You may have heard that there are many different kinds of mufflers. It turns out that not all mufflers are the same. There are certain advantages that are only available with certain kinds. Also, your muffler can have a real impact on the performance of your car. Mufflers are primarily responsible for making the exhaust system quieter, but the speed a car can expel its exhaust puts a cap on how much power the engine can produce. Specifically, the exhaust systems for cars and trucks, and the muffler in particular, can create back-pressure. This means there is a lot to consider when choosing a muffler. There are three common types of mufflers:
- Chambered muffler
- Straight pipe muffler
- Turbo muffler
This guide will focus on the straight pipe muffler exclusively, and the benefits it provides. You may be wondering what the difference is between a straight pipe muffler and a glasspack muffler. It turns out that this question is a little misleading because glasspack mufflers are actually a type of straight pipe muffler. Typically when someone says “straight pipe,” they are referring to the most traditional type of muffler of this type, which is the kind of muffler this guide will compare with glasspack mufflers. This will help you choose the highest quality exhaust mufflers.
Traditional Chambered Mufflers
Before you can talk about straight pipe mufflers, you need to understand the most common and traditional type of muffler. Almost all vehicles come with a chambered muffler on it to start, so if you want to upgrade your muffler, you will need to know how to identify and remove chambered mufflers. These devices function by having multiple internal chambers that the exhaust must navigate through. This captures the sound waves and keeps them from escaping.
Straight through mufflers like the glasspack muffler are composed entirely of a single, straight pipe. As the name implies, this allows the exhaust to go through it in a straight line, which allows it to exit the vehicle much faster. Glasspack mufflers are essentially a large pipe, with a smaller pipe inside. The gap between these two tubes is packed with fiberglass, which is where the name “glasspack” comes from. The exhaust travels through this gap and the fiberglass absorbs the sound.
Straight Pipe Mufflers
The traditional straight pipe muffler is only slightly different. It is also composed of a single pipe, but this pipe has holes in it and is surrounded by a chamber, which is commonly full of fiberglass. As the exhaust travels through the pipe, the sound waves pass through the holes and get absorbed by the fiberglass.
Straight Pipe vs. Glasspack Mufflers
Both of these types of mufflers offer the same advantage over chambered mufflers: better performance. That is the priority for both straight pipe and glass pack mufflers. Additionally, they both have the disadvantages of needing special installation and absorbing less noise. Glasspack mufflers are a little more specialized, and as such are harder to find and more expensive. If you value performance above all else, and want your vehicle to sound as powerful as it is, you may want to switch your chambered muffler for a straight pipe or glasspack muffler.