The Rules of Buying a Replacement Exhaust Flange Bolt and Spring
Corrosion is the worst enemy of exhaust flange bolts and springs. Rust forms easily on the bolt heads and even on the threads because they are constantly exposed to extreme heat around the exhaust system and other factors like moisture in the air. If not replaced regularly, bolts and springs wear out and deteriorate and this can damage the entire exhaust flange. Prevent this by changing the spring bolts once in a while. When buying replacement parts, here are some rules that you can follow to be sure that you're getting what's best for your car.
Rules in getting the correct size
- Get the size that fits in your car. You can use a special measuring tool to determine the exact diameter size of the exhaust flange holes where the bolts and springs are mounted. Another way, check your car manual for tech specs and component requirements.
- Bring the old bolts and springs with you to the auto part store. Find new components that look exactly the same as the old. Always refer to the labels and product descriptions on the box of the new components. The size indicators are usually written there.
Rules in buying online
- Buying online is a good option because you can save a lot of time and effort because you can purchase parts even when you're at home. However, you can get overwhelmed by so many options. Narrow down your choices by browsing according to your budget, vehicle type and model, and preferred brands.
- Always check if the website you're looking at is authentic. Bogus car parts resellers are rampant nowadays, so be careful. Once you find a site, search about its performance history first before making a payment. Verify if the site contains payment certificates such as VeriSign or Thwate, to be sure that any money transaction is secured.
Rules in paying the right price
- Check the spring and bolt's price from different stores, websites, and brands if you have time. This way, you can compare prices to budget your money efficiently. Also, keep in mind that not all expensive parts are way better than cheaper ones. Buying aftermarket bolts and springs is a great option; their quality is at par with OEM, but their price is more affordable.
- Buy exhaust flange bolt and spring sold in kits so you can save more money.
Exhaust Flange Bolt and Spring: The Right Way to Remove and Replace
Changing the exhaust flange bolts and springs in your car is as easy as ABC; the hardest part-removing them, especially if you haven't changed them in a while. Chances are, dirt and rust have already settled in the bolt threads and heads. A wrench or a socket alone may not be enough to cut the bolts loose. However, there are other ways that you can try. They are proven to be effective in taking out stubborn bolts and springs. If you want to try them out, here's how.
Difficulty level: Moderate
- Safety glasses
- Safety gloves
- Wrench set
- Ratchet set
- Socket set
- Long extension for ratchet
- Oxy-acetylene torches
- Penetrating oil
- Fire extinguisher
Using the oxy-acetylene torch:
Step 1: Clean your working area. Make sure that there are no combustible materials like paper and wood. Underneath the car, see to it that there's no fuel leaking. For added safety, wear your gloves and safety glasses before starting to work. Keep the fire extinguisher near you in case of fire.
Step 2: Get the torch and heat the exhaust flange bolt until it has an orange glow. Keep the torch six to eight inches away from the bolt.
Step 3: Allow the bolt to cool down a bit then use a socket and a ratchet to loosen it. If you are able to release the bolt, follow the same procedure to take the other bolts and springs out.
Step 4: If the bolt remains stuck, use the torch again to melt the bolt head. Once you see the molten metal dropping on the floor, turn the torch off then hit the threaded side of the bolt with a hammer until it falls from the exhaust flange. Do the same procedure to the other bolts and springs.
Using the drill:
Step 1: Spray liberal amount of penetrating oil on the bolt. If possible, leave the bolt for 24 hours to allow the oil to seep within the threads.
Step 2: Grip the head bolts using your pliers and try to loosen the nut. If the bolt is already broken, try gripping any remaining part that protrudes. Do not break the bolt further.
Step 3: Grind the bolt until its surface flattens. Mark the center of the bolt.
Step 4: Drill the bolt as far as you can go, and then reverse the drill. Clean the metal shavings from time to time. Increase the hole diameter gradually. Do the same until the only thing remains is the bolt thread. Pull it out of the bolt hole.
You can now insert the new exhaust flange spring and bolt. Slide the springs through the bolt before tightening the nut. Do not forget to measure the right tension of the spring. Adjust the springs gradually until the right tension is achieved. Avoid over compressing the springs.
That's it. Enjoy this DIY replacement project and good luck.