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2009 Acura TL - is it the exhaust system?

My 2009 Aura TL makes a fluttering noise when I accelerate. It disappears after the car reached 30+ MPH. Acura mechanic says it’s the exhaust and can replace exhaust system for $5K+. i feel it’s something else. Anyone else have this problem?

Well, first of all you have exhaust problems repaired by a muffler and exhaust shop. It will be a lot less money. Second , if you doubt that is the problem you get a second opinion.

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A 9 year old vehicule with exhaust problem is unlikely unless it was driven most of its life in the rust belt where the use of road salt is common.Get a second and third opinion on this.

+1 to both of the preceding comments.
Rather than accepting the dealership’s diagnosis, the OP should have another shop take a look-- and a listen. If another shop concurs that there is an exhaust problem, a specialized exhaust/muffler shop can do the job for a much lower price than the dealership.

Most shops like Midas will give you a free inspection and an exact tally of what is required. Stay away from the dealer with his high overhead and overselling service writers.

Sorry Docnick , but I can’t agree with telling anyone to use Midas . They have never met a exhaust system that just needed minor repair.

You reminded me of working at the GM (Buick) dealership in the mid 1970s. I was doing a simple muffler replacement on a Cadillac sedan. I was getting the muffler from the parts department and the part number on the box seemed familiar. It dawned on mw it was the same number as the Chevrolet Caprice I had done 2 days prior. Not a surprise with GM cars. I was surprised that the price on my invoice was $85 for the Cadillac when it had been $30 for the Chevrolet. I asked the parts guy and he showed me the prices in the GM parts catalog saying it was quite normal! I wonder if Honda/Acura and Toyota/Lexus have a similar scheme sorry system?

For a repair that costs as much as $5000, I suggest at least two more evaluations. Just tell the shop what the symptoms are and don’t tell them about the first estimate. If you do, that might color the response.

It can also pertain to labor, in addition to parts.
I bought my POS Volvo from a dealership that also had a Pontiac franchise. Because the Volvo was such an unreliable POS, I spent a LOT of time at that dealership. One day, as I was sitting alone in the service manager’s office, I saw the chart that he used to multiply the service/repair fees for various Pontiac models.

I can’t recall the exact numbers, but it was something along the lines of…
For Bonneville, multiply Catalina prices by 1.4, for Grand Prix multiply by 1.8, for Grand Ville multiply by 2.
In other words… if you can afford a more expensive model, we are going to rake you over the coals when it comes time for maintenance and repairs, just because… we can…

A good locally owned muffler shop is the best bet by far, in my experience here in Duluth, MN and Superior, WI. Many places have businesses like these.

There may a component in the exhaust system that is loose. Once diagnosed, not difficult to fix or replace. The dealer giving you a $5K estimate was an insult, not an offer of help or useful information.

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I guess it depends on where you live because I have had both Midas and Meineke do limited repairs on various cars I brought to them. One place went out of their way to patch a pipe in front of my muffler to avoid replacing the pipe and muffler. It lasted for three years before I got rid of the car. The Meineke shop makes their own Y pipes at half the price I got for buying the OEM part online. Saved me a couple hundred bucks and I still have that car, maybe 10 years ago now they fixed it!

Our labor flat rate was standard. Make, model, year, drivetrain, and options. What you describe was similar to GM’s price difference for the same part. The affluent can actually be offended if the cost for the repair of their much more expensive vehicle is the same as a Chevy. While working class people brag about getting a good deal and saving money the affluent brag about spending more money! Why would the Pontiac dealer not take advantage of the “educated idiots”?

I had a 73 Lincoln for the wife to use to commute to school back then but it had a broken tail light lens, I stopped at the Lincoln dealer to see about a new one and they wanted $85 for a $15 part. I don’t know what the comparable Ford part would have been but no where near $85. I didn’t buy it.

I don’t recall any Lincolns that used the same tail light lenses as comparable Ford models.
Which Lincoln model did you own?

Why would you attempt to defend that rapacious type of behavior?

Um… Because the idiots want to pay more so they can brag about it?

How do you know on a factual basis that those car owners (… without your pejorative description of them as “idiots”…) actually wanted to pay more for the maintenance of their cars?

I have met them. Have you?

I had the Continental. At the time of the great gas upheaval, it was cheaper than buying a more fuel efficient vehicle and safer too for the 90 mile commute. I didn’t mean that there was an exact duplicate of a Ford to a Lincoln tail lens but only that a Ford tail lens was likely to be half the cost of the Lincoln lens. Yeah sure we know all about economies of scale and so on, but still didn’t think I needed to spend $85 for it.

No way to tell via the internet, but that certainly is consistent with a leak in the exhaust system. If so, it depends where the leak is how difficult and expensive it will be to fix. If the cats need to be replaced, you have 3 of them so it might well be pretty expensive. To just replace the 3 cats I’m seeing $1500 in parts and 4.5 hours labor. So $5000 to replace the entire system seems within possibility. If you elect to have the exhaust system repaired or replaced, I concur with the comments above, get a quote from an independent shop first. If you don’t already have an inde shop you use, ask your friends, coworkers etc who they use, and from that list choose one that specializes in Acuras or at least Asian cars.

If you live in an area where they salt the roads, it’s quite likely the best approach will be to replace all or most of the exhaust system. When I lived in Colorado I had to be replacing exhaust system parts all the time due to rust. One time my truck’s muffler fell off while I was driving . As you might expect, this occurred right as I was pulling away from her house, after a first date with a potential gf. No second date … lol …