What is the exhaust air pump?New exhaust air pump in Hamilton

The exhaust air pump (also known as the smog pump or air injection pump) is an important emissions control device. Its role is to push air into the exhaust system to help ensure that any unburnt fuel is completely burnt. This results in cleaner, less smoky emissions. This process is commonly referred to as secondary air injection. 

The pump is accompanied by a check valve, which prevents air from re-entering the air injection system and damaging the pump. If the pump or valve fail, several problems may occur and your car will produce a higher level of emissions. In New Zealand, your car must pass an exhaust smoke level emissions test in order to receive its Warrant of Fitness.

Emission WOF requirements in New Zealand >


Symptoms of a faulty air pump:

  • Engine running rough – When the exhaust air pump fails, the air/fuel ratios inside your engine can be affected due to insufficient air pressure. The engine may idle loudly / erratically, produce audible misfires or stall frequently.
  • Reduced engine power – An incorrect air/fuel ratio will also affect your engine’s overall power and performance due to subpar burning conditions. Reduced engine power may lead to slower acceleration as well as increased fuel consumption.
  • Increased emissions – If the air pump is failing, you may notice that your car is producing excess emissions in the form of smoke from your exhaust pipe.
  • Burning smell – If the air pump is overheating or malfunctioning, it may produce a burning smell, which can be an indication of a serious problem that requires immediate attention.
  • Strange noises coming from car – A faulty exhaust air pump may make unusual noises, such as whining or grinding, which can be heard from under the hood.
  • Check engine light – Any inconsistencies in your engine’s air/fuel ratio can trigger the check engine light on your dashboard. Plugging a fault code and live data reader into your car may provide you with a more detailed description of the problem.
    Engine light diagnostics in Hamilton >

If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to have your car inspected by a qualified mechanic to determine the cause of the problem and prevent further damage.


Can you drive with a broken exhaust air pump?

Yes, you can safely drive with a broken exhaust air pump, but it is not recommended. The exhaust air pump is an important component of a car’s emission control system, and its failure can lead to increased emissions, reduced performance, and potential damage to other components of the engine.

A broken exhaust air pump can also lead to your car failing its Warrant of Fitness due to excess emissions. When this happens, it will need to be fixed before you can legally drive on New Zealand roads.


Air Pump / Smog Pump Diagnostics and Replacement in Hamilton

Is your car in need of a new air pump / smog pump? If so, we can help! At Grimmer Motors, our team of experienced mechanics can diagnose and service your exhaust and secondary air injection system. This will allow for improved emissions and optimum engine performance. For exhaust air pump replacement in Hamilton, contact Grimmer Motors today!

Please Note – we don’t generally stock or supply just “parts only” for this service. We are a general automotive repair workshop. If you are able to bring your vehicle to us, we can diagnose the problem, find and fit the necessary parts, or organise the appropriate service for you.


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