Do Exhaust Tips Change Sound?

Do Exhaust Tips Change Sound

Are you looking to modify the sound of your car’s engine?

Exhaust tips can be the difference between a powerful growl coming out of your exhaust system and a weak rasp.

They can change it for the better, but just as easily change it for the worse. 

Exhaust tips are a common modification to see and hear on cars nowadays, but how do they actually work?

Other than having a sporty look and giving your engine a little extra growl, are exhaust tips worth investing in? 

In this article, we’re going to take a deeper look into what they are, how they work, and the options you have when choosing one.

By the end, you will have a better idea of which exhaust tips have the best effect on how your revs sound (see also ‘What Does A Muffler Do?‘). 

What Is An Exhaust Tip? 

Exhaust tips are fitted to the end of your exhaust system and are usually visible from the outside of your car.

Some exhaust tips simply act as a visual accessory rather than a modification that will change the way your car sounds.

This is down to how typical engine systems are designed to muffle sound rather than make it louder. 

Also known as ‘muffler tips’, the effect they have depends on several factors.

The design generally controls how your car’s exhaust will sound, depending on the length, diameter and extra features that they come with. 

How Do Exhaust Tips Work? 

Exhaust tips basically take advantage of the way an engine system pumps combustion gasses away from the main engine.

These gasses have specific pressures, and it is the job of an exhaust tip to regulate this pressure. 

Where a regular exhaust system is designed to suppress sound, an exhaust tip works to amplify it.

By choosing the right diameter and length of an exhaust tip, these gasses will be dispersed into the air with a deeper, stronger sound. 

It is important to remember that exhaust tips don’t have an effect on your car’s performance.

They are simply there to manipulate the combustion gasses to produce a greater sound and act as a visual accessory to your exhaust. 

What Affects Sound From An Exhaust Tip? 

What Affects Sound From An Exhaust Tip? 

Whilst exhaust tips might be limited in the difference they make to the sound of an exhaust, there are parts you can customize that will make quite the difference. 

Diameter

How wide or narrow your exhaust tip is will affect the sound. Wider tips allow the combustion gasses to exit quicker, which produces the stronger sound.

On the other hand, narrow tips reduce the space that the gasses can travel through and can produce a more raspy sound.

Exhaust tips vary from 1.5 to 4 inches in diameter, so there is plenty of room for customization. 

Length

Working by the same principles as diameter, the length of your exhaust tip also contributes to how restricted the combustion gasses are.

A longer exhaust tip will produce that deeper, stronger sound from your exhaust, whilst a shorter tip will restrict it. 

Intercooled

Intercooled exhaust tips are recognizable from the holes in the end of the exhaust. This is a design element that alters the flow of gas out of the exhaust.

Due to the air passing through these holes as well as directly out of the end, the exhaust makes a softer sound. 

Types Of Exhaust Tips

Depending on your budget and the sound you want to get out of your car, there are some basic types of exhaust tips that you should consider before making a decision. 

Single wall 

Single wall exhaust tips are made from a single piece of metal with a rounded end. They are on the cheaper end of the spectrum and are easy to fit as well as maintain.

The drawback with the single wall option is that they are worse at amplifying sound. 

If you are looking for a cheap, easy option to accessorize your exhaust and aren’t too concerned about the volume, single wall exhaust tips are the way to go. 

Double Wall 

It might be obvious now, but double wall exhaust tips feature two layers of metal around the exhaust.

This option is definitely for those who are more serious about getting the best sound out of their exhaust. 

They are naturally heavier than their single wall counterparts and are much more hard-wearing, so you won’t need to replace them any time soon.

Double wall exhaust tips also amplify sound much better, however, they are more expensive than single wall. 

Angle Cut 

Angle cut exhaust tips tend to be more popular with owners of larger vehicles such as 4×4.

These tips can be recognized by the exhaust being on a downward angle, which reveals more of the tip than other styles.

This is a desirable option for anyone looking to show off a little more metal, especially if it’s well-designed. 

Straight Cut 

This is your more common design that you’ll see on vehicles as it gets the maximum amount of exhaust on show.

As we have discussed, tips tend to be visible from the outside of your vehicle, therefore straight cuts are the best option if you are looking to display as much steel as possible. 

Turndown Exit 

Typically seen on wagons and HGVs, the ‘turndown’ describes the curved angle that the exhaust tip takes.

Pointing the end of the exhaust down to the ground is effective for preventing any hot combustion gasses from hitting trailers attached to the HGV. 

Final Thoughts

Choosing the right exhaust tip will affect how the sound of your engine changes, so choose wisely on diameter, length and design to avoid that raspy sound coming out of your exhaust. 

If aesthetics are your focus, exhaust tips are definitely for you. From the visual look of them to the deep sound that some can produce, they can be value for money.

Therefore, if you are looking for an improvement to your vehicle’s aesthetic and sound whilst keeping to a budget, invest in a quality exhaust tip.

Dave Oliver

Dave Oliver is a seasoned car modification expert with over twenty years of experience in the field. His knowledge spans from restoring vintage models to implementing the latest customization technologies. He brings his passion and expertise to life through informative and engaging articles.

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