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  • Sounds Like a Hot Rod (Noisy Exhaust System)

    Jun 20, 2021

    Driving along, your exhaust system's rumbling so loud that people turn and stare at you pass by.  You're wondering when the police are going to pull you over for illegal noise.

    Your mind immediately thinks, aha! A broken muffler. 

    Well, your exhaust system is composed of many more parts than just a muffler. 

    Your engine makes power because of thousands of tiny explosions from detonating fuel.  Those explosions make a racket, so engineers came up with a system that acoustically dampens that sound in addition to getting rid of harmful exhaust.

    In the engine is the exhaust manifold that looks like several pipes that join up into one pipe.  It directs exhaust to the catalytic converter. The catalytic converter converts harmful gases into less harmful gases using certain chemical reactions.  Then comes the muffler that has baffles inside to quiet the sounds of your engine noise.  Finally: the tailpipe.

    All of those pipes and parts are joined together by clamps and held up by brackets, and they ride over some pretty bumpy roads.  They are also exposed to the elements, like salt, water, rocks and grit.  Chances are that one of those clamps or brackets has been weakened by corrosion.  When you hit a bump, bingo! The crack widens into a gap and there's a spot for the engine noise to come roaring out instead of being directed into the muffler's quieting chambers.

    You might be surprised to know that the exhaust system can rust from inside out.  How? Moisture is one component of exhaust, and moisture on the inside can do the same kind of damage as moisture from the outside. 

    It's a good idea to have your exhaust system looked at regularly by a technician.  He or she can evaluate the condition of the metal and recommend when it might be time to replace parts before they break.

    Then you'll have a decision to make.  Newer exhaust systems are made out of stainless steel that is much less prone to corrosion issues.  Others are made of aluminized steel that also fights rust.  You've probably already guessed that they can cost more, but the extra price up front may give you an exhaust system that will last much longer. 

    Sure, with a repaired exhaust system, you won't have quite the head-turning vehicle you once had.  You'll just have to live with all the quiet.


    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    PCV Valve: What Is It?

    Mar 21, 2021

    Most Brooklyn Park drivers know something about preventive maintenance on a vehicle. We know we should routinely replace the oil and wiper blades and other fluids. But have you heard of a PCV valve ? This little car part needs to be replaced regularly or it can cause some serious problems in your vehicle engine.

    PCV stands for Positive Crankcase Ventilation. The crankcase holds your motor oil and is located at the bottom of your engine.

    When fuel is burned in your engine, it produces waste gases that are mostly vented out through your exhaust system. But some of these gases push their way past the pistons and into the crankcase. There, these gases can mix with motor oil to produce oil sludge, which can damage vehicle engine parts through corrosion and by clogging engine passages. Brooklyn Park vehicle owners should be advised that if the engine is running at high speeds, these gases can also cause pressure inside the crankcase to build up. This pressure, in turn, can blow gaskets and damage seals, leading to oil leaks.

    The waste gases that leave the engine are comprised of about 70% unburned fuel. They used to be vented off the crankcase into the atmosphere. But starting in 1964, laws mandated that these gases be recaptured. Manufacturers began installing PCV systems, which recycled the gases into the air intake system where they could be mixed with fuel and sent to the engine to be burned.

    The PCV valve is a one-way valve attached to the crankcase. Waste gases exit the crankcase through the valve but cannot enter.

    Over time, the waste gases leave deposits on the PCV valve that can gum it up. So it needs to be replaced occasionally. This is an inexpensive part of preventive maintenance that is often overlooked, but which can have very expensive consequences. It's good auto advice to keep this little valve clean and working well.

    In order to maintain efficient circulation, the PCV system also has a breather tube that allows clean air to enter the crankcase. This air is usually filtered through the engine air filter. But some vehicles have a separate air filter for the breather tube called the breather element. If this is the case with your vehicle, proper maintenance of the PCV will include replacing this element. To find out whether your vehicle has this type of PCV system, check your owner's manual or ask your service advisor at Affordable Transmissions.

    The PCV system reduces harmful vehicle emissions. The maintenance it requires is simple and inexpensive at Affordable Transmissions. A fouled or damaged PCV system can lead to serious engine damage for Brooklyn Park drivers.

    Let's all learn to practice good car care. It's good for our wallets, and it's good for our MN environment.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Brooklyn Park Exhaust and Emissions Service

    Aug 9, 2020

    Many Brooklyn Park residents don't realize that there is more to exhaust system maintenance than just tailpipes and mufflers, if you can see smoke or if it's too loud. Exhaust service at a full-service automotive center like Affordable Transmissions is really a lot more comprehensive these days.

    For example, in the U.S., the federal government required catalytic converters for all cars in 1976 and on-board emission control computers in 1990. MN and federal emissions requirements have forced manufacturers to come up with much more sophisticated ways to comply with environmental laws. This also goes for cars sold in Canada.

    So, exhaust service has really become exhaust and emissions service. High-tech computer-controlled emissions devices are now necessary. And because it's so sophisticated, we recommend having your emission system checked out by a qualified technician, like the ones we have at Affordable Transmissions, regularly to make sure everything's working right – which is usually every six months or 6,000 miles/10,000 kilometers.

    If your 'check engine light' comes on while you are driving around the Brooklyn Park area, especially if it's flashing, then you need to bring your car into Affordable Transmissions ASAP. Chances are it's an emission related problem. Signs of exhaust or emissions trouble include difficulty starting, engine noise or smoke.

    We hope this hasn't been too 'exhausting' of a discussion. Remember that a properly functioning exhaust system is for MN’s health and safety. Talk with your friendly and knowledgeable service advisor at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park if you think you might need your exhaust system checked. A quick look can sure save a lot of pain down the road.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Affordable Transmissions Service for Your Exhaust System

    May 27, 2018

    Your vehicle's exhaust system is more than just a tailpipe and a muffler. In fact, it is one of the most complex systems on your vehicle.

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    The manifold is attached to the vehicle engine. It collects exhaust from the cylinders and directs it into the exhaust pipe. Gaskets seal the connection of the manifold to the engine and to other joints. A cracked or loose manifold or a leaking or damaged gasket can allow dangerous gases to enter the passenger compartment of a vehicle. One of these gases is carbon monoxide, which is colorless, odorless and deadly. For this reason, it is important American Fork residents keep their exhaust system in good repair.


    The pipes that connect the various parts of the exhaust system can rust or be damaged by rocks or other road debris. Such damage can cause dangerous gases to leak into the air.

    The catalytic converter is the next component of your vehicle exhaust system. It sort of looks like a muffler. Its job is to change dangerous gases into harmless carbon dioxide and water. The catalytic converter doesn't require any regular maintenance, but it can wear out. If it fails, you will need a new catalytic converter to pass an emissions test in MN. Call Affordable Transmissions at (763) 533-1169 if you suspect a problem with your catalytic converter.

    Oxygen sensors in the exhaust pipe monitor the oxygen content of the exhaust. This helps the vehicle engine's computer keep the fuel-to-air mixture at optimal levels.

    The muffler is also part of your vehicle exhaust system, but it deals with a different kind of emission. It keeps your vehicle from emitting bad sounds. Mufflers act like finely tuned musical instruments. They create a feedback of sound waves to absorb or decrease the noises made by your engine. Different mufflers can create different sound waves, so you can actually “tune” your car to produce a particular sound, anything from whisper to rumble.

    It is important that damaged mufflers be replaced immediately at your Brooklyn Park automotive service center, especially if they are leaking. Not only will the extra noise annoy your Brooklyn Park neighbors, a leaky muffler could be serious.

    The entire exhaust system is attached to your vehicle by hangers and clamps. These fasteners can rust, come loose or break. The components of the exhaust system can get very hot, so when the hangers or clamps fail, these hot components can come into contact with other parts such as wires and hoses. These can melt, causing serious and damage to your vehicle. Good car care requires that you have your exhaust system inspected regularly.

    Caring for your vehicle exhaust system at Affordable Transmissions yields cosmetic benefits like quieting your engine sounds, but also may impact your health and safety. Your life, or the life of a loved one, may actually be on the line.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com

     




    Affordable Transmissions Automotive Tips: Diagnostic Service

    Apr 22, 2018

    Imagine waking up one morning with a stomach ache. You pick up the phone, call the doctor’s office and say, “I’ve got a really bad tummy ache. How much will it cost to make me feel better?” Of course you wouldn’t do that. You know that there could be a lot of reasons for your symptoms and that the doctor will have to examine you, ask some questions and probably run some tests before she can tell you what’s wrong and give you treatment options.

    This same scenario plays out every day at MN auto repair facilities. When the cause of the concern isn’t obvious, the car will need to undergo a diagnostic examination. The typical car has about 30,000 parts, including several networked computers and miles of wiring. Finding exactly what is wrong can be very complicated and take some time. The most experienced technicians at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park are the ones who tackle the difficult diagnostic jobs. Once they have determined the cause of the trouble, they can work out the plan for how to fix it and tell you how much it will cost.

    When you think about it this way, it makes perfect sense that, 1) the Affordable Transmissions service advisor cannot provide an estimate before the diagnosis is done, and 2) there is a charge for auto diagnostic services in Brooklyn Park. You expect to pay for an office visit to the doctor and for any necessary tests before you can be presented with your treatment options and costs; same goes for your vehicle.

    We know it can be frustrating for Brooklyn Park drivers when something is wrong with your car and you aren’t sure what is going to be involved in getting it fixed. We are passionate about helping you through the process, communicating with you at each step along the way. We have highly trained diagnostic technicians and technologically-advanced diagnostic equipment to uncover the cause of your trouble. We use quality replacement parts to help make sure you stay on the road after the repair is done. That’s our prescription for automotive peace of mind.

    Give us a call.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com




    Exhaust Service at Affordable Transmissions: Passing the Smell Test

    Jun 12, 2016

    The exhaust system on a vehicle is more complex than most Brooklyn Park residents realize. It contains everything from old-fashioned pipes and clamps to sophisticated computers and sensors. All MN folks know a properly functioning exhaust system is good for the environment, but sometimes we forget that a damaged exhaust system can be deadly. That's why preventive maintenance on your exhaust system is so important. We can help you with that at Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park.

    The exhaust manifold is the first component in your exhaust system. The manifold is attached to the engine. It collects the gases that are produced by the engine and directs them into the exhaust pipes. At this point, these gases are both hot and chemically dangerous.

    One of the gases produced in your engine is carbon monoxide. This gas is colorless and odorless. Breathing it can cause headaches, dizziness, nausea and drowsiness. Continue breathing it and you will die.

    To keep this gas and others from entering your vehicle passenger compartment, the connections from the manifold to the engine and from the manifold to the exhaust pipes are sealed with gaskets. These connections should be routinely inspected at Affordable Transmissions for cracks and to check if they have come loose.

    The exhaust pipes can also get damaged, allowing dangerous gases to leak into your passenger compartment. These pipes can rust or be dented or broken by rocks and other roadway debris, so they need to be inspected regularly.

    The catalytic converter is the next component in your vehicle exhaust system. You can breathe a sigh of relief now, because this is where the dangerous engine gases are converted into carbon dioxide and water, greatly reducing the amount of harmful emissions in your exhaust. You'll also be happy to know that your catalytic converter doesn't require maintenance. However, it will wear out. If you fail an emissions inspection because of a faulty catalytic converter, you need to replace it.

    The muffler's job is far less critical, but far more noticeable, than the catalytic converter's. It dampens or absorbs the noise from the engine. Most Brooklyn Park residents don't realize that we can actually customize the noise our car makes with a custom muffler. You can upgrade to a muffler that will make your car sleuth-quiet, or you can advertise your presence in Brooklyn Park with a sassy rumble.

    Mufflers can also rust or be damaged by road debris. But just because their main function is to dampen out engine noise doesn't mean they can be ignored. If your muffler is leaking, you need to get it replaced quickly. Exhaust fumes need to exit through your tailpipe, not your muffler.

    The exhaust pipe contains at least one oxygen sensor. The sensor monitors the oxygen content of the exhaust, which allows it to adjust the fuel-to-air ratio in the engine. This keeps your vehicle engine running smoothly and maintains good fuel economy. So, besides keeping you and the environment healthy, a well-maintained exhaust system also keeps your vehicle healthy. The tailpipe itself can rust or get damaged by road debris, so it needs a quick inspection once in a while, too.

    The whole exhaust system is mounted on the vehicle with clamps and hangers. These clamps and hangers can come loose, rust or get dinged up by road debris. Remember that the gases in your exhaust system are hot, so the exhaust system itself gets hot. The clamps and hangers keep the exhaust system attached to the vehicle, but they also prevent the heated components from touching things they shouldn't. If you don't inspect and replace broken, loose or damaged clamps, you may end up with melted wires, hoses or lines. And that can spell some expensive repairs.

    You should schedule an exhaust system inspection as recommended in your vehicle owner's manual. Because this system is critical to your health and the health of your car, and because of its sophistication and complexity, you need to have the work done at a qualified service center such as Affordable Transmissions in Brooklyn Park.

    Maintaining your emissions and exhaust system is not just good auto advice: it's good health advice for all Brooklyn Park residents and their families.

    Affordable Transmissions
    6301 WELCOME AVE N STE 28
    Brooklyn Park, MN 55429
    (763) 533-1169
    http://www.affordabletransmission-mn.com