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2005 C230, 1987 300E
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My 1987 300E had the original rear muffler fall off yesterday due to rusting at a weld joint. There is a significant cost difference between installing an OEM replacement muffler myself, and getting a universal muffler installed at the local chop shop. So here is my question: If I have an aftermarket universal muffler installed, will I have any significant performance or mileage degradation over putting in an OEM part? The car has 144,000 miles and I am not keeping it showroom ready....just want to keep it running smoothly and safely for another 100K! Anyone have any opinions or experience here?
 

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Go to a shop where they will cut the bad portion of the pipe and replace it--weld it with a new section of pipe. I did that about 4 months ago--about $75.
 

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About a dozen 1988, 1989, 1990, and 1991 sedans, wagons, 4Matics and 1 coupe
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My 1987 300E had the original rear muffler fall off yesterday due to rusting at a weld joint. There is a significant cost difference between installing an OEM replacement muffler myself, and getting a universal muffler installed at the local chop shop. So here is my question: If I have an aftermarket universal muffler installed, will I have any significant performance or mileage degradation over putting in an OEM part? The car has 144,000 miles and I am not keeping it showroom ready....just want to keep it running smoothly and safely for another 100K! Anyone have any opinions or experience here?
Some of your statements are contradictory, but first:

No, you won't notice any mileage or performance differences if you get an el-crappo universal muffler fit at a local shop.

Then you say the car has 144k miles on it now, you don't want to keep it in showroom condition, but you want to keep it running for another 100k miles!

Well an Eberspaecher muffler (the best) cost me under $200 online when I bought one for my 88 sedan a little while back. It will last me 10 years and would last even longer in CA. No universal fit made-from-recycled-soup-can muffler that costs $19.95 will do that.

So you have to decide... Buy the crappy muffler and replace it in 2 years or buy the Eberspaecher and forget anbout it for 10+.
 
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