Emissions control systems are standard on modern vehicles. If you drive a late-model car, chances are that it is equipped with various components that are designed to reduce emissions from your engine. One such component is the air injection hose, which works to deliver extra air to the exhaust system, in order to convert carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide. Essentially, it takes air from outside your car, and then pumps it through to the exhaust system. If it fails, then the exhaust system will not get enough air. You probably won’t notice a huge decrease in performance, but your vehicle will indisputably be delivering more pollutants into the atmosphere.

Every time you drive, from the minute you start up your car to the time that you turn it off, the air injection hose is doing its job. The life of your air injection hose isn’t measured in terms of how many miles you drive, or how often you drive, and you might never have to replace it. However, the fact is that any type of automotive hose is vulnerable to deterioration due to age. Like any other rubber component, it can become brittle. It is usually best to have your hoses inspected regularly (every three to four years) to determine if they have become worn and need to be replaced.

Signs that you need to replace your air injection hose include:

  • Cracking
  • Dryness
  • Brittleness
  • Check Engine Light comes on
  • Vehicle does not pass emissions test

If you think you’re your air injection hose may have become compromised, and needs to be replaced, have it checked out by a qualified mechanic. They can check out all of your automotive hoses, and replace the air injection hose and others if needed.

This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How Long Does an Air Injection Hose Last? and was authored by Valerie Johnston.


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