How Exhaust Systems Work (Page 2)

Continued from Page 1 of "How Exhaust Systems Work"
In other words, exhaust gasses have to travel for quite a while after exiting the actual engine's cylinders, during which time they lose velocity/pressure, heat, sound and some of their initial elements. That's what an exhaust on a modern car does.

There are a couple of misconceptions flying around about exhaust systems, and one of the most common is the fact that a sports muffler can increase the horsepower of an engine. That couldn't be further from the truth, since the muffler's single purpose in life is to further quiet the exhaust note enough for the car to pass inspections.

Getting back to those dreadful exhaust gasses, there's another short story to be told. Since every internal combustion engine out there works in so-called cycles, exhaust gasses aren't exactly a continuous stream.

With each opening and closing of the exhaust vales on the cylinders, the gasses will flow and then stop for brief moments of time, thus creating continuous pulses instead of a continuous stream.

Another myth that is not always true is the fact that the larger an exhaust system is, the more power the engine attached to it will produce. This actually very much depends on the type and power of the engine we are talking about.

For example, in turbocharged engines, the turbos situated on the exhaust do much of the cooling and sound minimizing of the gasses coming out of the engine, so the rest of the exhaust system has to be designed according to that.

Different cars have different exhausts, but the general idea is that the more powerful a car is, the larger exhaust it will have - the only limit in road cars being the sound and emissions control enforced by various governments. If you really want to increase the horsepower of your car though, a complete sports exhaust system is key, don't waste your money on just new mufflers.
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About the author: Alex Oagana
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Alex handled his first real steering wheel at the age of five (on a field) and started practicing "Scandinavian Flicks" at 14 (on non-public gravel roads). Following his time at the University of Journalism, he landed his first real job at the local franchise of Top Gear magazine a few years before Mircea (Panait). Not long after, Alex entered the New Media realm with the project.
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