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Discussion Starter #1
134k, well taken care of wagon, I notice sluggish performance on big hills. Good gas mileage, no 'smell'. This has been happening for six months. Mechanic fan a full code check, no MAP problems, no rats nest in whatever filter. New fuel filter a year ago. No erratic performance, runs fine around 65+ mph.

Today Midas Muffler drilled a hole, wants 844.45 for a remanufac converter. Any thoughts on what you would do. I've heard on this Board about www.catco.com for cheaper cats. Would you pull a dead Taurus from a junkyard?

Reason being I bought this bull for 1995.00 last July, and I've put in at least 2k with a tranny, motor mts, struts, etc etc...

Also having not driven another GL wagon 3.0 engine I'm not sure I'd ever be thrilled going up big hills. Thanks in advance, this Board Rocks!
 

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What I would do is get a price quote from a shop that is not as big of a monopoly. My parents needed to get a new cat in their 97 dodge neon. The local ford shop quoted them $650. They checked with a local non chain shop who quoted them $130. I know its not the same car but a local shop might not try to screw you on labor. If you have one you trust I would get a quote from them.
 

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OMG, if this just for a replacement CAT, they are trying to rip you off to the fullest extent! You can get a Ford replacement on a auto parts website for close to $100. Please, if this angers you, buy the cheaper one, have an independant muffler shop install it for you for maybe $50, and pay Midas a visit after it's all done with. Show them how much money you saved without them and tell them they might as well steal the next customer's car because otherwise the brakes are going to cost the customer his right testicle.

p.s. sorry if I sounded improper, but I hate it when mechanics try to take people for fools.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm not offended by anyone on this Forum, its great for getting options. Its $244 at http://catalyticconvertersite.com/epcprodu...icconvertersite but I'm not sure if that is the right model, or if I need two etc.

I'm into having options, and have to compare ideas from mechanics..but I always check here first!

Is it crazy to pull a cat from a junkyard? Is it fully illegal to un do the cats till I can get them fixed? I don't want to fry the engine...
 
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I'd have to double check, but I think the 94 has two cats mounted in the y pipe. That may have been what Midas was quoting, although even that's really high. I would take the advice of these other guys and shop around. Usually it's cheaper labor wise to get a new y pipe with the cats installed and have it put on.

If you're planning on keeping the car for a while, I would just go with the new pipe as opposed to junkyard parts. This is one of those jobs you don't want to have to do twice.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The 94 does have two cats. Noticed JC Whitney quotes prices, tomorrow I'm going to talk with the trusted mechanic. Wonder if it insults him if I bring in the parts via the Net, or if he can easily match the pricing. He's a cool old guy that can get 50 cars in his lot on any given day. But he'll take a ride around the block at noon and not even lock up the shop! Calls Chevys "Shivs"...

I think I have to keep this car, no one is going to buy it fast.

How much horsepower difference did a new cat make for the average car?
 

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He's right about Midas. I assume the use Ford parts and when I called to price a new y-pipe with cats they wanted some ridiculous amount. I think is was about $1100. Napa wanted $350. I bought a welder for $280, cut the cats off, drilled them out and welded it back together. The car ran better and now I have a welder. :D
 

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Just gut the cats, man. Then you'll get MaD VUlCaN PoWa!!!1!111

In all seriousness though, that is really high for just cats. I would buy them online...you don't necesessarily need the factory Ford cat...you can buy high flow cats of similar size (make sure the pipes are the right sizes) and have him weld them in. Or, you can gut the cats. Unless you live in NJ or CA, no one will know the difference.

JR
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Took everyone's advice, did some shopping/research. Meineke wants $195 total to simply replace one cat. Midas wants $400 "lots of labor in that one".

Is it smart money to replace just the one 'bad' cat?

There were many online sources with consistent pricing on complete Y pipe sets, anyone have a favorite online vendor?
 

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I use Ford Parts Network, myself.

Do you have a vaccum guage? If so, start the engine and check the vaccum at idle. You should have 17" of vaccum, or so. Rev the motor to around 2000 rpm; the needle should swing a little bit downward, and then go right back to 17" or so of vaccum.

If it does this, the exhaust system is clear, and you don't really need a new cat. I recommend this because of the expense of the cat - I'd make sure it's bad!

BTW, the rear exhaust flange is gonna be lots of fun. There's a thread in Common Problems, where I describe how I got the rear exhaust pipe loose from the manifold. This is where most of the labor comes from, I'm sure.

Good luck!
 

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I ripped my converter loose at both ends of the exhaust, and the guy at the body shop just welded the holes together as a temporary fix untill the new converter could get there. Do you think that when I get the new converter it will make a difference in the way the car feels or sounds?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
The wagon definitely needs a cat, had a trusted mechanic do all the vacuum checks, drive it, narrowed it down, then Midas drilled the test hole.

I'm not doing the work but I appreciate the online resources.
 

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hummmm my gess is just gut them empty ive done it and it only does your car good when one cat is starting to clog is because of a lot of factor but in the end you loose power

so gut them

and then maybe a week oxygen sensor or a dirty engine for quite some time
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Cat update: Meneike, a smaller shop than Midas replaced one cat for 195$ total. Car has more pep on the low end so far. Everyone on this board inspired me to research the problem and not get ripped by Midas.

I wonder if it qualifies as normal maintenance to get your cat drilled on older cars? It is almost free at most big muffler shops, perhaps it could save an engine since I think I drove for six months like this ....
 
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