How To Install Harley Exhaust Gaskets? A Step-By-Step Guide

Owning a Harley Davidson requires you to take special care of your bike. It is a higher CC bike with some additional powerful features without proper care that may give you some trouble. Today we will talk about the installation process of exhaust gaskets that will keep us running for some extra miles without any odd sounds.

This guideline on how to install Harley exhaust gasket will be truly beneficial as you don’t need to go to mechanics anymore.  When your bike has issues with exhaust gaskets, you will face several problems like backfires, absurd sound, low engine power, etc.

It is the best way to replace the defective gasket yourself; it is not tough as we will guide you on this matter.  Let’s move on with the process and move away from all trouble with the Harley exhaust gaskets. 

How To Install Harley Exhaust Gaskets

How To Install Harley Davidson Gaskets: Full Guide

How To Install Harley Davidson Gaskets Full Guide

If you are facing issues with your exhaust gaskets, you should go for immediate replacement of it. If you don’t replace the damaged exhaust gasket, the exhaust pipe will start showing abnormality. As a result, your motorcycle riding experience will affect you thoroughly. 

The damaged gasket may also cause the exhaust to become loose. It will increase the vibration of your motorcycle. So, it would help if you took immediate action to replace an old gasket off the exhaust system. 

Hence, let us explain the process to do it quickly. You can do it in several processes. 

  • You can use an OEM HD that does not require any brainer. It will save you from additional costs of buying installation items. 
  • Put it in the freezer for 3-4 hours before installation. It will keep the exhaust gasket at the right temperature for a long period for quick and easy installation. 
  • Locate the older gasket underneath the exhaust pipe. You may need to raise your motorcycle to find the exhaust pipe and its connecting gasket. Or, you may follow the user manual. 
  • Once you have found the old gasket, kindly use a screwdriver or finger to remove it. You must ensure that you don’t hurt the exhaust pipe. Otherwise, you might damage its color. 
  • Then install the new one with the help of the screwdriver, and press the edges slowly. You need to fasten the screws properly without damaging their threads. 
  • Use a sealant to connect and seal the edges accurately for better performance. It will be useful to protect the gasket from damage for a long time. 
  • Finally, use a hot gun to dry the glue properly. You must use high-quality adhesive because the gasket often becomes hotter, damaging low-quality glues. 

When you have finished installing the new gasket, you need to check the motorcycle. We suggest you drive the Harley motorcycle for 10 to 20 miles to see if replacing the older exhaust gasket is working properly or not. 

An Alternative System:

Similarly, we can do it in another way too. That is primarily similar, but you can try that too. Also, the following method will work better in a few Harley Davidson motorcycle models. 

  • You have to shrink the new gasket in the freezer for a night of 7-8 hrs. It will help the new gasket to remain in its perfect shape during installation. 
  • Remove the older one with Drexel and wire brush, and clean the edges. As you remove the old gasket, you may clean the entire exhaust system with lukewarm water and detergent. It will help you maintain the motorcycle better. 
  • Then make the new gasket soft with lubricant. You should use A-grade lubricants for better results. Or else it might not work. 
  • After that, install it with the exhaust. Look for the screwing options and tighten them properly. It will help you better maintain the gasket’s tightness with the exhaust. 
  • Attach it softly and check if there are no gaps. Then, use a sealant to keep the edges strong. The sealant will prevent the edges from wearing our due to weather and external elements. 

After finishing the installation, keep the bike idle for a few minutes. Then, run the engine for several minutes to heat it and check the installation. This is how we can get our exhaust gasket installation done and move along with your regular bike riding. 

A Keynote:

When you work with the exhaust system, including its gasket, always work carefully. Firstly, ensure that your motorcycle is in idle condition. It will cool off the exhaust pipe. Otherwise, you may experience scalding on your skin due to the heat of the exhaust pipe. 

How Do The Harley Exhaust Gasket Works?

How Do The Harley Exhaust Gasket Works

The gasket is a joint connecting seal between the manifold and cylinder head. It works like a sealant; in most cases, we do not need to use extra sealant to install it, but you can use one to make a better bonding. It plays a major role in sealing the exhaust gas exit through the catalytic converter. If we fail to use it properly, or it is not working, we will pollute the environment, which is harmful to our health. 

As we discussed installing the exhaust gasket, what happens if we do not install it at the right time? Harley Davidson bikes are among the most powerful and high CC bikes; they generate massive power while driving on the road. If the exhaust gasket is not working, it may cause many issues like polluted gas leakage, misfires, etc. So, when you face the issue, it is best to replace the gasket as early as possible. 

If you are not confident enough to install the gasket yourself, you can take expert help from your bike mechanic and use the Harley-Davidson exhaust gasket kit to get it done. 

How Much Does It Cost To Change The Exhaust Gasket?

It would help if you tried it yourself as it is a very easy process. You can follow our guide or see any YouTube video to do it in a few minutes. And that will not cost you anything. If you are not confident enough to do it yourself, you can take your bike to your nearest mechanic, who will take a few minutes. But he will charge some for the task, which will cost you a few bucks. 

Sealant Use With Exhaust Gasket

Sealant Use With Exhaust Gasket

As we have mentioned above, use sealant to make the bonding better. But generally, gaskets are made to fit by themselves; you might need them to shrink a little while installing. So, they do not need any extra sealant. It can be a money-saving deal.  

On the other hand, some of these come with their sealants, such as Fel-Pro gaskets. If you can fit it properly, it will not require any extra sealant. 

But why did we suggest extra sealant in our guide? We have made the guide as easy as possible to install by yourself. Thereby, in that process, you might need an extra sealant to strengthen the bonding. 

Final Words

We have covered the easy step-by-step process of installing Harley exhaust gaskets; now, you will be able to do it by yourself. We have discussed the possible problems regarding the Harley exhaust gasket. So, you should find it as a complete guideline to maintain the exhaust gasket. 

You must remember that installing the new gasket to replace the old one is crucial for the optimal performance of the motorcycle. If you keep riding Harley motorbikes with the old and loose gasket, it will significantly affect the riding smoothness and performance. Henceforth, it is mandatory that you change the older gasket immediately whenever you see it wearing out in the exhaust system

Frequently Asked Questions

1.What Is The Best Material For An Exhaust Gasket?

Ans: According to experts, copper is the best material that is tolerant of heat and matches all the requirements. Other conventional materials are not compatible or good enough to use on the exhaust. Manufacturers have checked the standard of copper and measured the conductors. From several tests, it is found that copper gasket gives the best performance. 

2.Do You Put Silicone On Both Sides Of A Gasket?

Ans: It is one of the wrong concepts; if you use silicone on both sides of the gasket, it will slip and will not stay in the right place. It requires clamping down the entire exhaust setup with the engine, so never use silicone and, if possible, use a copper-coated gasket for more prolonged use. 

3.Are All Exhaust Gaskets The Same?

Ans: The stores have many types and brands, but they are not the same. There are ring gaskets and flange gaskets that are used at different points of the exhaust system. There are some common materials, with a combination of other materials. You have to choose the one that will last longer. 

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