You may find pre-bends exhaust pipes in the market, but they come at a high price. Bending exhaust pipes at home is a great way to get the custom fit bend and save some bucks. But, you must know the right procedure to avoid any breakage. Check out how to clean exhaust tips to avoid any damage while cleaning.
If you got your best sounding exhaust for F-150 and struck at bent exhaust pipes while DIY installation, this blog post is an excellent rescue.
How to measure the exhaust bend?
Measure the exhaust bend at the start of the bend to the center of the pipe at the center of the bend. The measured distance is the radius of the bent. Now measure the distance from one leg of the bend towards the other leg of the bend. It should stand twice the distance of the radius.
There are broadly two ways of bending an exhaust pipe:
- Using a Mandrel Pipe Bender
- Using Filled Pipe Technique.
Let us discuss the steps of each method one by one:
Mandrel Pipe Bender
It is an effective way to bend the exhaust pipe without causing any deformation. The solid insertion inside the exhaust pipe ensures that the pipe remains firm during the process.
Steps to bend the exhaust pipe using a Mandrel Pipe bender
1) Mark the point where you want to bend the pipe by measuring it in the first place. The measurement should be from one end of the pipe to the point where you want to bend the pipe towards the far wall of the curve.
2) Now, line up the exhaust pipe on the mandrel pipe bender from the indicator mark. It will appear as a triangle or a diamond.
3) Now, using the mandrel pipe bender, bend the exhaust pipe up to the desired angle and check it is bent to that angle or not. Make the needed adjustment to achieve the required angle to fit the given wall curve perfectly.
According to moparmax.com, it is an easier and more effective way of DIY bending the exhaust pipes. The only downside is it is expensive. An average mandrel pipe bender costs you between $10000 – $50000. To get away with this, people use another DIY exhaust pipe bending method – The filled Pipe Technique
Filled Pipe Technique
It is an inexpensive way to bend pipe at home without any expensive tooling to invest in. The same filled pipe resists any deformation and achieves the desired pipe bent.
Here are the steps one need to follow to bend exhaust pipes using the filled pipe technique:
1) Mark the point where you need to bend the exhaust pipe.
2) Now, fill the pipe with mud and place the cap towards the ends.
3) Fit the pipe tightly in the vise by lining up the mark just passing the vise. Make sure that the mark is visible. While tightening up the vise, make sure it should not be too loose to allow the pipe to move, and neither should it be too tight to cause a bend in the pipe metal.
4) Using a blow torch, heat the metal to turn it malleable. If the metal is hotter inside, there will be lesser compression, and the pipe is less prone to tear on stretching. Heating inside the pipe is more effective than outside.
5) Once bent, take up the point to the point of installation to verify it is bent accurately, or you need some adjustments.
6) If you require the adjustments, put the pipe back to the vise. Pull the pipe in the needed direction gently. Now reheat the bent.
7) Check the bend and clean the sand as per the required angle. After removing all the sand, flush out the remaining stick to the pipe using a splash of water.
8) Make sure to dry out the exhaust pipe before installation to avoid any corrosion.
Frequently Asked Questions
When does a bend exhaust pipe turn bad?
A bent exhaust pipe turns terrible when it starts restricting the airflow. It should be fixed immediately to avoid damage to your engine. When the exhaust pipe’s airflow slows, the vehicle engine works harder. The engine performance dipped tremendously and caused damage to the internal parts.
Should I Bend the exhaust pipe?
Yes, it would help to bend the exhaust pipe to fit it correctly to the vehicle’s bottom. However, while bending the pipe, make sure not to turn it so sharply that it restricts the airflow and defeats the primary purpose of the exhaust pipe. You may also get pre-bent pipes from the market, but they are pretty expensive.
Does my car performance affect by the damaged exhaust?
A damaged exhaust will not affect the car’s performance, but a restricted airflow does. Any hole in the exhaust line leads to leaking of precious vacuum that can decrease the vehicle performance. Hence, it would help if you fixed your vehicle’s exhaust to maintain its performance.
Bending the exhaust pipe is a common practice among most automobile enthusiasts. There are many ways to do it, but the filled pipe technique is the cheapest and easiest way. This technique requires no special tools and can be done at home.