How to Wrap Motorcycle Exhaust

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Whether or not to use motorcycle exhaust wrap during your rebuild is a decision you’ll need to make as your bike comes back together.

If you’re trying to restore the bike to stock, skipping the exhaust wrap is probably the right call.

However, if you’re going for a custom build or a resto-mod, exhaust wrap might be a good choice.

What is Motorcycle Exhaust Wrap?

Exhaust wrap is made from fiberglass and is designed to control heat around the headers and exhaust pipe.

The purpose of exhaust wrap is to dampen heat on the outside of the pipes and keep the headers hotter internally.

Exhaust wrap does not provide a significant increase in power.

How to Wrap Motorcycle Exhaust

To install wrap on your motorcycle exhaust, you need to first remove the exhaust from the bike.

You want to wear gloves to protect yourself from the fiberglass in the wrap.

To install the exhaust wrap:

  • Get a bucket and soak the wrap in some water.
  • Start at the outlet of the exhaust and move towards the headers.
  • Secure one end of the wrap to the exhaust.
  • Pull the wrap tight and begin wrapping.
  • Try to overlap each layer about halfway down the wrap each time.
  • Secure the end of the exhaust wrap with a safety wire.
  • Finish it with some high-heat finish.
  • Install new exhaust gaskets.
  • Reinstall your headers.

The initial start up and ride with new exhaust wrap will likely produce some smoke and nasty smells.

Pros and Cons of Motorcycle Exhaust Wrap

Still trying to decide if you want to add some exhaust wrap to your build? Consider some of the motorcycle exhaust wrap pros and cons here.

The benefits of exhaust wrap:

  • Gives a custom look to your bike.
  • Protects you from pipe burn.
  • Lowers the external temperature around the headers.

The drawbacks of exhaust wrap:

  • Rough on your pipes in that it keeps them hotter and can shorter their life.
  • Wears out and gets dirty after a bit.
  • Looks really bad if not installed properly.

How Hot Does a Motorcycle Exhaust Get?

Motorcycle exhausts can put off some serious heat.

Combustion gas can sometimes exceed 1,000°F, however, the outside temperature of the exhaust and closer to the muffler will be cooler than this.

Most motorcycle exhausts will typically reach temperatures of around 500-700°F, and will be hotter at the headers.

Keep this in mind when looking for any high-temp motorcycle paint for your engine or exhaust.