The inspection of a vehicle's exhaust system is a critical test. A faulty tailpipe can be the reason why an engine fails this test. Being thorough, specific, and knowing what to check is crucial when inspecting any tailpipe.

What should you look for?

  1. Clogged air filter
  2. Malfunctioning oxygen sensor
  3. Vacuum-leak present
  4. Contaminated or dirty engine oil
  5. Incorrect ignition timing
  6. Air to fuel mixture may be incorrect
  7. Ineffective, missing, or clogged catalytic converter
  8. Malfunctioned EGR (Exhaust Gas Re-Circulation)
  9. Malfunctioned internal engine parts.

How did That Happen?

These types of inspections must be very specific to get to the cause of the issue and fix it. Let’s look at the specificity of tailpipe inspections and where the root problems may arise.

  • Worn spark plugs.
  • Worn spark plugs can lead to increased emissions of gases from your vehicle, which is why they should be regularly inspected and replaced if necessary.
  • Air to fuel mixture. In the worst-case scenario, a rich-running condition can dump too much raw fuel through the system, and the catalytic converter can burn out. It may happen because of a defective oxygen sensor or malfunctioning injectors. One should pay attention to these components and check if they work properly.
  • Damaged catalytic converter. Before an emission test, you should inspect your vehicle’s catalytic converters. If they are ineffective, missing, clogged, or damaged in any other way, they can’t convert toxic gases into gases that are less harmful to the environment.
  • Defects in the EVAP. EVAP stands for Evaporative Emission Control System. If your vehicle’s EVAP system is not functioning properly, it will contribute to atmospheric pollution because there are gasoline vapors coming out of your vehicle’s tank. Leaking vents and hoses are typically the cause of EVAP system malfunctioning, and those issues can be challenging to track down.
  • Dirty or clogged air filter. The air filter is another specific part that you should inspect, replace, or clean if necessary. A dirty or clogged air filter can cause a high level of hydrocarbons.

From spark plugs to clogged air filters, we can see from these examples that the causes of failed tailpipe tests can come from the malfunction of different parts of the vehicle. Therefore, certain inspections are so specific that they consist of a systematic, thorough, and point-to-point check of various aspects of the vehicle’s operations and structure. That's why we designed The Checker Software to be a customizable tool. The entire fleet of any organization can be managed and maintained just the way it should be.


Much of the problems that develop with vehicles are a result of poor maintenance. Your vehicles can go a long way if you simply take proper care of your fleet and perform maintenance tasks regularly. The Checker Software is customizable, easy-to-use, and designed for just such a purpose as managing vehicle inspections.


Tags: safety management, inspection management, inspection best practices, vehicle safety, inspection forms


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