A straight pipe exhaust is the option to go for if you are looking for the ultimate sound from your engine. Thanks to its unique design, a straight pipe exhaust significantly reduces the pressure on the engine due to emissive gases.
That is all well and good, but one must know, how much does it cost to straight pipe a car? The expected cost of the install, including the labor costs, is anywhere from $1000 to $1500.
Indeed, this is expensive. But the performance increase with the increased sound output will reassure you that the upgrade is worth it.
Getting and installing a new straight pipe exhaust is not a straightforward procedure. You must have some background knowledge, so you know what you are getting into. This article aims to enlighten you with everything there is to know about a straight pipe exhaust system.
Straight Pipe VS Normal Exhausts
Both of these exhausts differ fundamentally. Not only that, as the name indicates, the exhaust uses straight pipes.
Indeed, there are designed to let out all of the engine’s emissions, but a straight pipe exhaust does not have a catalytic converter, which is something that is found in all-stock vehicle exhausts. There are no unnecessary turns that may reduce the sound output from the engine.
The exhaust that you are interested in also does not have a muffler. This allows sound to pass through unfiltered. There will be nothing holding the sound back, and you will get to experience the aggressive sound you always wanted to hear.
Benefits Of Getting The Straight Pipe Exhaust
Although many of you readers may know enough about all the pros and cons of a straight pipe exhaust system, I think it is better to discuss it if some of you are new to this.
A straight pipe exhaust system has many benefits, which are not minor but major enough that you will notice it in everyday scenarios.
Some of the pros of owning this exhaust are:
- Improved fuel efficiency
- Increased horsepower output
- Reduced engine backpressure
- Overall reduced weight, thanks to the removal of the catalytic converter and the muffler
- Improved, unfiltered, and aggressive sound
As you can see, this type of exhaust system can make your driving experience completely new. It can blow a fresh breath of life into your aging engine. The improved horsepower will also benefit truck and jeep owners that use their vehicles for towing and hauling.
What Straight Pipe Exhaust Kit To Get
Some of you may be wondering that you may need to get an exhaust system compatible with your vehicle. Well, that is where you would be wrong!
Straight pipe exhaust systems are usually universally compatible. This means that you won’t have to worry about getting a specific one for your vehicle.
All you have to make sure is that the diameter of the pipe is similar to the stock exhaust system of your car. If that checks out, then you will not have to worry about anything related to compatibility.
The only thing you will have to take care of is the brand you choose to get. As with any vehicle part, there is a lot of competition out there. From average to excellent, there are all sorts of straight pipe exhausts out there.
You should get one that not only has a fair number of ratings but is also manufactured from a reputable brand. This is the only way you can install it, without any tension, that there will be no issues with it in the future.
Can The Engine Be Damaged With A Straight Pipe Exhaust?
Now, this question has not only made many people curious but has also stopped them from buying this beast of an exhaust kit. To answer your question, no, a straight pipe exhaust system will not damage or hurt the engine in any way.
You can deduce that all by yourself. There are no turns in the pipes, no muffler, and no catalytic converter. All of these reductions translate to improvement in performance and sound.
There is no way the engine can sustain any damage, even in the long term. The fact that it reduces the back pressure from the engine significantly means that the exhaust is more beneficial for it.
Again, this answer does not apply to all straight pipe exhaust systems out there. If you buy from a shady brand that has little to no ratings, then chances are you may end up damaging the engine. But popular or known brands reduce the chance of that risk considerably.
Can A Straight Pipe Install Reduce Fuel Efficiency?
If anything, you should notice an improvement in the fuel consumption of your vehicle. There have been some people who reported worse efficiency.
I will explain the reason for that. When people normally shift from a normal to performance exhaust or a pipe one, they like to hear the engine roar.
This step on the pedal is too much to listen to that aggressive sound that they love. In cases like that, you may see a drop in fuel efficiency.
But if you keep on driving in the same manner, you might even have a few mpg improvements. The difference will not be night and day, but the more saving there is, the better.
Torque Loss With A Straight Pipe – Myth Or Not
I can give you 100% assurance that a straight pipe exhaust does not cause any decrease in a vehicle’s performance. You will see a definite improvement in everything, including the horsepower and torque.
If you are still skeptical, you should ask someone who has installed and used a straight pipe exhaust before. You will get a similar answer to this one, along with lots of praises for the upgrade. As I said before, the upgrade is worth it!
Straight Pipe Install VS A Muffler Delete
There might be many of you who don’t want to shell out an excess of a thousand dollars just for a sound increase. There are some other alternatives that you will definitely like. One example is a muffler delete. You remove the muffler altogether.
There is a definite sound increase, but it is still nothing compared to a straight pipe exhaust. With a muffler delete, there is a high probability that the sound gain will be more than enough for your liking.
Legal Issues With A Straight Pipe Exhaust
Unfortunately, a straight pipe exhaust kit is illegal in the United States. The reason for that is it does not have a muffler with it. The common law implemented in all USA states is that there should be no removal or modification of the muffler of any vehicle.
Well, that makes this exhaust completely illegal. Unless you intend to go on the wrong side of the law, it is better to avoid a straight pipe exhaust kit.
Plus, you are bound to be stopped by an officer in blue due to the excessive sound of the intake. They may not be pleased, and there is a chance that they may find you for disturbance.
Issues With A Straight Pipe Exhaust
Users have reported a few issues that come associated with a straight pipe exhaust. One of the major ones is that neighbors reported them due to the excruciating sound that woke them up in the morning. This is something you must consider before buying a brand-new exhaust.
Another thing is that there is a chance that the sound is too loud for your liking. It is recommended to check a vehicle installed with one before you make the final decision.
If the sound is too much, you can consider other options such as exhaust tips or a muffler delete. To remind you, the latter is illegal.
Time To Install A Straight Pipe Exhaust Kit
Ok, so you considered everything, and now you want to take the time to get a brand-new straight pipe exhaust kit installed. If the person installing it has the proper experience, you should be good to go in a maximum of four hours.
As the job requires welding and has other complicated steps, it is best to get it done by a mechanic rather than yourself. There is a high probability that you will mess things up.
You don’t want your $1000 exhaust to go to waste. You should hire a mechanic that has enough experience in this arena. This way, you won’t have to worry about something going wrong.
This time frame does not apply to all vehicles. If you have one that already has had many modifications made, then you may have to wait considerably more. Regardless, this wait time is worth it.
Cost Of Getting A Straight Pipe Exhaust
I did state in the introduction that a straight pipe exhaust will cost you anywhere from $1000 to $1500. The difference is because there may be a difference in parts and their prices.
It is normal for the installation to exceed this range, depending on the vehicle and the mechanic you choose to get the job done for you. It is recommended not to go for the cheap options as this is a once-in-a-lifetime upgrade.
Installing The Exhaust At Home
I understand if you won’t save a few hundred dollars by installing the exhaust kit all by yourself. Although it is possible, the chances of failure are much higher than you would anticipate.
The job requires many tools, which may or may not be present with you. Plus, you need a good guide and a tutorial to walk you through the process. As a straight pipe exhaust differs from a normal one, the installation process is also not the same.
Almost every single step in the process is a tedious one. You have to make sure that you are up for the job. It is recommended that you see at least a few YouTube videos to ensure that you are up for the challenge.
The most difficult task is the welding one. You need to make sure that it is done precisely. A leak can damage the engine and cause other issues which you may not have expected. Again, I recommend that you hire a professional for the job.
Follow this video if you would like to learn how to do it at home:
Making My Exhaust Loud Legally
So, you made a rational decision and chose not to buy and install a straight pipe exhaust. I would say that is an excellent decision.
There is a very high chance of getting into trouble with the authorities if you get one. Regardless, there are some ways to get the sound you want and not worry about the law.
Let’s list some of those:
- Get an aftermarket exhaust
- Get a Catback exhaust
- Use performance exhaust tips
- Get new headers
- Upgrade the muffler
- Install a cold air intake
All of the above options are guaranteed to improve the sound of your engine. Although a straight pipe exhaust is illegal, the other two types are not. They have mufflers and catalytic converters that help in improving the sound.
If you have decided against changing the exhaust, then the only thing you can do is get some new supporting accessories such as exhaust tips and headers.
They will not help in the horsepower but will give you a decent increase in the sound. Plus, you will not start sweating when an officer stops you!
For those who clicked on this article and did not return immediately, I can guarantee that you were not expecting this much information related to a simple question, how much does it cost to straight pipe a car? Although I have mentioned this more than once, the cost will be around the $1250 mark.
A straight pipe exhaust is an expensive piece of equipment, but getting one will allow you to experience a night and day difference. The horsepower, the torque, and the sound will all be noticeably improved.
What I can guarantee is that you won’t regret spending your hard-earned money. You do need to make sure that getting the exhaust is legal in your country. At least in the USA, it is strictly forbidden to get something like this installed.