There are many good reasons why you should replace torn or worn-out exhaust insulators. First, driving with compromised insulators will put unnecessary load on the exhaust manifold studs. Second, having torn exhaust insulators could lead to the driveshaft grinding against the exhaust system, causing excessive vibrations and inoperable damage to the car's drivetrain. And finally, replacing exhaust insulators is quite easy. All you need are a couple of simple tools and a few hours of your time to get the job done.
Difficulty level: Easy to Moderate
- Jack and jack stands
- Ratchet and socket set
- Crescent wrench (optional)
Step 1: Jack up the car and support it with jack stands. Make sure it is stable enough to withstand a bit of shaking.
Step 2: Unbolt the exhaust from the catalytic converters. In some car models this not be necessary in order to remove the exhaust insulators, but unbolting the exhaust may help make the process easier.
Step 3: Locate the black exhaust insulators. Simply unhook the insulators from their mounting and pull it out. However, if the insulators are quite warped or are tight on the exhaust, spray some silicone lubricant or engine oil to help slide them off. You can also use a flat-head screwdriver to pry off particularly stubborn insulators.
Step 4: Once all the exhaust insulators have been removed, you can now install the new ones. Holding the exhaust in one hand, slip the muffler mount into the insulator. You may want to ask someone to help you hold the muffler in place while you attach it to the insulator.
Tip: If the exhaust insulator has a sizably large hole in the center, you can use a crescent wrench to help you mount the exhaust onto the insulator. Slide the handle through the insulator and put the hole of the wrench on the exhaust mount. Now carefully slide the insulator over the mount to install both the exhaust and the exhaust insulator in one go.