- While any exhaust system will affect vehicle performance in one way or another, RVs present a number of unique challenges where exhaust design is concerned. RVs are often tremendously heavy relative to the hill-climbing torque their engines produce, so maintaining or enhancing torque is a much higher priority than making horsepower. Additionally, a well-designed exhaust system can net you some noticeable gains in economy for these thirsty nomads.
- If your RV doesn't already have them, install a set of full-length, tubular race headers in place of your stock exhaust manifolds. You'll want to purchase a set of headers with the longest and thinnest possible primary tubes offered for your engine. Tubes like these will help to increase exhaust gas velocity to enhance torque at low rpm, which is right where your RV needs it most. Have the headers coated inside and out with ceramic-metallic powder coating to keep heat inside where it can help to increase velocity instead of cooking your engine bay.
- It is generally not illegal to install converter bypasses; it is, however, illegal to open them on public roads. However, the law reads you can't use (open) a converter bypass, not that you can't have one. Catalytic converters retain a great deal of heat and pressure under heavy loads, which can back up into your engine and cause overheating. If you tend to operate your RV up extremely steep grades on private property, opening the converter bypass while ascending can save you a serious repair bill. This is doubly true if you're towing a car, truck or heavy trailer behind. Keep in mind, however, that your RV's computer will notice that the converters have suddenly dropped in temperature. As a result, you'll need to install O2 sensor simulators or a MIL eliminator on the second O2 sensor to trick your computer into thinking the converter is still working.
High Flow Exhaust
- Past the catalytic converter, the only thing your exhaust system does is keep the motor quiet and impede flow. Using the largest diameter pipes and highest-flowing mufflers you can find will enhance torque, horsepower and fuel economy. You might want to consider installing a pair of mufflers, one for quiet operation and another for huge exhaust flow. You can use an electric exhaust cut-out (which is just a large butterfly valve) to close off the high-flow muffler when you're cruising around town. You can open the valve by manually flipping a switch or by using a full-throttle activation switch designed for nitrous oxide systems. You could even use the same switch that powers your converter bypass to open the muffler valve for a huge power boost on demand.