Shop Tips: What’s blowing out your tailpipe?

Nov 5, 2013

Aftermarket exhaust could become a thing of the past if we as an industry do not remain diligent.

Lawmakers, while well meaning can sometimes be less than completely informed on the subject; and that can have tragic consequences. It is up to every one of us to make sure we keep an eye on exhaust regulations, and participate as necessary to keep that sound we love alive.

Exhaust regulations may not seem like the most exciting cause to take up, but think about it. What if the deuce you’ve been working on suddenly had to meet current production vehicle emissions standards? How’s that blown 502 going to perform and sound when you reengineer everything just to meet those standards?

Your favorite mufflers-the ones you run on all your projects because they have “the right sound”? How about if they were flat-out illegal? What if every car on the road was forced to be no louder than a Prius? It could happen. It’s been tried.

Maybe you’re not a hot rodder. Maybe you’re a resto man. Loud exhaust isn’t an interest of yours or your customers. But there’s no way you can have a correct points restoration if the laws say you must meet current emissions standards. Unless of course you’re happy with them all being (Gasp!) trailer queens-and never seeing another road mile.

Not only can this affect all of us on the back end-meaning drivers and builders; it could cost many people their very jobs, and close entire companies. Reengineering and retooling an entire product isn’t cheap. It’s a cost many companies couldn’t afford and they’d be forced to close their doors.

– Excerpted from Hotrod & Restoration, November 2013. Click here to read the complete article in the Digital Version of the November issue.