Question about 1991 Toyota Corolla

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Rattling/clattering exhaust noise from front bottom

Can a rattling/clattering noise coming from the front bottom of the car
(ahead of the driver, down below) be caused by exhaust sections BEHIND the driver (cat converter or muffler)?

I had exhaust work done on a '91 Corolla and got the mesh pipe and
muffler replaced (both were rusted away). After this, the car did not
sound like an airplane any longer (which was the good part), but some
strange rattling noise is coming from the front, somewhere down below,
when I accelerate. Sometimes it is very loud, sometimes it only appears
when I accelerate really hard - cannot figure out what it depends on
(perhaps weather?). I took it back because I thought they botched the
mesh pipe installation but the mechanics said it must be the cat
converter heat shield (the top half was missing already). So they got
rid of the remaining bottom part but that made negligible difference.
Then they took a longer look, did some tests, and told me that it was
the inner pipe in the cat converter, which was not attached properly by
whoever installed it (this is an old car, the converter was welded onto
the pipes years ago). They said they drilled some holes and redid the
welding, and the noise indeed went away. But only for a week or two -
now it is coming back again. Could this really be that inner pipe of the
cat converter? Because based on that the noise is coming from the front, naively I would suspect that mesh pipe...

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It could be all of the things mentioned in your post. A loose/bent/misplaced heat shield will make noise at different engine speeds as various parts vibrate and (((RESONATE))) in harmony with engine speed. Also, a shifted/loose catalyst brick in the converter can be the culprit. If you KNOW for a fact that it IS an internal fault of the converter, it will need to be replaced. Chunks can be broken off as it rattles about and **** sideways downstream in the exhaust. This not only blocks exhaust, but can lead to a dangerous burn-through condition if the piece of hot catalyst wedges in a bend in the pipe where yo do NOT have additional heat shielding.

Posted on May 10, 2010

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