Your Exhaust System - Muffler Definition

Muffler Definition

Most people know that they have a muffler on their vehicle, but would they be able to give you a simple muffler definition? The Collins English Dictionary defines a muffler as "any device designed to reduce noise, especially the tubular device containing baffle plates in the exhaust system of a motor vehicle." In this post, we will break down that muffler definition and describe in easy to understand terms how a muffler works. Contact us if you think your muffler is not working properly.


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What Does A Muffler Do?

As our definition states, a muffler is a device that reduces noise. So why does your vehicle need a muffler? Well, simply put, your engine generates an incredible amount of noise as it releases thousands of mini gas explosions into the exhaust pipes. These bursts of sound bounce around inside the pipes to create an extremely loud and annoying sound. A muffler is mounted in line with the exhaust pipes. As the noise from the gas bursts enter the muffler, the sound waves bounce against the baffles. Baffles are metal tubes with holes in them which restrict the air flow from the exhaust.  The baffles produce opposing sound waves which when they collide, cancel each other out.

Muffler Designs

Designing a muffler is similar to an acoustical engineer designing a concert hall. They design the chambers and baffles of the muffler to produce the desired sound effect. Most mufflers are designed to minimize noise, whereas others are designed to give an amplified growl effect. If you look inside a muffler, you will find a simple arrangement of tubes with small holes or perforations in them. The tubes are designed in such a way that they reflect sound waves. when the waves hit, they essentially cancel each other out. Some other designs use fiberglass packing to absorb the sound waves as the gas passes through it. There are three basic muffler designs: Chamber, Turbo, and Straight through. For a detailed yet simple explanation of these 3 basic designs, watch the video below.

Sign Your Muffler Needs Replacing

The biggest enemy of your entire exhaust system and in particular your muffler is rust. Once your muffler rusts through it will need to be replaced. A sure sign that your muffler needs replacing is if you have a deep or loud rumbling sound coming from your car. It is important to replace your muffler as soon as you suspect you have a problem. If you wait too long, not only will the noise increase but other problems may develop in your car's operating system.

Replacing a muffler is difficult, so contact the professionals at Hansma Automotive if you need assistance. You will find that the cost of a new muffler will vary greatly. Remember, you get what you pay for. If you plan to keep your vehicle for a long time it is worth the investment to purchase a good quality muffler that will last. A high-quality stainless steel muffler can last for years and some even come with a lifetime warranty. All of the mufflers installed by Hansma automotive come with a lifetime warranty. If your muffler needs replacing, book an appointment with one of our technicians. Typically it will take about 2 hours or less to replace a muffler, depending on the vehicle and whether any of the exhaust pipes need to be replaced. Hansma Automotive is conveniently located at 88 Shoemaker Street in Kitchener, Ontario.


How Mufflers Work
The Free Dictionary - Muffler Definition
What Do Mufflers Do?
The Exhaust System
Exhaust pipe/muffler picture - By The original uploader was Steevven1 at English Wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.) [CC BY 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons
Isuzu muffler picture - By Tennen-Gas (Own work) [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or CC BY-SA 2.5-2.0-1.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
For Collins English Dictionary:
muffler. (n.d.) Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014. (1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014). Retrieved April 11, 2016 from

Posted on May 16, 2016 .