How To Make Your Exhaust Sound Louder

How can I make and improve my car sound louder? Learn my DIY guide

A common agreement of all vehicle enthusiasts is that the louder a car sounds, the better the driving experience is.

If you have a beefy engine under the hood, you may want a loud sound to accompany the drive. It not only makes you feel better, but it also tells the people around you that you are rocking a beast under the hood.

That is great, but now the question arises, how to make your exhaust loud?

The best way to do this is by getting a brand new exhaust system. Although it will cost you a lot, the upgrade is definitely worth it. You can even expect improved horsepower with this upgrade.

Now, calm down! This whole article has been designed to cover this topic. So, we will slowly cover all the bits and pieces you may want to know.

The Function Of The Exhaust System

There may be some of you readers who don’t know the function of an exhaust system. The exhaust system has been designed to process the toxic emissions of the engine.

It does not only keep the hydrocarbons away from the vehicle, but it also breaks them down into less harmful gases. This is great for reducing emissions.

Normally, exhaust systems are designed to be as quiet as possible. The exhaust is designed to be silent if you buy any vehicle, except for a racing one. But users, like you readers, need some sound.

I promise you that by the end of this article, you will be aware of plenty of ways to improve the sound of your engine.

7 Ways To Make Your Exhaust Car Louder

You know what; we will get right into it. There are seven possible ways you can get a better sound from your engine. Let’s talk about all of them, and if needed, I will also be discussing their pros and cons.

1. Aftermarket Exhaust

The first thing that crosses people’s minds when they think about increasing the sound of their engine is to get a new exhaust system.

I will not wait till the end of the article to tell you that a new exhaust will give you an unparalleled experience compared to the other eight options I will be detailing below.

Aftermarket exhausts have been designed for all sorts of purposes. They can be quieter or substantially louder. Of course, we will be talking about the latter in today’s article. Exhausts that have been designed to emit as much sound as possible are called performance exhausts.

They are great at their jobs and provide excellent airflow. They allow the engine to breathe more openly. This is possible due to the quick removal of all the emissions that build-up due to the various processes.

You could also go for a Catback exhaust, which is the number one choice for most people. When you check the market, you will notice many options out there.

If you are confused or cannot select, then the best one will be a catback one. It is not only great at improving airflow but looks awesome, thanks to the stainless-steel build.

2. Get An Exhaust Tip

If you have done some research, you may know that a new exhaust system is quite expensive. It may or may not be out of your budget.

Regardless, any sane person would like to save as much money as possible. Another great alternative to buying a new exhaust is an exhaust tip.

Many people think that getting an exhaust tip is a mere cosmetic upgrade. If you are not aware, an exhaust tip is the part of the system that sticks out of the back. They look like two tubes coming from beneath the engine. Surely, you would not have missed it.

Let me ask you a question. If the new tip has a larger radius or more airways, will it improve the emission expulsion or not? I think the vote here is unanimous.

Regardless, a new exhaust tip will not only cost you a fraction of a whole exhaust system; you may even experience a slight horsepower upgrade.

This alone tells you how much restrictive a factory exhaust is. Plus, the sound of the engine will also be better. The difference will not be night and day, but it will be noticeable.

3. Get New Headers

If you are looking for a way to improve the sound of your engine while saving a trip to the mechanic, I have got just the thing for you. Instead of being a full-on upgrade, this one is an accessory for the exhaust system. It bolts onto the exhaust system and makes removing the gases a much easier job.

Again, there are skeptics out there that do not believe that new headers can make a difference. I am here to tell you otherwise. Depending on the header you choose, the air expulsion rate will change dramatically. The higher the rate: the louder the sound.

A new header may be very cheap, or the price may skyrocket. It all depends on how much of a sound boost you want from it.

4. How To Get An Aggressive Sound

Any engine can be made louder; it may have become clear until this article. But what some people are looking for is that aggressive sound you only get in high-end vehicles. I have some good news for you.

You may or may not have heard of a muffler. It is a small box that is underneath the car. As expected by its name, a muffler is designed to compress as much sound as possible.

You might be thinking that removing a muffler may be enough, but no, you may need to get another one.

Fortunately, some mufflers do the exact opposite of what they are supposed to do. They have been designed to let out as much sound as possible. Now, there are many types of mufflers you can buy in the market.

Different products are under different categories, such as chambered mufflers and turbo ones. But what I will recommend is a straight muffler.

As the name suggests, the muffler has been designed to be in a straight line. It boosts the sound and makes it more aggressive than ever.

A muffler, unlike the previous two, is not designed to boost the horsepower of the engine. You may notice a slight increase, but the chances of that happening are quite low.

5. Remove The Muffler Altogether

Things are getting pretty interesting over here. People asked the question, what if the muffler was removed entirely. Of course, thousands of users did exactly that.

As I stated above, a muffler has been designed to suppress the sound of an engine. Removing it will allow the engine to get its sound out, unfiltered.

You might think that it’s all well and good. But unfortunately, removing a muffler is against the law.

I am not aware of other countries, but in the USA, a vehicle needs to have at least one muffler if you want to drive it on the road. If it doesn’t, then you risk getting caught.

And many of you may already agree, nobody wants to pay the fines. You need to visit Google or a traffic centre to confirm if what you want to do is illegal or not.

6. Install A Heavy-Duty Turbo Charger

Are you looking to boost the sound of your engine to the max volume? You will love this option then. A turbocharger is an aftermarket upgrade that will increase the performance, engine efficiency and, most importantly, the sound guaranteed.

Before you start searching, a turbocharger does cost a lot. It works, and there is not even a single percent chance of you not getting the sound you want. But, honestly, I don’t think that it is worth it.

What they do is that they allow more air into the combustion chamber. By doing this, the engine will not only have a complete combustion process but there will also be a lot of air to remove.

If you have the money and the motivation, then I suggest that you go for a turbocharger. If you pair it with a performance exhaust, you will surely be waking up the neighbours every morning when you leave and when you return at night.

7. Get A New Air Intake

So, you don’t want to modify the exhaust system but don’t have the budget for a turbocharger. I think getting a new air intake is the only way you can go.

Many of you may know the function of a cold air intake. It has been designed to take in as much cold air as possible. As cold air is dense, it has more oxygen when compared to warm air.

If you have done research prior to reading this article, then you may already have come across the name of a cold air intake. The thing is that the factory intake is bad.

In terms of performance, it barely checks the boxes. Some stock intakes don’t even allow for a turbocharger installation. So, the best way to go is to get a new intake altogether.

As the part increases the air intake of the engine, it will definitely boost the horsepower. The complete combustion process means that you will be generating more power while consuming less fuel.

Plus, if you are part of an enthusiast group, popping open the hood will really make them all shake their heads in awe.

Just to clarify, you need to get a cold air intake that has an open filter element. Those are the ones that get loud and help the engine with horsepower gains.

Sound Of A Bad Exhaust

There may be some of you reading this article whose exhausts are failing. You may be seeing this as an opportunity of getting an upgrade to a louder one too. Before you go ahead and order a new one, it is advised to check for some symptoms.

The common symptoms of an exhaust failure are:

  • Hissing sounds coming from the engine.
  • Engine producing a knocking sound.

This indicates a leak that may need to be fixed as soon as possible.

Although the sound is easily noticeable, it may be more prominent when accelerating and even cold starting the vehicle. So, if you are in doubt, these are the best times to check for any sounds emitted from the exhaust system.


Q1. Is Making The Exhaust Louder Illegal?

I have waited for the entire article in order to answer this question. If you try to modify the muffler of your vehicle, then that is illegal. In layman terms, tampering or removing the muffler may get you into some serious trouble with the authorities.

The reason for that is, exhaust modification can cause an exhaust leak. If you don’t know, these leaks are quite dangerous. They can happen spontaneously, and you risk yourself and the people and the vehicles around you.

Q2. Can A Loud Exhaust Get Me Pulled Over?

Yes, that is possible. If an officer in blue has a doubt that the exhaust is too loud, then he can stop you. An officer can stop you if he or she thinks that:

  • The exhaust is too loud.
  • If there are too much emissions.

In case of emissions, you need to buy one that controls the release of gases.

I will tell you of the toughest law there is, which is implemented in the state of California. If the exhaust creates a sound that is louder than 95 decibels, then you may be looking at some legal troubles. You should confirm with the exhaust manufacturer about the validity of the product in the state you live in.


If you have been wondering about how to make your exhaust loud, then this article will most definitely have eased some of your curiosity.

Although there are many ways a person can choose to increase the sound of the engine, my personal recommendation is to go for a brand-new exhaust.

Although it will cost a lot, it is still cheaper than a turbocharger. Plus, you will also not have to worry about breaking any laws because any and all mainstream companies make sure to make their products so that they stay under legal limits.

Other than that, I hope that this article may have helped you in finalizing your decision on how to improve the sound of your engine.


Written by Kane Dan

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