Exhaust – It’s More Than Smoke And Loud Tail PipesFebruary 16, 2020
You may lack the skills and knowledge to inspect your vehicle’s catalytic converter. Your fuel pump may be similarly outside your comfort zone. Likewise, your head gasket, engine block, and pistons might be among the long list of parts that you’re happy to let your mechanic handle. But there are several maintenance items you should get into the habit of checking on a regular basis.
Mechanic school is pretty serious – with all those courses on drivability, fuel and ignition systems, diesel engines, etc. – but try not to get too wrapped up in it. There are other aspects of life. Remind yourself of them regularly! Take the occasional night off from studying for your auto mechanic course. Go to the movies. Pull out your old skateboard. Go bowling or hit the bars with some friends. Put down that climate control manual and let loose.
When it came time to replace the worn out exhaust, including the scrap catalytic converter price guide, Ed Schwerer of Ed’s Auto Works had a solution that would stop the endless replacing of damaged O2 sensors.
This time, however, things are a bit different. For one thing, we are certainly 30 years closer to “really” running out of oil…and we are tired of being held hostage by the eleven OPEC countries…most of whom are quite unstable on many levels. What to do, what to do. Well, we’ve (the big oil companies) been seen as a conglomerate of evil for years…and, as of late, trying to fight those global warming activists to keep the oil flowing, gas burning and engines pumping…and we’re compliant with EPA regs…just look at those recycle catalytic converters and the CO2 they make! But, people hate us still. And, the global warmers of the world are making it look like we are the figurehead for the new “blackened” Earth, because we are going to burn ourselves up…don’t you know.
Does it smoke? With the engine running, take the oil fill cap off the valve cover. If smoke comes out, the rings or valves are shot and you need to leave now. It will be an expensive repair and perhaps a complete catalytic converter recycler engine rebuild.
Don’t buy a car from a friend! That’s always a bad deal! The only “help” happening in this kind of deal is that your friend is getting rid of a problem and now you’re stuck with it! Don’t buy from a friend!
The O2 sensors also tell DME if the air from the air pump is reaching the catalyst. If the secondary air injection system is working properly DME should see a drop in voltage in a conventional O2 sensor. On the newer A/F sensors the technician will need to access fuel trim data to see if the fuel system is trying to adjust when the air pump is artificially triggered. So the air pump pumps air but there are some mechanical controls in the way of the air actually getting to the exhaust side of the equation. There is a vacuum switchover valve (VSV) and a vacuum operated “Dump Valve” that when vacuum is applied by way of the VSV allows air to enter the exhaust through a check valve which keeps exhaust gasses from returning through the “Dump Valve” damaging it and the pump.
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