When you think of an exhaust system, mufflers, pipes, catalytic converters and manifolds come quickly to mind. But these parts would leak or fall off the vehicle without those unsung supporting players the clamps, hangers, gaskets, and seals. Combined, these small but important components prevent noisy exhaust leaks that could also allow dangerous fumes to enter the cabin, and properly support the system to prevent component strain and rattles.

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A typical exhaust system has several junctions where the components in the system are connected. The parts needed for a secure attachment and a leak-proof seal vary according to the component and connection method. The prevention of exhaust leaks is paramount. A leak before the muffler can create noise, and a leak anywhere in the system can allow poisonous Carbon Monoxide (CO) to enter the cabin, endangering the driver and passengers.

On some vehicles the machined surface of the exhaust manifold is mounted directly against the surface of the cylinder head, but on most applications a gasket is used at this connection. Gaskets are also available for applications not originally equipped with a gasket, as it’s common for manifolds to warp somewhat in service and for the sealing surfaces to corrode and degrade to a point where a gasket is necessary for a tight seal. The manifold flange to exhaust header pipe is another joint where a gasket is commonly used, and there may be other components like the catalytic converter that require gaskets.

Exhaust gaskets are constructed from a variety of materials including embossed steel, multilayer steel, graphite, and copper. There are also composite gaskets with heat resistant material attached to a steel core. While exhaust gaskets must be used in conjunction with fasteners, exhaust clamps both seal and secure components. Clamps are typically used to connect exhaust pipes to mufflers, resonators, catalytic converters, and in some cases to attach exhaust hangers. There are several types of exhaust clamps including band clamps, sleeve clamps, and the traditional U-bolt clamps.

Exhaust hangers support the exhaust system in its designed location and insulate the chassis from engine vibration. Most modern original equipment style hangers are made from reinforced rubber with holes that slip over metal brackets that are welded to exhaust pipes and/or the muffler, and attached to the chassis. It’s common for hangers to crack, tear, and eventually break from age and exposure to heat and the elements. Broken hangers can allow the system to hang low where it could suffer impact damage, and move excessively and contact other chassis components, resulting in noise and vibration.

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Replacement Exhaust Gaskets Reviews

Average rating:  4.5  4.7 - 48 reviews
Read All Clamps, Hangers, Gaskets Reviews
5 of 5
BTP Manifold Heat Spacer
Researched the part as part of upgrading my valve covers on my 86 Gt Mustang, and this kit was recommended. I used it with any issues, and made working on the valve covers much easier. Very good product for its cost.
PPosted by Paul (Helotes, TX) /
1985 Ford Mustang
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