Parts Catalog Accessories Catalog Tech Info Tech Forums
 
Follow Pelican Parts on Facebook Follow Pelican Parts on Twitter Follow Pelican Parts on Instagram Follow Pelican Parts on YouTube Follow Pelican Parts on Pinterest Follow Pelican Parts on Tumblr
  Search our site:    
View Recent Cars  |   Cart  | Project List | Order Status | Help    
 >  >
Removing Your Exhaust System
 
Bookmark and Share

Pelican Technical Article:

Removing Your Exhaust System

Nick Czerula

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$200

Talent:

***

Tools:

Set of sockets, pipe cutter, flathead screwdriver, pry bar

Applicable Models:

BMW 323Ci Coupe/Conv (1999-00)
BMW 323i Sedan/Wagon (1999-00)
BMW 325Ci Coupe/Conv (2001-06)
BMW 325i/xi Sedan/Wagon (2001-06)

Parts Required:

Exhaust gaskets, exhaust fasteners, rubber exhaust insulators

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool exhaust

Performance Gain:

Replace worn exhaust system

Complementary Modification:

Use E46 performance exhaust, replace oxygen sensors

When removing or replacing your BMW exhaust system, you can save time by removing the entire unit as one piece. Once the exhaust has been removed, repairs or modifications can be made. You can replace the rear muffler with the exhaust installed, but not the center mufflers. 

See our Pelican Parts Technical Article on Removing Your Rear Muffler for more information or simply to prep for this project. When removing the exhaust system, it is a good idea to have new fasteners, gaskets and rubber insulators on hand to save time. These parts wear out just like the exhaust system and help complete the repair and eliminate any future, potential issues.

Raise and support the vehicle on jack stands. If you raise just the rear, you should have enough space to work at the front of your exhaust. If not, raise the front of the vehicle to work on the front and raise the rear of the vehicle when removing the exhaust system. See our Pelican Parts Technical Article on Jacking Up Your BMW for more information.

When removing the exhaust system, have new fasteners, gaskets and rubber insulators on hand to help complete the repair. When removing the exhaust system and particularly if you are going to store it while other repairs are taking place, be sure to protect the oxygen sensors and their electrical leads. Do not drag the exhaust system on the ground carelessly.

Keep in mind that when your car was serviced before, parts may have been replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have, so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches. 

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you are working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability. 

Vehicle models change and evolve as they grow older, so the vehicle shown in our illustrations may vary slightly from yours. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

Raise and support front of the vehicle on jack stands. See our Pelican Parts Technical Article on Jacking Up Your BMW

Remove all four oxygen sensors from the exhaust manifold. This will help you avoid accidentally damaging the sensors. See our Pelican Parts Technical Article on Replacing Your Oxygen Sensors.

Working at the front of your exhaust system, remove the nuts that connect the exhaust system to exhaust the manifold (green arrows), wear a pair of gloves if you want to reduce nicks and cuts.
Figure 1

Working at the front of your exhaust system, remove the nuts that connect the exhaust system to exhaust the manifold (green arrows), wear a pair of gloves if you want to reduce nicks and cuts. Be careful when loosening these nuts. I like to spray studs with penetrating oil and clean the end of studs with a wire brush before removing. Depending on your region, these can seize up. If they break, don't worry. You can remove the studs by hammering them out and replacing them with new studs - I recommend you replace the old studs anyway. If the exhaust has been repaired on your vehicle, you may have clamps at the mid-point of exhaust - loosen these now.

Support the exhaust system from below using a hydraulic floor jack or jack stand.
Figure 2

Support the exhaust system from below using a hydraulic floor jack or jack stand. I like to put the jack under the muffler.

Next, working at the center of your exhaust, remove ten 13mm exhaust bracket fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 3

Next, working at the center of your exhaust, remove ten 13mm exhaust bracket fasteners (green arrows). Then remove the exhaust mount located at transmission (if equipped). Disconnect the rubber insulators from the exhaust using a pry bar. Then remove the rubber insulators from the exhaust bracket, if reusing a rubber insulator. If the rubber insulators look worn, replace them with new ones.

Remove the four 13mm muffler mounting fasteners and lower the exhaust enough to access the tailpipe flap (green arrows).
Figure 4

Remove the four 13mm muffler mounting fasteners and lower the exhaust enough to access the tailpipe flap (green arrows).

If your vehicle has a tailpipe flap, disconnect the vacuum hose to tailpipe flap (green arrow).
Figure 5

If your vehicle has a tailpipe flap, disconnect the vacuum hose to tailpipe flap (green arrow). Lower the exhaust and remove it from your BMW. You may have to wiggle the exhaust out of the exhaust manifold studs. Quick tip: if it's stuck, raise the exhaust slightly and pull your exhaust off toward the rear of vehicle.

Once the exhaust has been removed, you can replace the front mufflers or repair system as needed. If you want to reduce weight and add more horsepower, you can add a performance BMW exhaust. Line up new parts with old, and mark where you will cut. Use a pipe cutter to cut pipes - remove any sharp edges from the pipes. Install the new parts using the exhaust clamps then reinstall the exhaust system.

Bookmark and Share
Comments and Suggestions:
Dave Hofman Comments: I could not do work on my car with out these awesome DIY's, thank you Pelican Parts. I Just wanted to share my experience with removing the nuts that hold the exhaust to the manifold Figure 1. 3 of the 4 were frozen, penetrating oil did not help, i actually started rounding the head on one of them when i was using a mallet and breaker bar:. With Some reading and patience i got them off, here's how.
1. Take a propane Tourch and heat up the nut and bolt for about a minute Please have a fire extinguisher in arms reach.
2. hold a wax candle parafin wax on the heated bolt threads and the heat will make the wax wick down into the nut
3.***Important*** TIGHTEN the nut just a bit if you can before you try to loosen. this helps break the nut loose
4. Take a breaker bar and 6 point socketor wrench if you can get it to fit and whack it with a hammer or mallet. all three nuts started turning within 2 whacks.

Side note, i had to use a 3 different size sockets on the nuts due to rust build up, i ended up hammering some sockets on because the next size metric or SAE was too loose and was rounding the heads
October 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for sharing your installation process and experience. These type of comments add so much to the Pelican tech community. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ben kleber Comments: Would a clogged or clogging cat cause issues
In performance in certain rpm ranges? Ive been
Chasing an issue for about 2 weeks. Between 2800-3300 rpm my
04 325i manual trans car start to chug or lurch. Before and after that range the car is fine. If you could point me in the right direction if be most appreciative. I do have an o2sensor code for 456 pre cat sensor. Replacing that today.
July 26, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: A restricted cat will usually cause engine misfire or low power as soon as backpressure starts to exceed 1 psi. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Fazel Comments: Hi, I was advised that removing the catalytic convertor underneath the car will improve the fuel consumption but this was not the case and subsequently reinstalled the catalytic convertors but unfortunately the fuel consumption has not improved. Is this a possibility that what I have mentioned above could impact on the fuel consumption. Await your feedback.
April 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Removing your catalytic converter will not change fuel economy or engine load. Cats are a straight through design and provide very little resistance to exhaust flow. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

  Search our site:    

View Cart & CheckOut | Project List | Order Status |  Help    

 

[Home] [Customer Service] [Shopping Cart] [Privacy Statement]
 [Contact Us] [About Us] [Shipping] [Map to our Location] [Careers]

Copyright © Pelican Parts Inc.

Page last updated: Wed 12/7/2016 02:20:49 AM