Sunday, June 8, 2014

Installing My New Exhaust at Pit-Row

Last week, for my birthday, I bought a Magnaflow cat-back exhaust for my Veloster, and was really eager to get it installed on the car. I tried doing it in the garage with Wayne but the lack of space, even after jacking the car up, considerably hindered any progress. When I called around to shops in San Francisco, most wanted $80-$150 to do the work, so I decided to try and find another option.

Enter Pit-Row in Santa Clara. The basic premise of the shop is that you rent a lift, and have access to all kinds of tools that you might need to do work on your car. In my case, it was wrenches, air tools, sockets, pry bars, etc. Bunny and I headed down yesterday afternoon, and I was in awe of how great this place was. The shop is run by Dennis and his wife, Selma, and is modeled after popular DIY garages in Germany. There are 9 lifts available for rent, and even specialty tools like grinders, parts washers, and presses. It's also remarkably clean - the whole facility was sparkling.

After signing their waiver and getting an overview of the pricing, Dennis showed me how to use the lift and where all the tools were. And then it's game on - I had the Veloster up in the air and went to town. Bunny and I quickly got down and dirty pulling off the stock exhaust. Two 19mm bolts that gave Wayne and me a hard time by hand fell off in two seconds with the impact wrench. The whole install took around an hour and a half, and Dennis checked in every once and a while to make sure everything was going alright. If things go wrong, he'll even assist at a greatly reduced rate compared to other shops.

I could have just handed my car off to some random shop and had them do the install. I could have done that, but driving away from Pit-Row last night, Bunny and I had the satisfaction of knowing that we had put our own time and energy into this project, and our well-earned dinner (Reuben sandwiches at Max's) was especially delicious. I loved the learning opportunity, and experience of working on my own car in a real workshop. I'm already looking for more excuses to work on the car there, and would happily recommend this shop to anyone who likes to put their own sweat into their car.

All pictures courtesy of Bunny

 Getting the lift positioned
 Using air tools to get stubborn nuts loosened
 Stock exhaust view
 Unpacking new pipes

 Glamor shot of my wheels

 Getting the stock muffler off
 Stock exhaust removed
 Adjusting the rear y-pipe
 Finishing up the install
 New cat-back installed

1 comment:

  1. AnonymousJune 08, 2014

    Awesome work, wish there was a place like this in Vegas!