Common Causes of Car Exhaust Backfiring
When unburnt fuel is ignited with or without a flame in the exhaust pipe of a car, the exhaust then causes backfire or afterburn. In most cases, a loud popping noise is heard along with forwarding motion and loss of power. Besides, you may witness a car exhaust backfiring with a flame.
Car exhaust backfiring can occur due to various mechanical issues. We have compiled some of the common car exhaust popping reasons below.
What Causes a Car to Backfire
Here are some of the common reasons that cause a car to backfire:
Getting More Fuel Than Needed
If your car is running at a high fuel to air ratio, the car exhaust backfires. This is because the cylinders and exhaust contain leftover fuel, which burns and produces a loud car backfire sound.
Incorrect Engine Timing
If the ignition cycle of your car’s engine in the combustion chamber initiates late but ignites the fuel just when the exhaust valve starts opening, then it means that engine timing is incorrect. Hence, car exhaust backfiring is triggered by delayed timing. Here is a complete list of car engine parts to help you better understand the function of each.
A Cracked Distributor Cap
Cars have ignition coils on their spark plugs. Those that do not have the coils have a distributor cap and a set of wire for evenly distributing electric current in the spark plugs. In a case where the cap is cracked, the moisture can get into it. As a result, the electrical spark goes to the incorrect cylinder and causes the exhaust to backfire.
Carbon Track Formation on Spark Plug Wires
Wires generate sparks on a distributor cap that can form a carbon track. In this scenario, sparks can travel rapidly between wires. The carbon track basically serves as a shortcut for the spark, thus causing car exhaust backfiring.
Furthermore, when the spark plug wires are on the spark plug, an electrical spark is generated that divides the path and the cylinder is left with fuel in it. Therefore, the leftover fuel is struck by the next spark, while the exhaust valve remains unclosed. The quick burn caused by the strike thus triggers the exhaust to backfire.
Engine Sensor Issues
As cars have mass airflow sensors, those are responsible for calculating the amount of fuel administered into the engine based on the conditions. In case of the engine sensor malfunctioning, it sends too little fuel and as a result, disrupts the fuel and air ratio. Consequently, engine popping occurs.
The Exhaust System is Leaking
A leaking exhaust system allows more air to enter the exhaust. The oxygen levels increase, as a result, and the unburned or partially burned fuel ends up being ignited. Again, in such cases, you will hear the backfire popping noise.
Issues with the Valve Train
The train valve is responsible for opening and closing the valves, letting air and fuel slip into the combustion chamber. Another culprit of a car exhaust backfiring can be the valve train not properly sealed or opened on time. If this happens, there will be a build-up of carbon causing other mechanical issues to emerge.
We have discussed the major reasons as to why do car exhausts pop so that you know what you have to do when the car exhaust backfires. A car exhaust popping in the exhaust pipe can damage your vehicle. Also, it’s a warning for the motorist that backfiring could trigger a major problem in the car. Therefore, learning what causes a car to backfire is important. Moreover, ensure you follow a car maintenance checklist regularly to prevent expensive repairs later on that may or may not be caused by exhaust popping.
In case exhaust backfiring has damaged your car in a major way and you need to get another one, then you may opt for used cars in the UAE. Second-hand vehicles may fit in your budget and maybe quite well-maintained by the previous owner.
Stay tuned to UAE’s top auto blog for more information on vehicle repair and maintenance as well as how-to guides.