How To Remove Exhaust Bolts Without Breaking Them


When your car is more than just a means of transportation, it can be a source of pride. If you are looking to get rid of some of that extra weight, however, then it is time to consider dumping them!

Removing extraneous parts makes your vehicle lighter, which helps preserve its balance and efficiency. Depending on what kind of engine your car has, there can be several types of bolts used for different functions.

Some clamps work by pressing onto an opening or hole in the part being attached to, making it difficult to remove later. Others use tension to hold it in place, requiring special tools to loosen up.

This article will focus on the first type of bolt, those that use spring pressure to maintain their grip. There are two main reasons why these bolts sometimes come off easily. First, they may become dry and flaky due to repeated usage. Second, heat can weaken the glue that holds them together. Both of these factors make them easier to pull away from. So, how do you fix a broken exhaust clamp? Read on to find out!

Article: How to Fix a Broken Clamp – The General Procedure

Repairing a broken clamp starts with identifying the part. You can either check under the hood or online to see if anyone else has this same clamp and information about it. Once identified, you can go into greater detail on how to properly install it.

Know the difference between heat and cold

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

The last thing you want is for your car to explode due to poor cooling. If possible, it’s better to pull over and cool down than try to remove the bolts by twisting or hammering them.

If you do need to hot-wire the vehicle, make sure to know the differences between heating and cooling engine parts. Heating up an exhaust component will not damage it, but redlining a cylinder head can cause cracks in the gaskets and seals.

Engine components such as pistons and valves are designed to withstand high temperatures, so leaving them alone is usually the best bet. However, if you do have to work on them, use the right tool for the job!

You don’t want to use a screwdriver on a temperature sensor, for example, or hit the metal part of the bolt with a wrench because both could start a fire. Use the correct tools for the job and avoid damaging the engine.

Use heat

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

There are several ways to remove old exhaust bolts. Some are easier than others depending on how tight your engine is coupled with the vehicle and what size bolt you are looking to pull out.

Here we will go over one of our most effective tips for removing old exhaust grommets or “bolts” as they are more commonly known. This tip does not require any special tools nor do we suggest using anything that could hurt yourself or damage the car further.

We will also show you some pictures to help illustrate this process better. Now, let’s get into it!

The basics…

First off, make sure there are no people around when you begin trying to work on your car. All sorts of things can happen if someone has to step in and save you while you are attempting to take apart your vehicle. Also, be sure to use adequate caution handling the vehicle after you have removed all of the parts.

Now, let’s talk about something important: heat. A lot of people try to use a hammer to smash their bolts out but that is definitely not the best way to do it. By adding heat, you will easily able to separate the metal from the gasket.

There are two main types of heat you can use to shatter these bolts-the flame from an oven burner and molten liquid such as oil.

Use cold

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

The best way to remove old rusted or frozen bolts is by using an easily accessible tool that does not require any special expertise!

There are many simple hand tools you can use to loosen clogged up car parts. Cold wrenches are one of the most versatile as they can be used either hot or cold. Hotwielding means applying heat to the bolt, while cold-swinging means working with the shaft instead of the head.

By passing a magnet through both ends of the wrench, you can pick up pieces of metal such as broken off screws or bent exhaust pipe fittings. You may also need this tool to take apart your vehicle later so it’s better to have some than none!

Never apply too much pressure when using a cold-handed tool like a screwdriver. Only push down hard enough to rotate the screw, do not force it out! This could break the screw or the part attached to it.

Use acetone

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

Acetone is an easy way to remove old exhaust bolts. You can either use spray-on acetone or liquid acetone to do this.

When using liquid form, make sure you mix it with a proper ratio of oil so it will not dry out.

You can also apply some grease to help the bolt stick onto the rod. Once both are dried, simply pull up on the clamp or handle and see how easily the pipe comes off!

This process works great for older pipes that have lost their shape due to heat expansion. If you need to replace them, search online for aftermarket replacement parts.

Use denatured alcohol

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

Denatured alcohol is a good source of chemical agents that can be used to remove stubborn corrosion or burnt-on residue. It works by breaking down metals, so it will not burn away too much metal like regular gasoline would.

Denaturant in denature alcohol comes from ethanol, which most people are already familiar with. You can usually find it in your local drugstore in products such as Liquid Plumber or Glade Cleaner. Just make sure you do not use longer than recommended because it may hurt your skin or leave a patchy white coat if you accidentally pour too much on something.

To use denaturant correctly, soak the offending part in the alcohol for at least five minutes before rubbing off the excess.

Use liquid wrench

If you are ever having trouble removing an exhaust or engine cover bolt, it is time to try using a tool that has been known to work. Liquid wrench was designed to do this very thing!

Liquid wrench works by containing abrasive particles in a fluid solution. When the acid and metal atoms of the bolts interact, they form a coating that helps dissolve the metal quickly. It also aids in forming a protective layer of zinc oxide which can help prevent corrosion.

This article will tell you how to use liquid wrench to remove vehicle engine covers and hot-rod style muffler pipes.

Use a blowtorch

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

The best way to remove old, rusty or stuck exhaust bolts is with a good quality torch. There are many brands that offer different levels of performance and features, so do some research and find one that works for you!

Some people say using a hand held plasma cutter is better than using a torch because it does not require any electricity to work, but I have never used one myself, so I can’t give too much advice about them.

Either type of torch will heat up the bolt until it melts down and pulls out, however, make sure you use the right size torch for your engine. A small torch may burn through quickly, but a large one may not melt all of the metal off the bolt in time.

Use a hammer

how to remove exhaust bolts without breaking them

For this technique, you will need a very strong hand held tool– a hammer! You can use any size of hammers depending on how many bolts there are and what gauge they are.

A softer bolt won’t break down completely so much gas is still expelled which could be harmful. A heavier duty hammer with more weight will smash through just enough to remove the head and then reattach it later.

To make sure everything goes well for you and your car, try doing this before working on anything else. Make sure that all loose parts have gone away first!

After removing as many nuts and bolts as possible using either one of these two techniques, wash and dry your car thoroughly and putty or glue in place of the removed part.

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