As your car exhaust pipe cleaner comes out covered in that dark stuff, you’ll probably wonder what exactly you’re cleaning off your exhaust tips.
Combustion is simple on paper. But in your car, the fiery process that makes all those horsepower is much more in-depth. Air density (such as cold vs. hot days) and a nearly uncountable number of fueling factors play their part. But the key thing here is that fuel rarely gets wholly burned. The unburned stuff, as you’d expect, gets sent out through your exhaust tips. This slight amount of incomplete combustion takes the form of soot, which is a residue composed of the gasoline’s hydrocarbons.
In other words, “how to clean exhaust tips” can be looked at as “how to remove the byproduct of an engine’s fuel-burning complexities.” Avoiding the buildup is impossible unless you never drive the car or drive an electric vehicle (in which case, of course, you wouldn’t need this guide).
Now that you know what you’re cleaning and have all of the mandatory materials, you’re ready to begin getting dirty (and getting your tips clean). This is how to clean exhaust tips:1
It’s important to know everything about the condition of a used car before you buy it, particularly cars under $15K. You don’t want to spend a ton of time and energy planning and executing a cleanup or rebuild of a car that isn’t worth it. You also need to know about the materials the car is made from, how and where it’s been driven and stored over the years, and how often the owner has serviced said vehicle. Go through each point on our used car buying checklist before you go any further down the path towards a new vehicle.
Knowing how to clean exhaust tips at home starts with high-quality metal polish, wheel sealant, ultra-fine wire wool, and a wheel cleaner with a fallout remover. Aggressively scrub the tips with soap, water, and a rugged towel. Vigorously scrub the exhaust with your wheel cleaner and towel. Rub the wool on the exhaust tips. Polish them with metal polish, then use the sealant to lock in that shine.1
WD-40 is not the best way to clean exhaust tips. It’s essentially a temporary solution that’ll burn away with the heat of your exhaust and sometimes do more damage. The best answer to “how to clean exhaust tips” is a combination of soap, water, metal polish, wire wool, wheel sealant, a wheel cleaner with a fallout remover, and some elbow grease. Check out our guide for the full process.1
Exhaust tips naturally turn black over time due to incomplete combustion. It’s an inevitable part of any combustion engine. The gasoline rarely gets 100% burned up, and the remaining hydrocarbons are sent out the exhaust tips as soot. This carbon buildup is black-colored and sticks to the exhaust as you drive. Learning how to clean exhaust tips is easy, though, and can get your tailpipes shining like new again.
|Manual vs. Automatic Transmission
|Does Car AC Use Gas?
|How to Fix a Cracked Windshield
|How to Clean Spilled Coffee in Car
1This web page is not intended to replace this service that is to be performed at an official dealership. It is your sole responsibility for any injuries and damages incurred as a result of performing such actions contained in this webpage. Contact our dealership for complete details.
You don't have any saved vehicles!
Look for this link on your favorites:
Once you've saved some vehicles, you can view them here at any time.