How to Buy a Good Quality Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) Valve

The exhaust gas recirculation valve (EGR valve) serves to dramatically reduce the emissions that are key contributors to pollution in the air. While EGR systems were not routinely added to engines until 1973, nearly all engines produced or on the road today have an EGR system in place.

When functioning under normal parameters, the EGR system does not cause a load on engine performance. However, a leaking or inoperative EGR system can cause load issues such as knocking or pinging as well as a range of other drivability problems.

EGR valves work by creating a small and calibrated “leak” between the exhaust and intake manifolds. This passageway allows some of the exhaust to be circulated back into the engine; however, this amount must be closely controlled by the EGR valve as a large leak leads to significant reductions in engine performance and drivability.

A couple things to keep in mind to make sure you’re getting a good quality EGR valve:

  • Newer vehicles have an electronic EGR valve to control the recirculation of exhaust gas, while older systems utilize a vacuum-related EGR valve. You will need to consult a mechanic or your product manual in order to assure you’re looking at the correct type of EGR valve for your particular vehicle.

  • There are six main types of EGR valves, all of which were used in a specific era in vehicle manufacturing. The ported EGR valves were used from around 1973 – 1980, positive backpressure EGR valves and negative backpressure EGR valves were both used from 1973 on, pulse-width modulated electronic EGR valves and digital electronic EGR valves were in use from the late 1980s to the 1990s, and the most recent version are the linear electronic EGR valves which started appearing in the 1990s through today.

  • There are some vehicles that don’t even have EGR valves – these cars have VVT (variable valve timing) instead, but have the same effect as EGR.

  • Incorrect installation of an EGR system can cause pinging, rough idles and misfiring, as well as starting difficulties

  • When replacing this part, it’s best to keep the old part until you receive the new one to assure they match exactly. An OEM part is best, simply because there are so many different varieties on the market.

  • You may need your vehicle’s VIN to ensure you’re getting the right part.

While EGR valves can be complex, as long as you keep your current part until you’re ready to replace it, you should be able to get a replacement part that will work just like new.

YourMechanic can install or replace an EGR valve for you.


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Recent Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve Replacement reviews

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Chris

22 years of experience
2001 reviews
Chris
22 years of experience
Dodge Charger - Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve - Costa Mesa, California
We are truly happy with Chriss. He gained 2 loyal customers. He arrived early and completed the work quickly and efficiently. Thank you again for taking the time to come out and doing a great job.
Mercury Grand Marquis - Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve - Sun City, California
Always a pleasure to deal with knowledgeable and honest people. With use again with our fleet, and have already referred him to others.

Travis

18 years of experience
102 reviews
Travis
18 years of experience
Nissan Frontier - Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve - Ladson, South Carolina
Travis was very professional and hard-working. He even got a special tool that he needed and did not stop until the job was complete.. comes highly recommended .

Caz

17 years of experience
57 reviews
Caz
17 years of experience
Acura TL - Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve - Atlanta, Georgia
Caz was very knowledgeable & friendly. I truly appreciated his explanation of what was happening with my vehicle.

Luis

15 years of experience
130 reviews
Luis
15 years of experience
Isuzu Axiom - Exhaust Gas Recirculation/EGR Valve - Las Vegas, Nevada
Luis is a great mechanic who gets the job done in a timely and professional manner. I was so impressed with his services that I booked him for a future appointment to perform more work on my car.

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