You need to know all of your car repair options, especially when you are trying to conserve money. The best case scenario is being able to work with the materials you already have and avoid those staggering auto shop bills. However, you need to make sure what you’re trying to do is actually doable. You might not have heard of welding stainless steel exhaust pipe before. Not only is it possible, but this technique is rapidly rising in popularity.
Today, we’re going to tell you all about this repair method, its advantages and disadvantages, and how to go about it.
Why Weld an Exhaust Pipe?
People weld an exhaust pipe as a means of repairing the system. The most common reasons for it are to patch up leaks, cracks, and holes.
In addition, when done correctly, it can improve the system’s performance and appearance.
The most important questions when considering any unfamiliar repair technique include the following:
- Can I do it safely?
- How much time and effort will it take?
- Will the results hold or is it just a temporary solution?
The answers to each of these questions combined will determine its viability. MIG welding stainless steel has shown to yield great results, even being able to permanently seal the leak or crack if done correctly. Even better, the process can take as little as 20 minutes, depending on your experience level.
However, you need to be prepared for the difficulty of this project. If you have not done MIG welding with stainless steel before, you’ll need to research extensively and practice at least a few times before going for your big project.
As long as you take all precautions and warnings – which we will be discussing later – into consideration, you’ll see a dramatic change in your car’s quality very quickly.
Advantage Over Alternative Repairs
Insufficient repairs can be even worse than no repairs. A weak material will give out and can leave you with worse issues than what you started with.
Stainless steel is an extremely flexible and versatile metal to weld and is receptive to almost any welding style. It is also extremely durable, lasting longer and holding up to more damage than most metals.
Weld sealant is also easily affordable and accessible. You can have your car fixed today for very little cost.
While quick and effective, this technique has some shortcomings.
For one, stainless steel is one of the more easily distorted materials, so you’ll need to be extremely careful during the process.
There are also health concerns. Carcinogenic fumes can be produced by the steel, which can cause significant damage to the lungs and throat without proper precautions. Always have the proper face covering so you do not inhale toxic substances.
Also, make sure you have an organized and sterile environment. Clean any tools and materials you will be using thoroughly to lower the risk of infection. Make sure there are no scrap pieces in your work area or your welding machine that could damage your project.
These warnings are not to discourage you from the process completely. They are to help you avoid the common frustrations and hazards that can come with it.
Keeping your car up and running should not break your bank. Learning this technique can open the door to performance and endurance levels your exhaust system did not have before
However, you cannot go into the project blindly. You need to prepare the room you’re going to do it in, take health and safety precautions for yourself, and know exactly what you are doing.