Having too much work to get done with, you take your motorbike and go out for work. Suddenly, while making a sharp turn, you hear a loud screech. As if something rubbed against your bike’s surface. You get down and notice that the sidewalk dents your motorbike’s exhaust pipe. Nevertheless, you keep on going as it isn’t that much of an issue. But that’s not it; you should repair it as soon as possible. Dents in motorcycle exhaust pipes can affect the performance of your bike. So, a question arises: How to repair dented motorcycle exhaust?
Well, don’t worry, you will get all the information in this guide.
How To Repair Dented Motorcycle Exhaust?
Dents in exhaust pipes can cause serious problems in your bikes. If there is a dent in the exhaust pipe, it can limit the airflow through the pipe. To allow the air to pass freely, repair the dents in the pipe.
But you might ask how to repair a dent in motorcycle exhaust? Well, you can use different methods to remove the dents. One of the famous methods is the Torch method. So, one question arises: Can you use the dent pullers instead of the torch method?
However, the dent pullers are good for regular body dents. But since you’ll have a dent in the exhaust pipe that is made of metal. It’ll be useless, as it works only on flat and flexible surfaces.
The torch method is popular but dangerous. In this, you heat the exhaust pipe, so it is easier to be shaped back to its original. For this, you’ll have to follow a few steps.
The first one is to thoroughly clean the pipe two or three times with a hose to ensure that the pipe has no gas residue.
Then, the exhaust pipe must be pressurized with air. This air will help fix the pipe’s shape back to its original form. For this, you’ll require an air compressor. A pressure of 80 or 120 psi should be inside the exhaust pipe. This pressure will depend on the dent of the pipe. It’ll also make sure the pipe doesn’t explode when you heat it with a torch.
Then comes the part where you heat the metal exhaust pipe. Before heating the pipe, you should follow a few precautions. First, make sure that you’re wearing protective gloves and safety goggles. If you don’t have gloves, you can use rags too.
Another precaution is to stay away from the heated pipe as it can burn you. Heat the pipe with a torch until it starts to glow red. Overheating it can cause the metal to melt. The heat will help dents come out easily.
When the dented area is glowing red, it’s time to repair the dent. For this, we recommend getting a professional dent hammer. These are available in a range of head shapes and sizes. But getting these can be an expensive task.
So, instead, you can use a mallet for this project. Tap the dent in a slow and circular motion. Remember, you have to shape the pipe with the mallet, so do it slowly. Because if you hammer the pipe in a quick motion, it can result in damaging the pipe.
Once you are done hammering the pipe, let it cool down to room temperature. This may take a while, but it won’t belong. Once the pipe is back to its normal temperature, you can release the air pressure and start sanding the pipe.
Keep sanding it until the metal gets back to its shiny and smooth form. And you’re good to go.
Dent In Motorcycle Exhaust Pipe – Repair or Buy
Anything from hitting a tree, bar banging, or crashes can result in dents in your bike. These dents vary in size due according to the crash etc.; if they are small in size, you don’t need to repair them. But if they are big enough to block the airflow, it can affect the bike’s performance.
If you have a dented exhaust pipe, the best solution is to get a new exhaust system. However, if there is huge damage at the muffler part, a slip-on is the most optimum.
When You Should Buy a New Exhaust Pipe
But if any other part such as the midsection or the head-pipe is damaged. Then you’d have to get a new one. Getting a new one will be a hassle as they are expensive. Now, you might ask if you can put any exhaust on the bike? Well, yes, you can.
If you have an adaptor and bracket to fit in your engine’s exhaust system, then you’re good to go. Because most aftermarket exhaust pipes are the same, the only difference is in the mid-pipe.
How To Install A New Exhaust Pipe?
Installing or removing these exhaust pipes is complicated too. First, you’ll have to replace the gas kits on the header. And at the mid-pipe, servo eliminators would be helpful for the airflow sensors.
If not, your bike’s dashboard will light up with error lights. Finally, you might have to remove the center stand to remove the exhaust pipe.
But if you don’t want to replace the whole exhaust pipe, you can replace certain pipe sections. It’ll be cheaper than replacing the entire thing. But your exhaust might not be as effective as it was.
How To Repair A Motorcycle Exhaust Pipe?
If you are planning to repair the dent, then you should consider a few things. First, a dented and repaired metal gets weakened by wear and tear. It’ll lose its sturdiness and won’t be as sturdy as it was.
Second, if you’re adept at welding and basic metalwork, then repairing dents will be cheaper. But, if you have to hire a professional to repair several dented sections, it’ll be more expensive and time-consuming than replacing the whole exhaust.
To repair the exhaust pipe, you can either use the torch method explained previously. But mind you, that method won’t work on pipes of aluminum, nickel, or tin. So, for these, you’ll have to use another option.
It’s a slow and time-consuming method. For this, you’ll have to fill the whole pipe with water and freeze it. When water freezes, it expands, unlike other substances. Why it does, that is another thing, not necessary here. When the ice has expanded, it’ll push the metal back to its original shape.
This is a slow method, and you might have to do it 3-4 times. One more thing, when water and metal meet, rust appears on the exhaust surface. So, it’s not the best solution available in the market.
Can Big Dents Be Repaired?
The first question that arises is, what is a big dent? Is it the size of the dent or the complexity of the dent?
Dents widespread on the body or the bike’s exhaust pipe will be comparatively easier to remove by any professional. But, of course, they’ll need proper tools for that. If it’s on the body and the body is made of plastic, then a glue gun puller with a mallet will do the trick.
And if it’s on the exhaust pipe and is widespread, we recommend you get a new exhaust pipe. Because it’s cheaper than repairing it. Well, you may ask, how much do big dents cost to fix?
We tried to contact most repair shops and professionals, ranging between 25$ to 70$ for smaller dents. But if they are large, they can range between 100$ to 200$. And if it requires a paint job, the repair will be quite expensive.
If there’s a complex dent with crack lines on the body, you might not find a proper fix for that. Even a professional might give up and suggest getting a new part instead. However, he won’t be at fault as the cracked dents are almost impossible to repair.
Can A Bent Exhaust Pipe Cause Problems?
Yes, it can. Slightly Dented pipes usually don’t cause problems, and they don’t usually need urgent repairs. But if your bike’s exhaust pipe is bent so that it might interrupt the flow of air from the engine to open air.
Then it can put a strain on your engine. Your engine won’t be able to push exhaust air out properly.
These bents need urgent repairs. You can either repair or replace them. If you want to repair them all by yourself, you can use the torch or ice method. However, installing a new pipe would be the better option as removing dents from the pipes weaken them.
Another thing to know is, “Do dented headers affect performance?” Yes, even though the effect on performance is minor, every biker recommends repairing the dent.
Will A Dented Exhaust Pipe Affect Performance?
A dented exhaust pipe may look like a problem, but they are not that bad when it comes to performance. Dented pipes may slightly reduce the performance of your bike. But if you have a bigger dent that changes the shape of the pipe, then it can cause problems.
Deeply dented pipes will reduce the airflow of the bike. In addition, if they are hit hard, there might be cracks from where the hot air may leak unwanted parts and damage them.
Also, the joint at the head can damage too. And in the midsection, the sensors may get damaged by this. So, it’s better to check it.
Can I Use a Motorcycle Without Exhaust?
You can use a motorcycle without an exhaust. A motorcycle’s exhaust is mainly to muffle the noise generated by the engine. Without it, your bike will be louder, so louder that it’ll be considered noise pollution. And in certain parts of the world, you might even get a ticket from a cop for it.
Apart from that, without an exhaust system, your bike’s engine will be at risk of being damaged. Due to reduced back pressure, the exhaust valves will suffer the most damage.
You’ll also experience a phenomenon called backfiring. It means some of the fuel will escape with hot fuel gases. So, your bike’s fuel consumption will slightly increase too.
Does A Loud Exhaust Use More Fuel?
You’re planning to install a loud exhaust, but they might consume more fuel. And that’s stopping you from getting a loud exhaust, well you shouldn’t be concerned, because it doesn’t matter.
A louder exhaust consumes the same fuel as the normal exhaust. So, there is no correlation between loud/quiet exhaust and fuel.
What happens is that the engine of your bike creates combustion of fuel to deliver power. This process generates a lot of noise in the engine. The exhaust system comes with a muffler to reduce this noise.
So, how loud or quiet your exhaust depends on the type of muffler equipped to it. It doesn’t affect the fuel mileage at all.
Does Hot Water Fix Dents?
It might look like someone is trying to prank you, but it’s true. You can fix some of the dents using hot water. That is because most motorcycles or vehicles come with plastic bumpers or bodies.
To fix the dents, all you have to do is pour hot water on them. Metals and plastics expand when heated up. Therefore, the hot water poured on the dented area will expand the plastic particles, thus making them easier to fix.
Then get yourself a plunger and pull the dented area out with it. This will fix the dent on the plastic body.
Can You Remove All the Dents?
No, you cannot remove all dents, even by professionals. However, if there are smaller dents on a motorcycle or vehicle, you can remove them easily.
But if there are, say, a large number of dents in the bike’s exhaust, then it’s better to get a new exhaust. Because the time and skills it’ll take to remove the dents won’t be worth getting a new one.
Another thing to add is that if there are cracks on the dents, it’s better to get a completely new part as it cannot be repaired.
To repair the exhaust pipe, you must first disconnect it from the bike and then repair the dents. But if you think that there are too many dents and getting a newer exhaust pipe is a better option.
Then you can fix almost every exhaust pipe on the bike. As long as the pipe is the same size and has the same size mid-pipe, you’re good to go.
But if you go on to hire a professional, they will be expensive. But their work will be professional with a good finishing touch.