How to Clean Exhaust Tips Like a Pro in 6 Easy Ways!

Does exhaust soot becomes an irritant to the overall look of your car that you want it to be removed right away? Failure to maintain the exhaust tips can lead to ugly consequences like carbon build up and corrosion.

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You don’t want your car to look shiny except on the rear end right? Here, I will show you how to clean exhaust tips with very easy steps. You don’t even need an expert to help you get through with that nasty soot lurking at the rear end of your ride!


Why Cleaning Your Ride’s Rear End is Important

Often times, the exhaust tips are easily taken for granted because most of us are too focused on the outer shell. I’m also guilty with this because when I got my first car, I only cared so much about the paint and the windows that even a small scratch already freaks me out!

Remember, exhaust tips contribute to the complete charm of your ride even if it’s rarely ever noticed. If not well maintained, over time exhaust soot will begin to build in and removing it will become a challenge.

In general, you need to clean the exhaust tips for the following reasons:

  • Avoid corrosion and damage to the tips
  • Prevent black carbon build up
  • Make your exhaust tips last longer
  • Keep your car looking good as new

What is Exhaust Soot?

Exhaust soot is a result of unburnt fuel from the moment your engine started working. You would usually notice it in a form of black carbon build up within the exhaust tips.

Aside from the soot, your car’s rear end is constantly exposed to dirt and varying environment temperatures (excessive heat, snow, salt, you name it) which lead to corrosion. In a nutshell, both the exhaust soot and corrosion are undesirable.


Exhaust Tips Can Give You Warnings about Your Engine

Aside from the added looks, exhaust tips can also help you tell the health of your vehicle. For example, if you see white smoke when starting your car even after it has been warmed up, then something must be wrong that needs your immediate attention.

There are many types of smokes you should watch for (which I will not discuss in this post), varying from white to black smoke. Make sure to watch out the smoke coming out from your exhaust tips from time to time as these can give you warnings about your car’s condition.


Easy Steps to Clean Exhaust Tips

Cleaning your exhaust tips can be challenging sometimes especially if it has not been cleaned for a very long time. The good news is that you can get it's shine back using the right cleaning products and methods.

What You Will Need:

  • Protective Gloves
  • Cleaning brushes
  • Wheel soap
  • #0000 Steel wool
  • Microfiber towel
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Wheel protectant
  • Metal polish
  • Pressure Washer

#1. Protective Gloves

Protective gloves is used to keep your hands free from all the dirt and carbon you are going to get from the exhaust tips.


#2. Cleaning Brushes

Via amazon.com

Cleaning brushes is used for scrubbing tough grime on the exhaust surface and hard to reach areas.


#3. Wheel Soap

Via amazon.com

Wheel soap is a cleaning solution used to remove brake dust and road grime from your exhaust tips and wheels.


#4. 0000 Steel Wool

Via amazon.com

#000 Steel wool is an important tool for removing built up dirt and polishing your tips.


#5. Microfiber towel

Microfiber towel is a piece of cloth you utilized to wipe away smudges and polish your tips after the washing routine.


#6. All-purpose Cleaner

Via amazon.com

The all-purpose cleaner is an important cleaning solution to remove grime and stains on any surface of your car.

I personally recommend Chemical Guys All Purpose Super Cleaner as a cleaning agent because it is good at removing contaminants and grime. The concentrated soap is safe to use for any types of exhaust tips.

Take note that there are numerous brands of cleaning agents available in the market today. You may also do your own research on which products you can use to clean and maintain the exhaust tips of your car.


#7. Wheel Protectant

Wheel protectant is utilized to protect your exhaust tips from corrosion, dust and road grime.


#8. Metal Polish

Via amazon.com

Metal polish is utilized to remove tarnish and rusts and provides a protective coating to your tips, making your next cleaning routine easier. This product protects your car’s tips from rust and gives it an extra shine.


#9. Pressure Washer

Via amazon.com

The pressure washer is a helpful cleaning accessory to effectively remove tough stains and dirt during rinsing. You can also find it helpful in washing the surface of your car.

After gathering the materials, make sure that you park your vehicle on a safe area. Do not forget to wear protective gloves and eye protection before you start the process below:


Step by Step Instruction

  • Step 1
  • Step 2
  • Step 3
  • Step 4
  • Step 5
  • Step 6

Rinse Your Exhaust Tips Using a Pressure Washer


  • Turn on your pressure washer
  • Begin to squeeze the spray wand to let the water flow out of its nozzle.
  • Spray water on the exhaust tips, while avoiding the exhaust chamber.
  • Tip: Make sure that you set it at a moderate pressure setting (500 – 800 dpi).

All Done!

Exhaust tips are often taken for granted until we start seeing obvious problems. If not well maintained, they can be loaded with dirt and soot which is undesirable. There are many ways on how to clean exhaust tips effectively and make them look almost brand new.

Have you found this post enjoyable and helpful? I sure hope so! Please don’t forget to share this article to your friends or anyone you think who needs advices on how to clean exhaust tips.

If you have similar experiences, questions or suggestions, I would love to hear it from you through the comments section below. Enjoy!

About the Author Alice Brown

I am just a car girl. Simply interested in the automotive and vehicular world. I started out as an apprentice mechanic working at my father’s garage. I'm hoping my two cents will help you fix a blinking light on the dashboard or that cranking noise that you don’t seem to know where it is coming from.

1 comment
Important Tips to Make Your Car’s Exhaust Sound Louder - CAR BLOG MALAYSIA says May 8, 2017

[…] The increased volume of the gasses will enable the gasses to be ported from the system with a lot of ease. The greater pipe diameter and throughput will create a greater sound in the exhaust system. But do not increase the size of exhaust pipes beyond acceptable measures as this will differ depending on the vehicle’s engine, torque, and horsepower. It’s also important to know how to clean exhaust tips. […]

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