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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks,

So the B5.5 2.8 4-Motion was throwing codes and I could smell some exhaust and hear a bit of a leak on acceleration. I suspected the flex so I went by the independent exhaaust shop I've used on occasion and they pinpointed some leaks to one of the flex pipes and the sleeve after the cat on that side as well. Quote was $260. He said he doesn't like using the sleeves as they always leak so he'll just weld a section of pipe in.

Quote seemed kinda high based on what I've heard people pay for this kind of work. I've learned to save money on jobs like this by keeping the brackets and clamps system in place and swapping out the parts myself. this time though, it just seems way to complex unbolting the whole section. I did go out and purchase a new sleeve and already changed that. There remains a tiny leak coming from the bottom of the sleeve so I may have to remove it again and grind a bit so the sleeve fits better.

As far as the flex, my idea was to just buy one of these standard 2" x 4" flex pieces (is that right?), sawzall the old one out, and then fit the new one in, try my hand at tacking it in place (will be first time using the HF welder), and then driving it to the exhaust shop to have them do the trickier welding all the way around that I lack the skills for.

Not sure I should go back to the same guy and risk him getting aggravated with pointing out the problem and then not being able to collect the $260, or maybe he'd appreciate the effort and give me a better price, but what can I expect to pay for just the weld job on the flex in this case? I'm sure this would bring it down to $100 right?

Thanks guys!
 

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I'm sure all welds are different but I had a shop weld a broken pipe once and the manager just told me to give the guy in back a $20. He didn't ring it up or anything. It took probably 2 minutes but was well worth the $ to me. Win/win.
 

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Anyone know if it is possible to clamp the flex portion in?
I'd say doubtful since the flex pipe is corrugated under the mesh. I'd guess the break is in an inner part of the corrugated section since those are the parts that flex. You could just cut it out and clamp a fixed pipe in but if it doesn't flex something will break somewhere eventually.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'd say doubtful since the flex pipe is corrugated under the mesh. I'd guess the break is in an inner part of the corrugated section since those are the parts that flex. You could just cut it out and clamp a fixed pipe in but if it doesn't flex something will break somewhere eventually.
Sorry, I meant clamp the new flex portion in. One clamp on each end. If it was one size up then it could probably slip over the pipe on there now. Something like this?

https://www.ecstuning.com/b-ansa-parts/universal-flex-section-225-x-4-priced-each/8843~ans/
 

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That would probably work but welds are so much better than clamps in the long run. I'd bet you can find a shop willing to just weld the piece in for cheap if you look around. At least here in CO there are lots of independent muffler shops who would do that in a heartbeat.
 

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Is it possible to weld these flex pipes on the car or do they take the exhaust from the car? Have the same problem, if it is easy to take the exhaust from the car I would try to weld them by someone else.
 

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I don't have a V6 4-motion so I don't know how much space there is around the flex joints but in my experience with other cars, the job is usually done with the exhaust on the car.
 

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First I have to solve my problem with the CCT, after that some O2 sensor problems. After that the flex pipes. There is not much space for a job under the car, so think a take the exhaust of the car.
 

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Find a different shop. Welding the flex in is the way to do it and should be cheap. Replace the leaky clamp with OEM. They don't leak unless the pipes are corroded underneath it or it is not tightened sufficiently.
 

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I have the V6 (non 4-motion) and the pic you have of the flex is shorter then what is on mine. Not sure if there is a difference between the 2 cars. I would go to a few other exhaust shops and get quotes. Find the least expensive place and let them handle it. Welds are much better than clamps.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Find a different shop. Welding the flex in is the way to do it and should be cheap. Replace the leaky clamp with OEM. They don't leak unless the pipes are corroded underneath it or it is not tightened sufficiently.
Thanks. I think you may be right about the clamp. It is OEM, but I might need to take it off again and do some grinding first.

About the Flex portion, I was trying to cut it out with a sawzall and a metal blade but that was not working at all. I'm used to this thing cutting trough pipes like butter. Is it because the flex was probably stainless? Not sure what is suggested to get them off. It is a tight space/angle to work in.
 

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The 4Mo pipes have the same amount of room as the FWD V6, so they are also welded on the car.
 
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