Cleaning and polishing stainless steel is crucial since dirty exhaust tips can cause many problems and badly affect the performance of an exhaust system.
There are a lot of ways to clean exhaust tips. But, more specifically, how to clean stainless exhaust tips? Firstly, to clean the stainless steel exhaust tips, make sure the tips are cool. Now, clean the tips with water and a microfiber cloth with light pressure. Now, use automotive steel wool to eliminate the tough specks of dirt that are so hellbent on clinging to. Finally, polish the tips.
I know it seems like everything but trust me, it’s just the tip of the iceberg. I have a lot more to share, and you have a lot of things to learn about honing your cleaning skill successfully.
Let’s get started.
What Do You Need to Clean Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
You can’t clean all by your hands, right? So, you need to make use of some tools, be they bought, or household will help you clean and make your exhaust tip shine like the sun.
Here are some of the tools that make the process easier:
- Hose and running water
- Car soap and old soft clothes
- Wheel cleaning brush
- Metal polish
Best Ways to Clean Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
Do you want your stainless steel exhaust to shine glittering gold when sun rays reflect on it? If yes, you need to spruce up your exhaust tips a little. Let me show you how in a few simple steps.
- Use soap and water to clean the water. In this stage, you need to wash off dirt and brake dust. You can use a degreaser and tire brush to clean that hellbent dirt hard to wash off. This is the step where you want to clean as much dirt as you can clean.
- In this step, use automotive steel wool to clean heavy carbon buildup, one of the significant causes of exhaust dirt. Spray pipes with wheel cleaner and then use automotive steel cleaner to clean tough dirt that can’t be removed with light pressure. A metal polish by itself may not be able to remove scratches.
- In the final step, you should be using metal polish to restore lustre. But keep in mind that if you have black or painted exhaust tips, refrain from this step. Here’s a good metal polish you might want to use.
There are many other ways to clean stainless steel exhaust tips, but the method mentioned above is the best bet for stainless steel-made tips.
How to Protect Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
Cleaning dirty tips is one step, but you are done yet. If you don’t maintain your health correctly but cut carbs from your diet, that won’t help you, right? Just like that, when you clean your exhaust tips, you should clean them regularly and never leave them in the dirt. Cleaning regularly will make it look beautiful as well as boost performance.
Since you have no control to block the accumulation of dirt by exhaust tips, you should have an alternate idea. A simple polish can help to protect the tips from dirt and dust.
So, the million-dollar question is-
how to polish stainless steel exhaust tips?
You will be learning all that in detail in the following sections.
How to Polish Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
Do you have any idea how beautiful your steel exhaust tips look when you polish them? Just imagine the extraordinary sun rays falling on the exhaust tips and reflecting in an unearthly way!
Are you motivated enough? Well, why are we delaying further?
Here’s the Exact Step by Step Process to Polish Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
- Start by checking whether your exhaust tips are fully stainless or not.
- Thoroughly clean ins and out the tips with non-corrosive cleaner.
- Take a higher-end Dremel and grind down the indentions inside the tips. After this step, ensure no visible indentions inside the exhaust.
- You can proceed with sanding with a drill attachment that mounts to a 2-inch flap wheel (a corded drill is recommended as this will take some time). Begin with a 150-grit flap wheel, then move on to a 240-grit flap wheel.
Read Also: How Do You Clean Chrome Exhaust Tips (4 Easy Steps)
Best Polish for Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
If you regularly keep your stainless steel exhaust tips clean and shine, you are better off using stainless steel exhaust tips. I recommend Chemical Guys Heavy Metal Polish
This metal polish can simultaneously clean and restore metallic surfaces. Metal polishes are especially great for stainless exhaust tips.
Can I Paint Stainless Steel Exhaust Tips
Yes, you can paint on stainless steel exhaust tips without any problem. But, you can’t paint on the surface of the stainless steel directly since it’s made of nonporous, durable surfaces and not appropriate for paint adhesion.
That means, if you now apply paint on stainless steel, the paint will end up with rapid color fading.
But there’s a flip side to it! If you follow the method, you can end up with excellent paint that doesn’t fade away soon.
I know you’re eagerly waiting to learn. Let me show you how. Follow exactly these:
Step 1: Make sure your exhaust tips are cool.
Step 2: Now, it’s time to clean the tips. Grab steel wool with a trisodium phosphate cleaner.
Step 3: To avoid undesirable areas from getting paints, you can make use of masking paper, plastic coverings and painter’s tape.
Step 4: Apply galvanized metal etching spray primer to clean stainless steel exhaust. As you apply the etching primer, hold it 8 inches from the exhaust. After it has dried for six hours, apply the second coat.
Step 5: Apply an oil-based spray enamel to the primed exhaust. Apply the enamel while holding the can eight inches from it. Let it dry for six hours.
Cleaning exhaust tips is one of the underrated yet valuable tasks you can do. Dirty tips not only make it look bad but also diminish its performance.
And, you can clean the tips following a few simple steps, right? In the above, I’ve mentioned everything you need to know to clean the tips the right way!
And, don’t forget to clean the tips and polish in a regular manner!
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