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Go Back   TDIClub Forums > TDI Model Specific Discussions Areas > VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD)

VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD) This is a general discussion about A4/MkIV Jetta (99.5-~2005), Golf(99.5-2006), and New Beetle(98-2006). Both VE and PD engines are covered here.

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Old March 3rd, 2018, 10:35   #1
mhintlian
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Frazier Park , Ca
TDI(s): 03 Golf GLS
Default Mk4 ALH Exhaust Downpipe

2003 Golf GLS Mk4 5 spd 369,000 miles, original owner. I rebuilt the engine and tranny 50,000 miles ago. Kept the original exhaust system. It appears that upon start up that exhaust fumes are leaking out of the flex part of the downpipes. Upon searching for a replacement downpipe there are numerous available. ID Parts, my trusted parts supplier, has a downpipes with a catalyst that has a disclaimer that the catalyst does not meet the peoples socialist republic of California standards. However, the "smog check" for a TDI is just a plug into the "D" plug under the dash, no exhaust gas analyzer up the exhaust pipe. So if I get the downpipe with the catalyst from ID Parts what is the probability that my vehicle will not pass the "smog check"? Or If I replace the downpipes with one that does not have a catalyst, will that effect the readiness reading? I still have the EGR connected and have no plans of removing it. Everything else is stock.

Any and all replies are truly appreciated.

Mhintlian
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 11:06   #2
maxmoo
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Location: Lakefield, Ontario, Canada
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First off, I know nothing about Calif. emisions testing.

Here in Ontario, Canada the emisions test only checks for fault and rediness codes.
Deleteing the cat will not trigger any codes on ALH vehicles.

We have been using 2.5 inch catless downpipes from various venders for quiet a few years now.
I find it helps milage and performance slightly and it does lower exhaust gas temp significantly.
"Buzzken" makes a reasonably priced 2.5" dp that steps down to OE dia so you can easily connect to your original exhaust.
That way you can easily add a "cat back" 2.5" exhaust later if desired/needed.

http://www.fixmyvw.com/mk4-tdi-stain...s-bew-and-alh/
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 11:59   #3
tyberesk
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Location: Burlington, Vermont
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Just recently dealt with this, but in Denver, Colorado (which is now following California rules). Any modification between between turbo and outlet of cat must be OEM. I had to pull out my buzzken downpipe and cat and replace with OEM when I moved here as I failed the visual inspection (even though I passed the opacity tests). Lucky for diesels in CO, a replacement used OEM downpipe/cat was an acceptable loophole.

Edit: Catback exhaust modifications are allowed and not under scrutiny here. Also, universal cats (like a genereric magnaflows) are no longer being accepted here.

Last edited by tyberesk; March 3rd, 2018 at 12:02.
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 12:40   #4
BobnOH
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Location: central Ohio
Fuel Economy: 50/45/35
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Interesting. Here in Ohio they can't sell used catalytic converters.
Can you keep your Catalytic Converter, just replace the down pipe.
Or can you just install this?
For the mileage, the trouble, the inspections, you may want to get under there and see exactly where it is leaking. Perhaps you can r+r back to life.
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 13:11   #5
Genesis
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Location: Niceville, FL
Fuel Economy: 53/48/42
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Are you sure out in CA they don't do a visual inspection to see if all the CARB-required bits are indeed present and stamped CARB-approved?

In a lot of areas they are visually inspecting as well nowdays as they've become wise to people being able to tune out the CEL or "readiness" bits not being set.
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Old March 3rd, 2018, 13:27   #6
ToxicDoc
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Join Date: Mar 2018
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TDI(s): 2001 Jetta
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If your vehicle is stock and needs all oem equipment, why not just price a downpipe/cat from VW? Get the part number and do comparison shopping
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Old March 4th, 2018, 07:14   #7
tyberesk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToxicDoc View Post
If your vehicle is stock and needs all oem equipment, why not just price a downpipe/cat from VW? Get the part number and do comparison shopping
I was quoted around 1200 for the oem downpipe/cat in PA and 1400 in CO. Until I found the used OEM cat loophole here, it was turning into a nightmare.
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Old March 4th, 2018, 09:23   #8
ToxicDoc
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tyberesk View Post
I was quoted around 1200 for the oem downpipe/cat in PA and 1400 in CO. Until I found the used OEM cat loophole here, it was turning into a nightmare.
Wow, that's some real legislative BS. My personal solution would have been to try to disguise an aftermarket unit as OEM lol.

Last edited by ToxicDoc; March 6th, 2018 at 22:51.
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Old March 5th, 2018, 21:18   #9
FasterXR4ti
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Why not just remove your stock down pipe, purchase a replacement flex section, take to a welding shop, and have them replace just the flex section. I do my own welding, so that's what I did.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 03:09   #10
burn_your_money
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I've heard the BEW ones last longer than the ALH. You could swap in the whole shebang, cat and all.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 07:17   #11
Prairie Chicken
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Mhintlian - +1 with BobnOH... I'm guessing most muffler shops will do that (at least saw several youtube vid's of that) for not too much $$$. I did mine not long ago - got the pipe at local parts store for $30. Had I known IDparts carried those could have saved a little more...

http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=485548

Last edited by Prairie Chicken; March 6th, 2018 at 07:21.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 15:23   #12
sawmilldon
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I just replaced my exhaust from my 2004 Wagon. I cut it in half about 3 feet past the cat.

Sitting in the shop, gathering dust.
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Old March 6th, 2018, 18:53   #13
flee
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I upgraded the downpipe on the 2002 and just sawed the cat to match the new diameter.
Then had it welded and it was better than new.
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