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Neuspeed Exhaust Install - Audi A4, 1.8T

Prior Experience: None
Cost: Cost of Exhuast
Time: 2 hours....or 3 days depending

Discuss this mod - Here

I was able to pick up a used Neuspeed exhaust for 400 bucks, so I decided to install it myself to keep the costs low. Unfortunately I do not have access to a lift, so I had to do this in the parking lot on jackstands and ramps. I can tell you this was a nightmare. Although it is possible to do on jackstands, I would suggest getting access to a lift, I know that if I had this guide when I did the install, I would have saved a lot of time but I still recommend a lift.. I ask that you READ THIS WHOLE THING before you even think of starting.

Audi A4 exhaust   Audi A4 exhaust
Before      After

SUPPLIES -The supplies will change depending on whether you have a new or used exhaust. If you buy it new, you will (hopefully) get everything you need. Since I bought mine used, I had to go get the things that werent included - exhaust gaskets, bolts, etc. Although these things seem minor, they actually add up to quite a bit. The gaskets are not as cheap as you would expect. I picked them up from the local Monroe Muffler along with the bolts needed, nuts and washers needed for the install. The items listed below are for the NS exhaust, and I am assuming you can figure out what you need for your specific system. The picture below is just of the gaskets for your reference. NOTE - If you have a 6 speed, the NS exhaust will require that you purchase a seperate exhuast hanger from the DEALER. I will refer to this piece as the Lollipop (pics later) connector. It bolts the exhuast to the tranny, and is not present on 6 speed cars. The 5 speeds already have this.

Audi A4 exhaust
Material Quantity Price
Exhuast   $400-1000
Triangular Gasket 1 $10.47
Diamond Gasket 3 $10.47
Nuts and Bolts (M10) 6 ?
Nuts and Bolts (M8) 3 ?
PB Blaster or Equivalent 1 5.97

NOTE: The entire install SHOULD take about 2 hours. However you must understand that mine took about 3 days. I suffered from the typical "one last bolt" that was rusted/stripped which cost me an entire day. In order to even attempt this install you have to understand that your exhaust (especially up by the turbo) gets extremely hot. The nuts/bolts are practically welded in place. I tried every method in the book to get these things free, and the "one last bolt" would not budge. I ended up cutting it off, which I was initially reluctant to do. Since this problem is bound to happen to other people, I will present this writeup in two sections. The first is just showing you how it COULD go...the minimum possible work. The second part will show you what I actually did. First we should get a list of tools out there though. You will honestly need all of these, so if you dont have them, don't try.

12 mm wrench 1/2 inch socket wrench
17 mm wrench 12 inch long extension (5 inches)
1/2 in socket 1/2 inch short extension (2 inches)
3/8 wrench swivel extension 1/2 wrench swivel extension
3/8 inch long extension (5 inches) 17 mm socket
3/8 inch shor extension (2 inches) Propane "Pencil" Torch
3/8 inch socket wrench Possibly a dremel tool

The very first thing you need to do is get the car up on the jackstands and or ramps. I thought I would be able to just use ramps on the drivers side of the car (since I don't have a good jack at school), but I soon found out that was not enough. Either way I got a set of Rhino ramps from Wal-Mart, and some cheap jackstands. I put the passenger side of the car up on ramps, and jacked up the front of the drivers side. This was enough to get the job done.

Audi A4 exhaust

  Audi A4 exhaust
After the car is in the air, you have to start by removing the plastic cover that is on the bottom of your car. There are 5 flat head screws that require a 1/2 turn each to remove this part. The plastic piece is actually 2 pieces. For this job, you only need to remove the section closes to the rear of the car. I thought I took a picture of this, but I cant find it.

The first thing we need to do is get an idea of what is going on under the car. The NS exhaust is a cat back system, so we need to start by removing the stock exhaust from the cat. These are the bolts that i warned you about. I SUGGEST that you take your PB Blaster and hit all the nuts with it before you start trying to take them on. They will be very rusted and very hard to get off.

You will be doing two things: First the bolt will be 'welded' to the exhaust flange itself (internally - where the threads are), and second the nut will be rusted/welded to the bolt.

In order to get the bolt/nut spinning inside the exhaust flange, I would recommend using a torch to heat up the exhaust flange. For my system, a 12mm wrench fit on the nut (although it was rusted) and a 1/2inch socket fit on the bolt. After i heated up the flange, I assembled a socket/extension setup to reach the nut and bolt, and started working them free.

If you plan on doing this, get used to this view:

Also, pictured here is the CV boot cover. If you choose, you can remove that to clear some room. I didnt have the proper allen keys, so I left mine on (probably a mistake now that I think back)

  Audi A4 exhaust
Audi A4 exhaust  

If you are lucky, you will get all three nuts/bolts off and be on to the next step. This was NOT what happend with me, however I will proceed with what to do next assuming you got them all out. In all honesty, you should expect an hour of wrenching and knuckle cutting before you get those bolts off, if not worse. If they do not come off in a reasonable amount of time...please skip to the next section and the come back to this part....this IS NOT the only way.

After you get the exhaust off from the cat, you have to disconnect the Lollipop connector from the Tranny as pictured here.

If you have the exhaust off the cat, and the Lollipop connector disconnected, 95% of the work is done. Just work your way back (around the middle of the car) and you will see two rubber exhaust hangers. These things are 'supposed' to come off the steel hangers that are welded to the exhaust, however I was so pissed by the time I got to this point, that I could not bother with them. I used a torch to heat up the rubber, and cut them off with a pair of snips. I decided to replace these with a set I bought at AutoZone for 10 bucks. Here are two pics of the hangers

Audi A4 exhaust


Audi A4 exhaust
Audi A4 exhaust  

After you remove the exhuast from the mid-section hangers, there is not much left. When you proceed towards the rear of the car, you will see the mufflers are hung by two brackets.

Use your 1/2 socket and and extension to remove these brackets. After this is done, the whole exhaust will slide right out.

Here is a pic of the rear exhuast hangers.

Audi A4 exhaust  

Here is a side-by-side shot...NS on the left, OEM on the right

Audi A4 exhaust  

The next step would be to remove the Lollipop connecter, and the rear exhuast brackets from the OEM system and place them on the NS system.

Here is a closeup of the Lollipop connector.

If you have made it this far, all thats left is the reverse install. For the NS sytem, you can start with the pipe at the cat, and work your way back. You should install all the pipes without tightening down any of the bolts. Then when they are all in place, and all the hangers are screwed in, go back and tighten the bolts. Make sure you have gaskets between each connection, and the bolts are tightened down well. If you decided to cut out the OEM mid-section rubber hangers like I did, you will have to get some hangers from AutoZone/PepBoys and install those. In order to get them to slide on the metal hangers, spray them with WD-40 or some other lubricant.

Like I said earlier, this description is the IDEAL case. It is not what I did, and probably wont be what you need to do. There are many ways to do this install. In the next section you will find more detail.

NS Exhaust Install - Section 2

Like I mentioned earlier, I had some serious issues with one bolt. For me, it was the one nut/bolt that connected the exhuast to the cat which can be seen from under the hood. Pictures of the culprit are here:

Audi A4 exhaust   Audi A4 exhaust

When I started having problems with this, I consulted the people on AZ (itsallstock, 400hpa4, Jeff, etc.). I got about 20 different suggestions, and I probably tried them all. I bought "Bolt Outs" from Sears, I tried PB Blaster, WD-40, Liquid Wrench, a torch, etc. Nothing would work on this. I wanted to stay away from destructive methods, but I had no choice. In my case the nut/bolt were spinning in the flange, but the nut would not break loose from the bolt. I purchased a nut-splitter from the local hardware store, and of course it did not fit. So my last choice was to cut it. In order to get a dremel up in the spot, I had to do a decent amount of work. I will show this all here.

In order to get more room from underneath, I had to back the entire exhaust system out. To do this, the Cat had to be unbolted from the turbo. Before that could happen, I had to remove the stock airbox. When you are looking at it, it becomes obvious what you need to do to disconnect it. So below is two pictures that should help. These pictures are taken after the air inlet connections have been removed. (The simple removal of this is shown in the K&N instal guide)

Audi A4 exhaust

  Audi A4 exhaust
Audi A4 exhaust  

After those connections are removed, there is one more that you will need to disconnect. This is shown here.

With the stock airbox out, you should get a good look at the cat/turbo connections as shown here:


  Audi A4 exhaust
Audi A4 exhaust  

The cat and turbo are connected by three 17mm bolts. You will need to utilize your 1/2 wrench, extensions, 17 mm socket, swivel and 17 mm stubb wrench to get these all out

Audi A4 exhaust  

You will also have to unscrew the upsream O2 sensor located on the cat.

Audi A4 exhaust  

After all that is done, it should look like this

When you have the cat unbolted, you can get back under you car and pull the cat from the turbo. It will slide back about 6 inches before you see the downstream O2 sensor get in the way. If you are able to cut the bolt at this point, then do it. If not, you can disconnect the downstream O2 sensor in a similar fasion to get another inch or two.

After I cut the bolt, I just resumed the steps earlier. Obviously this is a bit more work, but it can be done.


NOTE: If your jackstands are high enough, and if you have removed the CV boot cover, it will be possible to slide the cat out of the car from the bottom. This will allow you to cut/unscrew the seized bolts away from you car. Unfortunately I did not do this.

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