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2003 XT
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15 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Good morning -

The flange on the catalytic convertor side where it joins the mid pipe rusted and broke off on my 2003. The flange on the mid pipe still seems to be in solid shape.
I see that they make aftermarket repair kits that bolt around the pipe allowing you to connect the two together. My question is, what is the best route to go? Should I try the aftermarket repair kit that I am capable of installing myself or take it to an exhaust place and have them weld a new flange on, if that is possible. Do any of you have experience with the repair kits or this issue? I searched the forums and can't seem to locate this exact problem. Thanks!
 

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2003 EJ20K Forester
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298 Posts
I'd suggest just taking it to a muffler shop. They have the correct welding set up and materials available to do the job quickly and well. I do a lot of stuff on my own, but for this one the price vs the time you'd spend doing a (probably) lower quality job makes it a no-brainer to take it in.
 

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2010 Forester Premium X AT
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962 Posts
I don't know, in my experience, the metal that muffler shops use to weld is notoriously rust prone. Virtually nobody welds with good quality stainless I assure you. Personally, I would use a "bolted split repair flange". This is going to be of better quality metal and last longer IMHO than a shop trying to weld something together.
 

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2003 EJ20K Forester
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298 Posts
Oem is probably 409 'stainless', really cheap aftermarket tube is probably just aluminized mild steel. You'd have to do some reasoning to figure out which route to go. What condition is the rest of the system in? Will a top dollar repair be a waste when the cat gives up, or the pipe rusts through elsewhere?
 

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2003 XT
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15 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks all for the input. I guess I could try the aftermarket repair kit and if it holds for a while that would be fine. I would only be out around $30 for that and the gasket. The rest of the system looks to be in pretty decent shape. Car only has 110k on it so the cat should be good for a bit. I could revisit a having it welded at a repair shop in the spring.
 
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