Time for a new exhaust…..

Souhan's Exhausts Being a petrol head at heart, when the exhaust on her VW Golf had reached the end of its life Suzanne Keane wasn’t able to just settle for a standard off-the-shelf replacement and was determined to upgrade to stainless steel…..

Exhausts – Big or small, loud or quiet – every car has one and it’s not generally something you take any notice of until it goes wrong!

But it’s not just that pipe sticking out the back – all cars since 1992 are fitted with a catalytic converter to control emissions and newer diesels will also have a DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter) to remove diesel soot from the exhaust emissions.

So how would you know you need a replacement exhaust?

Usually a change in sound is a giveaway – this can vary from a rattle to a slight popping/gurgling sound all the way to the full on tractor roar! If you know your own car more than likely you will notice the change in tone. This change in sound is caused by gas leaking from the exhaust – which means you may also notice a strange smell coming into the car, which gets worse when you open the windows. This is gas leaking into the cabin which is never a good idea!!

Of course if you miss the warning signs an NCT failure will be a good sign it’s time for a replacement!!

Souhans ExhaustsI had known for a while my exhaust was leaking, the burbling when it started was a giveaway but the real wakeup call was when I hit a pothole one day and it started to sound like a lawnmower! This I could ignore (turn up the radio) but the stink in the car and the rattle when I put it in reverse was just embarrassing…..

So that’s when my online research started – what were the different options? What did I actually want and where would I get it? Only one company made the stainless steel exhaust I wanted off the shelf – with hidden tailpipes (a discreet downturned pipe behind the bumper) but the cost of the exhaust alone couldn’t be justified for what wasn’t a performance car – even before delivery and fitting costs were taken into account.

Exhaust Man

After weeks of research, plenty of recommendations and just about when the back box was about to fall off  I made the 300 km trip to Souhans in Co. Meath to have a new exhaust custom made for my car.

While I was there I had a chat with Darren and John Souhan to find out what other services they offer and why they are different to most exhaust garages.

“We can manufacture any exhaust for any Vehicle. We can actually make the exhaust while your car is with us. That means regardless of whether the vehicle is an everyday car or something more unusual like a vintage, 4×4, import, motorbike or anything else you can think of we can make an exhaust for it.”

After talking to Darren on the phone I decided to go with a custom stainless steel exhaust for my Golf – A custom exhaust is made to suit your car 100% which is ideal if what you want isn’t available off the shelf (i.e. for an unusual car or even simply if you want to choose the tailpipe design) but because they have the equipment for making these customised parts even if just a small part of your exhaust is rusted or cracked they can repair/patch just that part and save you the cost of replacing the whole exhaust. According to John it’s rare that an entire exhaust will need to be replaced and usually a small repair piece will solve the problem.

Even if you’d just like to add in some shiny tailpipes to bling up the back of your car they can do it!

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Rotten Exhaust

My old exhaust

Rotten Exhaust

The cause of the rattle….

Author: Suzanne Keane

A confirmed petrol head with a penchant for Retro VW’s, Suzanne has been taking apart (and sometimes putting back together) her own cars for years! You can follow Suzanne on Twitter at @_suzannekeane

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