A car’s exhaust system works in multiple ways and carries out different crucial tasks for a car’s performance and safety. Its primary purpose is to keep all the harmful exhaust gases (carbon dioxide) from being released into the environment.

By combusting the used up gases in its internal chamber, it releases safer gases into the surrounding air. Most cars come with an exhaust system which goes a long way without incurring any costs.

However, these can become damaged or clogged over time and may need to be replaced.

A new exhaust system can cost you anywhere from $300 to $1200. For $300, you can expect to get a decent and durable exhaust system with a perfectly functional exhaust tip and muffler.

What is Included in an Exhaust System?

To get a clearer idea of exactly what costs you might incur, knowing about the different components of an exhaust system can be helpful. The average exhaust system comes with:

A Muffler!

This is the noise-reducing part attaching to the exhaust. It helps lower the noise created by each part of the engine and wheels. A high-quality and durable muffler can cost anywhere from $75 to $300, depending on its build material, thickness, and style.

An Exhaust Tip

This is the airway where the combusted gases leave the exhaust system. These can come in different shapes and styles and include single or dual exhaust tips.

Depending on these factors and the build material, these can cost as low as $15 or $150 for the sporty, higher-quality ones. However, you do not need to account for these costs separately, as exhaust tips usually come pre-installed with the exhaust system purchases.

Types of Exhaust Systems

  • Cat-Back Exhaust Systems

These are more performance-oriented and feature a wider airflow for quicker movement of the exhaust gases. These have a less restricted airflow and can provide slightly more horsepower compared to traditional.

Within this type, you can choose from the single exhaust, dual exhaust, or dual exit exhaust systems, with the single exhaust costing the least.

  • Axle-Back Exhaust Systems

These are the traditional exhaust systems and do not have any performance-boosting qualities. Typically, they have a narrower airflow and cost less than cat-back systems.

Build Materials

Other than the price of each component and the type of exhaust, the materials used can significantly determine the cost of an exhaust system.

Stainless steel is a standard and long-lasting build that comes with exhaust systems. Because of their resistance to bending and dents, they are pricier than other materials.

An alternative is galvanized aluminum, which offers similar durability compared to stainless steel. While costly, the stainless steel build can be a safer option for performance and long-term use.

Exhaust tips are more commonly produced with stainless steel, titanium, or chrome. Compared to steel, chrome and titanium are cheaper alternatives but do not carry similar resistance to rust and corrosion.

Cost of Installing an Exhaust System

Installing an exhaust system is a relatively quick and straightforward process. With the proper knowledge and some beginner tools, you can DIY the entire installation process.

Moreover, some dealerships allow you to outsource the complete process to them without any charges. However, they require you to buy the original exhaust system as recommended by the manufacturer.

If you want to go with the third option and have it installed by a mechanic, you can expect to pay between $100 to $150. The process should not take more than 2 hours as it simply requires a quick plug-in.

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