Everything You Need To Know About Car Emissions

All vehicles produce emissions, which have harmful and dangerous effects on the environment, atmosphere, and human health when not properly regulated. A typical car emits 4.6 metric tons of carbon dioxide on average. Since your vehicle will need to be periodically tested for emissions, it’s good to know what your auto repair shop is looking for when you bring your vehicle for testing. Let’s discuss everything you need to know about car emissions.

What Are the Different Types of Emissions


When your vehicle burns fuel, various gases are emitted through the exhaust. The different types of emissions include:


Air Pollutants:


The most common air pollutants emitted by your vehicle include:


  • Carbon Monoxide: This is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas released due to incomplete combustion. When humans are exposed to carbon monoxide, it reduces the blood’s ability to carry oxygen from the lungs.
  • Sulfur Oxide: They are a group of molecules containing sulfur and oxygen. It affects the respiratory system and can irritate the eyes.
  • Nitrogen Oxides: Nitrogen and oxygen molecules combine to form nitrogen oxides. This pollutant can also cause damage to the respiratory tract when exposed.
  • Ammonia: This colorless gas has a pungent odor, making it easy to identify. It causes burning of the eyes, nose, and throat for those with extended exposure.


Air pollutants from your vehicle aren’t just dangerous to your health, but gases also cause problems such as acid rain and smog.

Greenhouse Gases:


These gases include:


  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Nitrous Oxide
  • Methane


Greenhouse gases can trap additional heat from the sun’s atmosphere and increase the Earth’s surface temperature. This is a chronic problem that impacts our environment and is expanding at a fast rate. Human activity is the leading cause of an increase in greenhouse gases. Most of these gases are obtained from burning fossil fuels. More emissions of greenhouse gases lead to an increased concentration of these gases in the atmosphere.


How Long Do These Gases Stay in the Atmosphere?


The gases we’ve mentioned above remain in the atmosphere for different amounts of time. This ranges from a few hundred years to thousands of years. The gases stay in the atmosphere long enough to be mixed with other gases, creating a growing problem for our environment.


How Much Do These Emissions Affect the Atmosphere?


Some gases and pollutants affect the environment more than others. The impact of your vehicle’s emissions truly depends on the type of pollutants and the rate at which they are dispersed into the air. To measure the effect, researchers use the Global Warming Potential (GWP) to estimate how long each pollutant will stay in the atmosphere and how strongly it will impact the environment.


Preventing Air Pollutants from Vehicle Emissions


The following measures can be taken to reduce these emissions.


1.   Driving Less:


Many alternative means of transportation decrease our need to drive. Biking, walking, skating, taking public transit, and combining all errands into one trip are a few ways you can cut back on driving.


2.   Buy a Fuel-Efficient Vehicle


Nowadays, many vehicles have fuel-efficient mechanisms that help reduce your carbon footprint. If you buy an electric car, you can reduce the number of car emissions in the atmosphere.


3.   Driving at Slower Speeds


Driving at a higher speed burns more fuel than driving at a slower pace. Therefore, taking your time on the road can help reduce emissions.


4.   Buying Better Fuel


Emissions can also be reduced by buying better-quality fuels that produce fewer emissions.


5.   Air Conditioning System Maintenance


Better air conditioning systems can also be used to help save the environment and reduce air pollutants.


6.   Routine Car Maintenance


All the cars should be serviced regularly to avoid car emissions. You may also be required to have your vehicle tested for emissions every few years. If so, you’ll get a card in the mail.


Contact Al & Sons Automotive for Your Emissions Testing


If you need emissions testing, we’re here to help! Contact Al & Sons Automotive to schedule an appointment with the most reliable Rancho Cucamonga auto repair shop.



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