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Car repair advice needed


twjolson
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Since here at the reaper boards have an expert on any subject imaginable, I need some help with my car. I have holes in my exhaust, one of which is on a bend. I tried patching them with a bandage, and with hardening putty, but both failed. Now the car is just as loud as it's ever been. I can not afford to have the exhaust replaced or repaired, so I need a cheap fix that actually lasts. The previous fixes failed in a week at most. I was thinking of doing the putty again, but mixing it with some JB Weld (if it will mix), or just using JB Weld straight, and use a screen or something to make it stick rather then sink into the hole

 

Can anyone help me with this?

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A plumbing supply place or a decent hardware store will likely have some tubs of industrial epoxies used to seal furnances (furnace cement) which are rated to a disgustingly high temperature (usually 2000-3000 F). On one of my old beaters, I used this to seal the gaps in my newly sheet metalled floor directly above my exhaust system. There were never any breakdowns in the sealant and it was pretty thick, so it should probably hold up so long as the hole isn't super large, if it is, you can always try some sort of wire mesh as support while it cures.

 

Just a note to add. The Furnace Cement I used was caustic and had a warning label as such. I neglected to use gloves because I was 17 and knew better than anyone else. Although my hands were not badly burnt, they were a bit reddened and irritated for a day or two. Nothing bad, just annoying. I did worse to myself in chemistry lab.

 

Honestly, your biggest concern should be with flammability/temperature. Make sure before you put anything on your exhaust system that it is rated to tolerate the heat. Remeber that the closer to the engine, the hotter it is going to be.

 

JB Weld and some of the other commercial putties were designed to do spot repairs on cars. I know the PC-7 putty I have could be used for sealing up gas tanks and the like. Not sure if it was rated for safe application on an exhaust system.

 

I just double checked the specs on PC-7. It is only rated to 200 degrees. I would not recommend using it on an exhaust system.

 

JB Weld says it is safe to use at 500 degrees F. Some of the listed uses were repairing a cracked engine block and radiators, so take that for what it's worth. I personally would still prefer something with a better heat tolerance to be on the safe side.

 

Can't tell you how it functions as a noise dampener however it should create a solid seal so exhaust will get to the muffler. There wasn't an appreciable increase in the road noise from my floor after replacing it.

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you could also get a chunk of the bend it yourself exhaust tube, cut it and wrap it around the pipe and strap it down...works a bit better than the exhaust bandages and will take care of a pretty large hole, you get minor exhaust turbulance from it, but I guess that would be happening from the hole in it as well.

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go to your local car parts place (not walmart - pep boys or advanced) They have a muffler bandage, it is epoxy and a screen. Get a brass brush while you are there. Scrub the area shiney clean, then apply the bandage.

 

This is still a temporary fix. Cars are expensive and need parts. You gotta budget for it.

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Ther is also a epoxy called Quicksteel it is two part and is ment to do repairs to exhaust, it cures in about 20 min to almost metal hardness. I used it on the old heap we had when the exhaust completely broke away from the catalitic converter. As long as ther is not alot of movement between 2 seperate parts it should hold fine. As with most of these types of puttys read the safety instructions well. It stinks and will irrate the skin.

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Sorry to be a party pooper, but we've tried a lot of these things and they don't work long term in Minnesota. With the winters and the wear and tear of the road salt and differing temperatures on the exhaust system, when you get one small hole, there's plenty more waiting to happen. My hubby (who works on our cars and repairs motorcycles) says the bandages tend to fail because of the surface rust, but you could try a metal mesh screen (think window screen), put it over the hole, take JB Weld and cote it around the screen and the entire bend, then get two or three muffler bandages wrap them over the hole and keep the edges going further out over the pipe. Think an overlapping effect. That may shore it up for a while. The only other solution without replacement is to weld it shut-a wire feed welder can be rented or you can ask to borrow one if you know how to use it, but don't take it anywhere to do it, they'll just laugh at you and won't do it. Put a metal patch over it and weld it to the solid metal. This MAY help you while you save up for a new exhaust system. Trust me, in MN you can't get away with just a part of it. I had to do this a year or two ago and went to Midas where, compared to anywhere else, they were quite reasonable.

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I have to agree that the winters are the rough part on any exhaust repair. I tend to use a soda can with the top and bottom removed then split down one side (careful it is way beyond sharp) to wrap over the hole first. The aluminum bends over most areas but is stiff enough to give a surface tension to the muffler bandages that everyone has mentioned. I know it sounds crazy but I've done it to enough of my cars through the years to know that it works well enough to hold you through until another hole decides to pop through the pipes.

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CuteButPsyco nailed the problem. If you are rusting out in one area, the rest of the pipe is probably crap. All of this is a temp bandaid. Start saving your pennies and get ready to redo the exhaust system.

 

or trade cars.

 

sorry.

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This is only temporary. I asked my Father about it for you. He said to go get some aluminum exhaust tape at your local part's supply store.

 

Essentially it's temporary, and won't hold forever.

 

You can do any fix listed here but it's only going to be temporary, and honestly your best fix is to save your pennies and when you have enough cash, replace the car exhaust system. If it's rusting out that bad, no fix is going to last all that long - even welded aluminum cans. Winters anyplace in the north can be rough with all the salt used on the roads, not to mention the constant freezing and thawing.

 

Dad's nursing a 13 year old Plymouth Voyager. He's trying to get as much out of it as he can before it croaks. We bought the car brand new back in 1994 when it was already close to a model year old. It has over 213,000 miles on it, has done more trips to various colleges and graduate school then most cars have. It's made midnight trips to a college two hours away to retrieve incredibly ill children to take them to emergency. It's a car that has been around. Suffice it to say the transmission is starting to slowly go on it and Dad knows it's not long for the world and not worth getting fixed once it goes. The body is rusting out now on it, and parts have fallen off of it going down the road. Just last week as Dad was coming to my place of work to pick me up, he put on his brakes and heard something go crunch clink clank. As he pulled away from the stoplight, there was a piece of metal in the road. It was a guard to something that the brackets had rusted clear through on and it finally fell off. The benefit of that? The rattling sound he had been hearing for a few months was finally gone. Dad's sole comment on this van? "It doesn't owe us anything. It's paid for, it works for now, and it's the reason why I love Dodge products because they just last forever." It's something he hasn't been able to say about other cars he's had.

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Thanks for all the help.

 

So, if I take some Furnace cement, add some quick steel to it, or on top of it, then wrap that with aluminum tape, and put a sawed off pop can over that, I'll have the longest lasting temporary fix in history!

 

Honestly, I know replacement is the best option, but I can live with the noise, my pennies seriously need to go somewhere else. But, if I can fix this, even just for the summer, for a few bucks, game on!

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If you can live with the noise and you aren't running with an out of date inspection sticker...I'd do nothing at all. I've got a hole in the exhaust somewhere forward of the cat converter on my little mazda pickup, it needs an inspection so I'll finally have to fix it, but I know it's been there since shortly after the last inspection. As long as it's not loud enough to be pulled over for it, I'd mark it as something that needs fixing just prior to next inspection. When you do get it fixed, take it to a place that does exhaust only...around here they are usually about half as expensive as the place doing the inspection.

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Another option is to check out the local junk-yard. (If they have those in other places than the south.) You might be able to find a car like yours that has a decent exhaust system and get it cheap. The next step would be installing it, that's where you might run into a little more cash exchanging hands, but this method might be cheaper than buying it new. Worth a look.

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