Duped on a Flex Pipe?

In summer '13 I had both input and output sensor replaced in my Hyundai Tuscon '05 because of the output sensor fault code and fail safe shifting issues. Along with these sensors, Meineke replaced a flex pipe to muffle an absurdly load rumble. These troubles began as I was driving from WI to CA for the summer, either in the Rockies or the Mojave Desert. This work was done in LA while there for a summer internship.

By winter '14 (back in Wisconsin) I was getting the sensor fault codes again (now both input/output codes) along with the shifting problems, and the harley-level rumble had returned.

Having just dumped $1k into the car, I was hesitant to go get the same repairs but I couldn’t bring it back to the Meineke that did the work halfway across the country. I brought my car into a local WI shop because Meineke wouldn’t do anything about the sensors or flex tube that had gone bad in a matter of months, and redid the work from last summer = $600.

The WI mechanic hardly believes a NEW flex pipe was installed on my vehicle because of the condition the pipe was in. Please see the attached image and comment on whether this flex pipe resembles a flex pipe that has been on a vehicle for a few months. Thanks for the input!

There was never a new flex pipe installed.

You were duped.


Maybe if the pipe was red hot and you drove it into salt water a foot deep…But if that’s not the case, Tester is correct…

Yep. I’ll third that. That flex pipe would be in abnormally bad shape even if it were the original part from when the car was built. No way was it replaced last year.

It’s certainly not an OEM part, but there are aftermarket parts coming in from China that can be of astounding low quality…Using these parts is one way chains like Midas can offer cut-rate prices and still make a profit…

If that was a new flex pipe in 2013, than I’m Bill Gates.
Consider this an expensive lesson in the Wonderful World of Meineke, where anything is possible.

Write a formal letter of complain with photos to Meineke corporate offices, and even keep the pipe as evidence. Since Meineke does business across state lines, you might even be able to bring them to small claims court in your home state, but you’d need to check into that. Bring that pipe into any judge in the land (along with paperwork documenting Meineke installation, which could even be your credit card statement), and he’s bound to find in your favor.

SMB, I agree that any judge should find in @powerfactor0‌’s favor, but I’m not sure how many judges would know enough about cars to make the correct finding. I suspect they would just dismiss the case unless the OP shows up with professional testimonials a mile long saying it is impossible that the part was repaired.

Maybe if there is apart number on the failed flex pipe and the replacement part was not OEM a distinction could be made. The part would have to be identified on the sales receipt to make this work.

I think judges are smart enough to see that the flex pipe wasn’t new.
My only concern is whether in a civil claim the OP can sue in the state he/she live in or needs to go to the state where the shop that installed the pipe operates. That’ll depend on individual state laws.

I would like to think that too, but it’s a year later and the part qualifies as old. I don’t think they can say without doubt that this was the original part if visual examination is the only way to tell. I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t think so.

A new flex pipe was installed…on the assembly line.

The welds look sloppy, I think they just repaired a crack. What is shown on the invoice?

I wonder what $1,000 was spent on.

“I wonder what $1,000 was spent on.”

Crabs and beer. Lots of crabs and beer.

Does the invoice state “Used” flex pipe? I’d believe that pipe was installed last year if it was cut from something in the scrap pile and installed on your car.

It sure doesn’t look like anything that was new in recent memory and the welds on that are horrible.

I’d be sure to bring in some statements from mechanic’s if you go to court with this.
I’d like to have faith that a good judge would see that this wasn’t new less than a year ago.
That judge may have been brought up in a family where he never experienced things like this.
He is not going to go out to his one year old car at recess and peek under it to compare, even though we wish that a judge would be that proactive.

He may have no Idea what he’s looking at and I’m sure that the shops lawyers will claim that the high temperatures of the exhaust, speed up the rusting process. Along with the gravitational pull of the moon and effects of global warming.