I have a 2003 Passat Wagon 1.8T and the exhaust connection has rusted away near the flex pipe. The flex pipe itself does not appear to be broken but it's hard to tell because of the braiding. The downpipe (which the flexpipe is part of) was cut after the mount point and every few years meineke has welded on a new flex pipe. The transition from old to new (red arrow in pics) is where it rusted away and now it's making noise again.
Temporarily I've stuffed some versachem exahust crack sealer all around the crack to hopefully help with the noise. I'll find out tomorrow if that works but even if it does I doubt it will last because there's a lot of vibration there. The weld is completely gone so it's just one pipe in another.
I was thinking about repairing it myself this time. Though the flex pipe is not leaking yet obviously I would replace it. That old pipe is so rusty at the end that I'm not sure if I can weld on to it. I am not opposed to buying a new pipe except that it looks so difficult to disconnect the old one from the catalytic converter. The flange nuts look rusted away (unfortunately no pic of that). Also reviews for Bosal and Walker replacement pipes (they call them intermediate pipes) for this car say that the mounting tab is in the wrong position and needs to be welded. Which makes me wonder if it's worth it if they can't even get the pipe right.
Here are some pics of the pipe measurements and the pipe clamp further down (also with rusted away nuts).
Given how it looks what would you guys do? Has anyone here had to deal with a similar cut that was going bad? Any suggestions for brand or size of flex/intermediate replacement? Do you think it is possible to fix this without welding? I hesitate to weld under the car given how tight the area is.