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Old 04-01-2013, 04:44 PM
 
547 posts, read 1,048,213 times
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My dad was told by the Inspection Station he needed a new muffler to pass the inspection and was directed to a shop located across the street. Since my dad was in a bind for time and wanted to get the inspection done, he went to the suggested shop because it was so convenient. A new muffler was installed and he was told it had a warranty.

Now only 4 years later the muffler has gone bad. Since it had a warranty, he took his car back to the same shop. Shop told him they would replace the muffler free of charge, but would have to charge him for labor which seemed very high to me.

It seems to me a muffler should last longer than 4 years and it also seems to me they have created residual income because each time they put on a "new muffler" (with a so-called warranty) they get to collect for the labor involved. He thinks he is stuck with them because if he goes to a different shop he will have to pay for a new muffler plus labor.

I'd like to hear some opinions on this.
How long are mufflers supposed to last?
Could this be a set-up to keep customers coming back paying for high labor just so they can get a "free" muffler?

By the way, the Brand of the Muffler is the same as the name of the shop. It is a well known brand but I didn't know if I'm allowed to post it or not.


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Old 04-01-2013, 05:03 PM
 
166 posts, read 526,173 times
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Unless the car is driven in snow conditions were salt is used on the roads, I think a muffler should last at least ten years. And I don't think SA is inspecting for smog yet.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:52 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX USA
5,160 posts, read 9,720,178 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BroadStreet/PattisonAve View Post
Unless the car is driven in snow conditions were salt is used on the roads, I think a muffler should last at least ten years. And I don't think SA is inspecting for smog yet.
They check(or at least the inspection rules say they should) the exhaust for "leaks" not emissions, so if it has holes it will fail inspection
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Old 04-01-2013, 06:21 PM
 
547 posts, read 1,048,213 times
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When he went back to the shop last week, they showed him the holes in the muffler. I'm not sure if they showed him holes when it was replaced 4 years ago.

But the point is...what would cause a "new" muffler to get holes in only 4 years?

I suspect the mufflers they install are cheap causing customers to have to return in a short time and then they charge high labor. It's called "Residual Income"!!!
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:39 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,621 posts, read 13,014,408 times
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Short trips will destroy a muffler pretty quick. As the engine starts to heat up, it's condensing the water on the cool exhaust parts. As they heat up, the moisture gets cooked off. But short trips does not let it cook the moisture off and rust becomes a friend to the exhaust system. If he hasn't replaced the muffler and doesn't mind a little noise, have a shop install either a stainless muffler or a Cherry Bomb which has an aluminum casing. Neither are effected by rust or moisture. Life expectancy is near forever.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:16 PM
 
2,721 posts, read 3,426,090 times
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Default The Life of a Muffler,

Auto Mufflers last a very long time. Ten to twenty years. Except as was mentioned before
where road salt is used for De-Icing. Even then they last pretty well.
My Grandfather had to replace his muffler every few years. He was elderly and barely drove
the 1983 Oldsmobile, only to the grocery store. The muffler shop explained to my dad that
this happens when a car is not driven very much. The condensation inside the muffler is never evaporated
completely out by any real engine heat and so the moisture will be retained and then
rot a muffler, rusting it from the inside out.
Grandfather only drove to the grocery store and back. An HEB that was two blocks away and
the car was only three or four years old when they first replaced the original factory muffler. Even after
ten years or he only had only 9000 miles on it.

Last edited by huckster; 04-01-2013 at 08:59 PM.. Reason: sp. edit
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Old 04-02-2013, 11:11 AM
 
547 posts, read 1,048,213 times
Reputation: 159
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
Short trips will destroy a muffler pretty quick. As the engine starts to heat up, it's condensing the water on the cool exhaust parts. As they heat up, the moisture gets cooked off. But short trips does not let it cook the moisture off and rust becomes a friend to the exhaust system. If he hasn't replaced the muffler and doesn't mind a little noise, have a shop install either a stainless muffler or a Cherry Bomb which has an aluminum casing. Neither are effected by rust or moisture. Life expectancy is near forever.
Quote:
Originally Posted by huckster View Post
Auto Mufflers last a very long time. Ten to twenty years. Except as was mentioned before
where road salt is used for De-Icing. Even then they last pretty well.
My Grandfather had to replace his muffler every few years. He was elderly and barely drove
the 1983 Oldsmobile, only to the grocery store. The muffler shop explained to my dad that
this happens when a car is not driven very much. The condensation inside the muffler is never evaporated
completely out by any real engine heat and so the moisture will be retained and then
rot a muffler, rusting it from the inside out.
Grandfather only drove to the grocery store and back. An HEB that was two blocks away and
the car was only three or four years old when they first replaced the original factory muffler. Even after
ten years or he only had only 9000 miles on it.
Thanks for the interesting information.
My dad drives his car everyday, back and forth to work and to do his shopping etc., so I don't think that would apply to his case.

By the way, I just found out he actually paid an extra $100 for a "warranty or guarantee" when the Muffler was installed 4 years ago, which is why he was now offered a "free" replacement of the muffler, but has to pay the high labor to install it. What a rip-off !!!
It sounds like a way to keep customers coming back to their shop to pay them for high labor fees. Residual Income!

Can anyone suggest an honest shop that does good muffler work?
I have googled and there are lots of shops listed. I've read the reviews of the shops that have reviews posted.
Of course one never knows which reviews are authentic and which are posted by the shop employees.
In my opinion...the best recommendation is word of mouth, preferably by someone that's "been there done that".

When I was Googling for Muffler Shops in San Antonio there was a link to Angie's List. It said "69 Muffler Repair Shops are in San Antonio" but only "4" are top rated". To find out which 4 are top rated there was a link to "Join Now". So maybe I need to sign up for Angie's List.



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