The 5 Easy Steps To Weld Exhaust Pipe – With Safety Tips

Are you looking for cheap ways to get your vehicle’s exhaust pipe welded? I bet you are. Why else would you be here anyway? Back in my college days, I found myself in the same position as you.

I received only so much pocket money that it paid for basic necessities such as food and clothing. Spending hundreds of dollars on welding was beyond my imagination, so I learned how to weld my own exhaust pipe.

Pinching for the money and making ends meet teaches you some tough but worthy lessons and skills in life. I regard my excellent welding skills as that.

My good friend Ross and I learned how to do it from his dad, and through years of practice, I can now proudly stand on a pedestal and tell everybody that I know how to get my work done.

Welding the exhaust pipe is pretty easy but technical, so you need to follow all the necessary steps besides taking care of all the preventive measures.

Remember, practice makes a man perfect. Thus the more you practice, the better you get at it. So, without wasting your time, let us dig into the details.

How To Weld Exhaust Pipe

Welding an exhaust pipe becomes relatively easy if you have the right tools. And the tools you need depend on the type of welding you will opt for. It can be either stick welding, TIG welding, or MIG welding, whichever you are comfortable with.

But the technique of welding remains the same. Ensure you carefully go through each step to achieve optimum results with no injuries because your safety comes first.

Step # 1: Cutting The Exhaust Tube

Cutting the exhaust tube is the most critical step in welding because the neater the cut, the better the result. So you will first have to measure and mark the pipe precisely where you want to cut because if you don’t do it, the pipe ends won’t fit on each other.

After marking the pipe, you proceed to cut the pipe. However, it is imperative to take all preventive measures, such as wearing protective gear ( goggles, gloves, face shields, thick bottoms, etc.) before you proceed.

For cutting purposes, you can use a chain pipe cutter or a hacksaw depending upon your ability to pay because a chain pipe cutter is a lot more expensive and gives a more straight cut than a hacksaw.

Remember, you must strive to make a straight cut if you want it to look neat and professional. Once you cut the exhaust pipe, you can use a grinder or 200-grit sandpaper to smoothen the edges and clear away any dirt that may have accumulated there.

Step # 2: Correctly Setting The Welding Machine

You must set the welder’s set correctly to get the best results. The thickness of an exhaust pipe is around 1/16 inch, so I suggest you use the lower heat to avoid burn-through.

The higher the welding temperature, the fast you have to perform the welding, meaning potential chances of mess. For that reason keeping the temperature down will give you more time to weld precisely without breaks.

Step # 3: Clamp The Pipe Ends Together

Before you proceed to weld the pipe ends together, it is essential that you clamp them together through some means because if you don’t, you will have to hold the pieces together with your hands.

This can cause significant injuries, and your hands might get burnt. And you don’t want to go through all that unnecessary pain when you can avoid it altogether.

steel exhaust pipe clamped

All you need to do is use the most inexpensive and widely available C-clamps. These clamps hold the pipe ends tightly and takes up the welding machine’s extreme heat without damage. However, fitting the clamps on the pipe ends can prove to be a very frustrating job.

You will have to make all the adjustments by hand until the pipe ends look neat and precise before you jump to the central welding part.

Step # 4: Take Small Baby Steps

Instead of welding the whole thing right away, you are advised to take your time by spot welding through the ends. This is only to ensure that the pipes don’t disengage or bend; if they do, you can bend them back in place before proceeding further. In this way, you will get a very neatly welded exhaust pipe.

Another reason you should make spot welds, in the beginning is that the high heat produced from the welding machine may warp the material, but the spot welds warm up the metal, thus reducing the risk of damage.

Besides, it helps prevent gaps from forming in the pipe as you weld it. You can use any exhaust pipe welder we have reviewed.

Step # 5: Go All In

Once you are done with spot welding, the next thing you need to do is fill in any gaps left from the previous step. You will have to weld all around the jointed ends on top of the spot welds.

This helps prevent any leakages which may have disastrous impacts. Besides, it gives a nice finished look to the exhaust pipe, which stays in place for a long time.

Safety Measures To Weld Exhaust Pipe

I suggest you wear protective gear such as a helmet or lens, goggles, and welding safety clothes as you do while performing any other welding operation. Wear protective gear that does not hinder your movement when welding.

1: Eliminate Any Grease or Oil

Before welding, make sure to clean any oil or grease residue to avoid incidents like fire. Often, high-temperature welding arcs make contact with the oil residues on the floor, escalating a massive fire.

2: Cut the Battery Connection

When welding, you don’t have control over the welding arcs. Any of the arcs could damage the entire car computer. So, pull off the battery cables to avoid the connection between stray welding arcs and car electrical wiring.

3: Cover Up the Fuel Tank

First, try to remove the exhaust pipe and weld it at a location away from the fuel tank. However, if it’s impossible to remove, consider covering the gas tanks with a welding blanket.

4: Fume Extractor

Metal produces toxic fumes when welding, and accidentally Inhaling such fumes could pose serious health threats.

To prevent fume from getting into you, try to weld in a well-ventilated place and use a fume extractor to avoid serious health problems.

However, if a fumes extractor is heavy on your pocket, consider buying one or two small fans as using these fans correctly blows away from your face.

What Equipment to Use For Welding Exhaust Pipe?

Achieving the best results is only possible when you carry out the welding task using the right welding gears.

1: Protective Gears

Safety comes first. So always wear a welding helmet to protect your eyes, heat resistance welding gloves, and a body suit to save yourself from welding arcs.

Also, consider buying a welding jacket as it is handy in many situations.

2: Choosing the Welding Process

You can weld an exhaust pipe with a TIG welder also, But I don’t suggest that as it’s a bit costly and also requires to be performed by a professional welder.

So I suggest you opt for the MIG welder, as it’s less expensive and can be performed by a beginner welder. However, when buying a MIG welder, consider the factors such as duty cycle, UI, Power, and the variety of metals its welds.

3: Angle Grinder & Clamps

You will require clamps to perfect the position of the two exhaust pipes before welding. Secondly, you need an angle grinder tool that comes in handy in many situations. Also, it helps to remove any extra material to make the welding visually appealing.

Ways To Join Exhaust Pipe Without Welding

FAQs

Is it hard to weld the exhaust pipe?

Welding an exhaust pipe can be tricky, but you can take specific steps to ensure it doesn’t seem too difficult. The first one is practice. The more you experience and practice welding the exhaust pipe, the easier it becomes for you to do the job.

The second one is the type of welding you opt for. It is a collective opinion that TIG welding is the best for welding exhaust pipes, but MIG and stick welding can also be used.

How much does it cost to get an exhaust welded?

The cost to get an exhaust welded depends upon the type of welding and whether you are getting it welded by a professional welder or not. The cost also depends on the size of the exhaust pipe area that needs to be welded, i.e., the greater the area, the more the cost.

Besides, TIG welding is more expensive than MIG welding, and a professional and highly skilled welder will charge you higher than the ordinary one. But all in all, you should expect a welding bill of up to $500.

How long does welding an exhaust take?

Usually, it does not take more than twenty minutes to weld an exhaust pipe, but the time may vary with the type of welding you are using, plus the practice you have.

If you have a great skill set and a lot of practice to go with it, then you may finish welding the exhaust pipe in less than twenty minutes.

Besides, it also varies with the conditions in the exhaust. Most of the time, the conditions are less than ideal, so it will take longer than twenty minutes to weld it.

Conclusion

I hope I have given you all the knowledge you need to start welding your own exhaust pipe. Practice makes a man perfect, so the more you practice, the more you will be able to brush up on your skills.

I agree that adjusting and positioning the pipe ends is tricky, and you may get frustrated, but you will learn another crucial skill, “Learning to persevere.”

Just remember to take all the precautionary measures before you head on to the welding business. Better safe than sorry!

About Dave Walker

Dave Walker, a professional welder who has been welding from an early age. Now aims to help others by making them learning skills and finding them new opportunities. He has written for many welding blogs and helped many pursue their welding goals by helping them in choosing the best welding tools of the time.