one side before tightening the bolts. Always tighten the bolts to specifications in small increments following the correct tightening sequence found in the repair guides. Recommendations: Repair guides
Operation: The exhaust pipes carry exhaust gas from the engine to the back of the vehicle. Advice: The main reason for exhaust pipe replacement is rust. Most external rust is caused by salt placed on roads or in climates such as Florida. Internal rust can be caused by excessive moisture and acids trapped in the exhaust system. This happens when a vehicle is continually driven on short trips which will not allow the acid like contaminants to evaporate in time causing rust and corrosion, which will create leaks in the exhaust components. There are several products available to patch small holes in the exhaust pipes. Keep in mind that if one rust hole is visible, several more will develop soon afterwards. Pre-bent exhaust pipes are available and are easy to install preventing repeated exhaust hole repairs. Recommendations: Pre-bent replacement exhaust pipes.
Operation: Exhaust clamps are used to seal two sections of pipe or a section of pipe to the muffler or catalytic converter. Advice: Exhaust clamps are installed with enough pressure to crimp the two sections of pipe. They are usually installed with an air gun, and tend to distort a little as needed to create the seal. This distortion along with rust makes reusing old exhaust clamps unwise. The money spent on new clamps is cheap insurance of a leak free system. Recommendations: New exhaust clamps.
Operation: The catalytic converter causes a chemical reaction to occur in the exhaust stream changing the harmful hydrocarbons (HC) into harmless water vapors (H2O) and carbon monoxide gases (CO) into harmless carbon dioxide (CO2). A three way converter also changes harmful nitrogen oxides (NOX) into harmless nitrogen and oxygen. Advice: A catalytic converter typically will not fail on it's own. Normal reasons for replacement are either because of rust holes or restricted or plugged passages. Rust holes can develop from moisture in the system especially if the vehicle is driven on frequent short trips where the engine is not running long enough to burn off the condensation in the pipes. Restricted or plugged passages are generally caused by raw fuel passing through the converter. This raw fuel is usually the byproduct of a cylinder that is misfiring or a fuel system that is running too rich. If you do not correct the problem that destroyed the original converter, the new one will suffer the same fate.
Operation: The job of the muffler is to reduce the noise created by the exploding air/fuel mixture inside the combustion chamber. It does this by smoothing out the pulses of pressurized exhaust gases allowing them to expand and cool resulting in reduced pressure and noise at the outlet. Advice: Check the muffler for rust holes caused by moisture trapped in the system. Sometimes you will find metal seams that are split due to a backfiring engine. Remember, if you do not correct the problem that destroyed the original muffler, the new one will likely suffer the same fate. Diagnose and correct the problem that destroyed the original muffler before replacing it with a new one.
Operation: Some vehicles use a resonator to further reduce the noise level at the tailpipe. Advice: Although resonators are not replaced as often as mufflers, they share the same failure points. If your vehicle has a resonator, be sure to include it in your search for exhaust leaks.
Operation: Exhaust hangers are strategically placed to suspend the exhaust system, spreading the load evenly so as not to strain any one section. Advice: Although simplistic in design, exhaust hangers play an important role in the longevity of an exhaust system. Missing or broken hangers can cause a physical strain on that part of the system causing noises and leading to the possibility of an exhaust leak. Recommendations: Replace any missing or broken exhaust hangers.
Operation: High combustion chamber temperatures are considered responsible for spark knock or pinging as well as the formation of nitrogen oxides (NOX) in the exhaust stream. The term EGR stands for Exhaust Gas Recirculation. The EGR valve injects small amounts of exhaust gas into the intake manifold at the appropriate times, in an effort to control combustion chamber temperatures reducing the possibility of spark knock and the formation of NOX. Advice: One of the largest causes of EGR system problems can be attributed to carbon particles getting caught up in the EGR valve pintle. An easy way to prevent this from happening is to install an EGR Klean Screen Carbon Filter Gasket before you start having EGR system problems. This inexpensive preventive maintenance measure can lengthen the life of your EGR system and save you the cost of premature EGR valve replacement. Recommendations: EGR Klean Screen Carbon Filter Gasket
Operation: The AIR (Air Injection Reaction) System pumps fresh air to the exhaust ports and to the catalytic converter in an effort to reduce emissions by promoting the complete combustion of the air fuel mixture. Advice: The most common reason for replacement of A.I.R. system components is corrosion. Spray a generous amount of penetrating oil on the threads of the component that you are trying to remove and allow it to soak in before attempting disassembly. Recommendations: Penetrating oil