The main reason why most car owners want to straight pipe their cars is that it reduces the backpressure created by the muffler and catalytic converter. But how much does it cost to straight pipe a car? Is it affordable?
If you’re going to take professional help to straight pipe your car, it will cost somewhere between $1200-$1500. A complete kit of a straight pipe exhaust costs $300-$700 and the labor cost should be a few hundred dollars.
However, this is not the whole story. There are different factors that affect the overall costs, and there are things you should know before straight-piping a car. Let’s go through the piece to know all the details.
How Much Does It Cost To Straight Pipe A Car?
The fact is, how much to straight pipe a car cost depends on whether you’re getting any professional help, where you do live, what size straight pipe your car need, and a few more factors like these.
If you’d like to take it as a DIY project, there’s no need for any labour costs. So, you can save a few hundred dollars from there.
You’ll get a complete straight pipe exhaust kit for $300-$700 and the DIY process is also easy. We’ll discuss the steps so pin it for later.
Also, when you ask ‘how much is it to straight pipe a car?’ The answer varies from different brands. It’s because the cars and their exhaust systems are manufactured differently. You’ll get some ideas from the table below.
|Different Brands of Cars||Cost of The Straight Pipe Exhaust Kit||Labor Cost|
|Dodge Challenger||Around $800||Around $200|
|BMW||Around $1,000||Around $100|
Factors Affecting The Straight Pipe Exhaust Cost
As we’ve been saying from the beginning, the answer to ‘how much does it cost to straight pipe your car?’ depends on several factors. Below are the details.
Your Car Model
The type or model of your car matters because it determines which size of straight exhaust pipe you need to purchase, how much the labour cost can be, and how much potential loss your vehicle can face from straight piping.
More expensive car models like BMW will require more expensive and specialized parts or increased labour costs for the piping process. So, the ultimate cost can be higher compared to other models.
Diameter of The Pipe
The length and width of the exhaust pipes also affect how much does straight pipe cost. The longer and wider pipes require higher costs because more labour and materials will be required in such cases.
Moreover, the cost can vary according to the thickness of the pipes. The thicker pipes will increase the cost, as usual. Using thicker pipes like 12-gauge steel will be more durable and will cost higher as well.
If you ask for an expert recommendation, 16-gauge steel is suggested for the highest durability.
Not all cars are designed for straight-pipe exhaust systems. So, if you’d like to install it in such a vehicle, you need to purchase additional parts to make them fit. For the straight pipe installation cost, the overall cost will increase.
Although it’s optional because you’re free from labour charges if you straight pipe your car by yourself.
Getting help from experts will increase the cost and the amount can vary according to the level of skill and experience of the professionals. Labour costs can also change according to where you live.
Apart from these, there are some other factors that also matter to straight pipe a car. For example, the quality of the metal used for the exhaust system, how many hours it takes to install the system, the year of release of your car, and so on.
Is The Pipe Straightening Cost Same Everywhere?
In simple and easy answer, no. The cost for straight pipe exhaust is not the same in every area. Because besides the products and tools’ price, the wages typically reflect regional differences in experience and skill levels.
So don’t be surprised if contractors located near big metropolitan areas charge more than those located further away from major population centres.
In the same way, the cost of straight piping a car in every country will not be the same because the currency value is different and the pipe and other equipment price is also different. So, the straight piping cost will not be the same everywhere.
Is It Worth It To Straight Pipe A Car?
Straight piping a car levels up the engine performance but the performance boost isn’t that significant. Plus, you have to ensure that the potential benefits are higher than your initial investment to claim that it’s worthy.
It can happen because the cost will eventually increase if you don’t install it in the right way. Moreover, you can have losses in resale because straight piping a car is illegal in many states.
Straight-pipe exhaust systems make vehicles noisy as well. If you think these aren’t significant issues for you, then yes, straight piping your car will be worth it.
Benefits of A Straight Pipe Exhaust
Installing a straight pipe exhaust, of course, brings some benefits to your vehicle. Below are the details about it.
Once you remove the muffler and catalytic converter before straight piping your car, the amount of back pressure in your engine will be reduced. The engine will eventually generate more torque and increase horsepower by 2%-4%.
Although it can add 0-10 horsepower to a standard car, note that the amount of additional torque HP will also depend on the model of your car and the modifications you’ve made.
If the engine is already powerful, you can add a lot of horsepower by installing a straight pipe exhaust.
You can easily remove 3-16 lbs of weight per catalytic converter and around 40 lbs for the muffler. It will help your car become lighter and faster than before.
Enhanced Sound and Aesthetics
If you like the sporty sound of a high-performance car and a louder and more aggressive exhaust note, you’ll love the installation of a straight pipe exhaust in your car.
It also will level up the appearance of your car if you attend racing games.
What Are The Drawbacks of A Straight Pipe Exhaust?
There are some negative impacts of a straight pipe exhaust that make them less wanted by some car owners. Here are the details.
The biggest impact a straight pipe exhaust can have is on the resale value of your car. As we’ve said earlier, straight exhaust arrangement is illegal in many states, so you should utilize the standard exhaust system if you have any plan to sell your car in the near future.
Straight piping a car leads your car to emit more greenhouse gasses. It’s because the straight pipe removes all necessary components that catch the pollutants your car produces.
Take the catalytic converter as an example; it transforms around 90% of the emission into steam (less harmful gas). So, yes, you’re increasing the risk of excessive emissions by installing a straight pipe exhaust.
Since the muffler reduces the loud noise your engine produces and you’re removing the muffler while installing a straight pipe exhaust, you’ll end up with a lot more noise from the car.
Although some cars sound really great after being straight-piped, some cars produce weak and airy sounds.
If you don’t want to be the one who guns their turbo engine at 1 AM around your neighborhood, stay away from the straight pipe exhausts.
Does Straight Pipe Waste More Gas?
There is a lot of opinion about ‘does a straight pipe waste more gas?’, and this often leads to people making uninformed decisions. Many car owners believe that straight pipes waste more gas than traditional exhaust systems, and that is actually true.
The main problem that the straight pipe creates is interrupting the natural exhaustion and airflow of the car. This pipe also increases turbulence in the engine bay. By doing these two things, it increases gas wastage. So, making the exhaust pipe straight is not a good option to make your car gas efficient.
Is It Illegal to Straight Pipe A Car In the USA?
So, is it legal to straight pipe your car? No, most states of the USA prohibited the use of straight pipe exhaust because of the excessive noise, emissions, and smoke.
The table contains information regarding which states of the USA allow a straight pipe exhaust. Let’s have a look.
|Different States of the USA||Is Straight Pipe Exhaust Legal or Illegal?|
|Michigan||Legal but you must be careful about the sound|
How to Straight Pipe A Car Yourself?
Straight pipe your car yourself will help you save money. But be careful when you follow each step, you shouldn’t add any damage that might cost you even more money to repair.
Things You’ll Need
- Measuring tape
- Straight pipe kit
- Straight blasted file
- Adjustable wrench
- Pipe clamps
Once you gather all the necessary things, follow the steps below.
Step 1: Set Up The Pipe Length
First off, you need to use a measuring tape to set up the pipe length.
Use the measuring tape to determine the distance between the outlet of the catalytic converter and the inlet of the muffler. Make sure there are 6 inches of extra length for the joint fittings.
Step 2: Cut The Pipe
Now, you need to mark the length of the pipe you’re going to cut. Use a pencil for this job and hold the pipe using the pipe vice. Take the hacksaw to cut the mandrel bend sections and take the Straight Blasted File so you can remove the cutting burr.
Step 3: Tighten The Clamps
To tighten the clamps, you need to align the clamps properly first. For this, make sure you’ve parked the car on leveled ground. Make sure all parts including the catalytic converter are aligned before you weld them together.
After you weld them together, you should treat the new pipes using heath-resistant paint (it may seem a bit of a lot task) if they’re not stainless steel or chrome.
Step 4: Test The Installation
The final step is to test your installation. Start the engine and see whether there’s any problem or leak. If you find something wrong, it’ll be best to bring your car to a professional mechanic this time.
Like any other component installation on a car, straight pipe cost also varies on many things including pipe quality, your location, car model, and mechanic experience. So, it is hard to answer specifically. But the average cost is maybe $1000. But remember the variety also. Hope to drive better in the future. Thanks for reading from us.