Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Timing?

asked by on

My car can only reach speeds of like 20 to 30 mph and when I start the car and let it idol my headers glow red, I was wondering if this was a timing problem. Thanks .
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Normally, when the headers start to glow, i...

Normally, when the headers start to glow, it is a sign that there is a restriction. Typically, the headers will not begin to glow until high rpm’s are reached, which from a theoretical standpoint, are telling you that they are reaching their flow potential.

I would say that it isn’t completely impossible that a combination of factors can’t cause your issue, but I would start off by taking a look at the catalytic convertors. When they plug up, and don’t allow the exhaust to escape, the pressure and friction will cause the header pipes to begin to glow prematurely.

You may try to unbolt the headers from the collector, and see if this fixes the issue. If you need assistance with this, consider YourMechanic, as one of our mobile technicians can come diagnose your loss of power and headers firsthand to avoid any unnecessary repairs.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: How can someone tell if it's timing chain or something else that would cause the motor to freeze up? Thanks.

Remove the timing chain cover and see if the chain is intact. If the chain is broken, then either the chain can bind up on the crankshaft sprocket or the pistons can come in contact with the valves when they...

Q: I have a Audi 100 Quattro that surges while you drive once in awhile. You turn the car off and start it and a drives just fine. An

Hi There, It sounds like this may be related to misfire of some kind which may be triggered by a fuel pressure problem, but could also be triggered by many other things as well. Engine misfires can be caused by...

Q: Loss of power, no check engine light.

Hi, thanks for your question. I'd be happy to help. The clogged converter may or may not give a code. If it gives a code, it would be for an O2 sensor code. I recommend checking the fuel pressure and...

Related articles

How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.