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Topic # 142773 24-Mar-2014 13:55 Send private message

Hey guys, just took these pics of the underbody of my car (04 corolla).

What do you guys think ? Should I be concerned ?    This car was in a snowy area when it was in Japan before it was imported (i could tell as there are 4 snow tyres fitted to it).














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  Reply # 1011786 24-Mar-2014 14:05 Send private message

The exhaust pipe I wouldn't be tooo worried about, but those suspension components look a bit nasty.  You're probably best to take it to a panel beater, and see what they think of it.

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  Reply # 1011787 24-Mar-2014 14:06 Send private message

It doesn't look like the exhaust will be around for more than a few years, but apart from that, unless you go riding in sea water, like up 90mile beach on the weekends, I'd not be concerned at all. When you replace the exhaust, pay the extra for stainless and it won't be a problem for longer then the average kiwi keeps a car.

If you do go riding on 90mile beach or through fresh cement on the weekends, place a garden sprinkler on the lawn and drive over it to rinse out the underbody a bit.

Remember, it is already 10 years old.

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  Reply # 1011789 24-Mar-2014 14:07

Are you serious? If there is any significant rust maybe a close up showing it.



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  Reply # 1011797 24-Mar-2014 14:14 Send private message

gundar: It doesn't look like the exhaust will be around for more than a few years, but apart from that, unless you go riding in sea water, like up 90mile beach on the weekends, I'd not be concerned at all. When you replace the exhaust, pay the extra for stainless and it won't be a problem for longer then the average kiwi keeps a car.

If you do go riding on 90mile beach or through fresh cement on the weekends, place a garden sprinkler on the lawn and drive over it to rinse out the underbody a bit.

Remember, it is already 10 years old.


how much is a stainless steel exhaust ? Does it include the long pipe or just the muff? If it's in the thousand then i'll just wait a few years and flip it off. 

The AA guy say there's no reason the car wouldn't last 5 years or longer in the current condition and that I should not worry about the bolt-on parts like exhaust etc since they'll hold up well and only the structural parts need to be watched closely. 

Car was imported last year. So the NZTA compliance test which is very invasive and strict should've picked it up tho right ?

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  Reply # 1011798 24-Mar-2014 14:15 Send private message

Snow + Japan = high level of salt content - they heavily salt the roads in Japan during the winters, and of course salt is not rusts friend. 

A white undercoat on an import is apparently quite common , but black is usually to try and hide things.

Get it checked out.




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  Reply # 1011804 24-Mar-2014 14:32 Send private message

coolcat21:
gundar: It doesn't look like the exhaust will be around for more than a few years, but apart from that, unless you go riding in sea water, like up 90mile beach on the weekends, I'd not be concerned at all. When you replace the exhaust, pay the extra for stainless and it won't be a problem for longer then the average kiwi keeps a car.

If you do go riding on 90mile beach or through fresh cement on the weekends, place a garden sprinkler on the lawn and drive over it to rinse out the underbody a bit.

Remember, it is already 10 years old.


how much is a stainless steel exhaust ? Does it include the long pipe or just the muff? If it's in the thousand then i'll just wait a few years and flip it off. 

The AA guy say there's no reason the car wouldn't last 5 years or longer in the current condition and that I should not worry about the bolt-on parts like exhaust etc since they'll hold up well and only the structural parts need to be watched closely. 

Car was imported last year. So the NZTA compliance test which is very invasive and strict should've picked it up tho right ?


Last time I replaced an exhaust, it included everything and was under a grand. The exhaust quite literally outlasted the car - having said that, costs vary by model.

While the pics aren't the best way to determine rust depth, I'd say, from what is there it's not a worry for the immediate future. A hole in an exhaust changes the way the car sounds and makes a difference on power and fuel consumption and in my opinion, those are things (amongst others) people should be mentally tracking constantly because they are symptomatic of teh kinds of problems that are real cheap to fix if caught early.

I stand to correction, but in NZ I think only a small hole or number of holes may be patched before a warrant check.

I'm no mechanic, but I have owned many low cost cars and motorcycles in my time for years on end and to date never failed a warrant, been in a life threatening collision or had a major breakdown or loss (of asset or life). I also do most of my own work without splitting the block.

If it's a concern, check it out every few months until you have a good idea of the rate of decay.



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  Reply # 1011809 24-Mar-2014 14:41 Send private message

gundar:
coolcat21:
gundar: It doesn't look like the exhaust will be around for more than a few years, but apart from that, unless you go riding in sea water, like up 90mile beach on the weekends, I'd not be concerned at all. When you replace the exhaust, pay the extra for stainless and it won't be a problem for longer then the average kiwi keeps a car.

If you do go riding on 90mile beach or through fresh cement on the weekends, place a garden sprinkler on the lawn and drive over it to rinse out the underbody a bit.

Remember, it is already 10 years old.


how much is a stainless steel exhaust ? Does it include the long pipe or just the muff? If it's in the thousand then i'll just wait a few years and flip it off. 

The AA guy say there's no reason the car wouldn't last 5 years or longer in the current condition and that I should not worry about the bolt-on parts like exhaust etc since they'll hold up well and only the structural parts need to be watched closely. 

Car was imported last year. So the NZTA compliance test which is very invasive and strict should've picked it up tho right ?


Last time I replaced an exhaust, it included everything and was under a grand. The exhaust quite literally outlasted the car - having said that, costs vary by model.

While the pics aren't the best way to determine rust depth, I'd say, from what is there it's not a worry for the immediate future. A hole in an exhaust changes the way the car sounds and makes a difference on power and fuel consumption and in my opinion, those are things (amongst others) people should be mentally tracking constantly because they are symptomatic of teh kinds of problems that are real cheap to fix if caught early.

I stand to correction, but in NZ I think only a small hole or number of holes may be patched before a warrant check.

I'm no mechanic, but I have owned many low cost cars and motorcycles in my time for years on end and to date never failed a warrant, been in a life threatening collision or had a major breakdown or loss (of asset or life). I also do most of my own work without splitting the block.

If it's a concern, check it out every few months until you have a good idea of the rate of decay.


Yea I'll keep an eye on things.  And i'll get a new WOF soon on top of the current WOF which expires next March, just to make sure. 

The fuel consumption I'm getting is 14 KM/L as reported by the MFD on the dashboard. (probably 13.7 in actuality). 
Car sounds normal and power is normal. However when the engine is on and you get close to the exhaust, you can see it jiggle abit from left to right.  Is that normal ? I'm not a car guy lol. 

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  Reply # 1011811 24-Mar-2014 14:45 Send private message

coolcat21:  i'll get a new WOF soon on top of the current WOF which expires next March, just to make sure.


Don't bother IMO.  Waste of time as they won't do a thorough check.  You would be better off taking it to a panel beater to just get their take on whether the rust on the underbody/suspension is more than just surface rust.

 The fuel consumption I'm getting is 14 KM/L as reported by the MFD on the dashboard. (probably 13.7 in actuality). Car sounds normal and power is normal. However when the engine is on and you get close to the exhaust, you can see it jiggle abit from left to right.  Is that normal ? I'm not a car guy lol. 


Perfectly normal yes, it is on rubber mounts to allow movement.  Honestly until it gets holes in it, which you will hear, I'd just leave it be.

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  Reply # 1011821 24-Mar-2014 14:53

Exhausts don't rust out internally as quickly as they did when leaded petrol was used. NZ made exhausts rusted even faster because the tubing had a welded seam that was the first to go.



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  Reply # 1011825 24-Mar-2014 15:05 Send private message

gundar: It doesn't look like the exhaust will be around for more than a few years, but apart from that, unless you go riding in sea water, like up 90mile beach on the weekends, I'd not be concerned at all. When you replace the exhaust, pay the extra for stainless and it won't be a problem for longer then the average kiwi keeps a car.

If you do go riding on 90mile beach or through fresh cement on the weekends, place a garden sprinkler on the lawn and drive over it to rinse out the underbody a bit.

Remember, it is already 10 years old.


I used to clean the underbody of my previous car whenever I wash the car. Just by spraying it with water.  But this got me to thinking.

It's all bare metal/steel down there, and if we spray with water and left it out to dry in the air...wouldn't that promote rust or make rust worse ? 


One more question: the condenser infront of the radiator has bugs and stones inbetween the grill , some of the grills are bent (like most 10 year old cars out there) ...should i blast it with water or let it be ?

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  Reply # 1011827 24-Mar-2014 15:08 Send private message

Everything rusts eventually




Apologies for poor typing standards when on Samsung S4 [swype's fault]/iPad 2 Wifi[too slow to use!]

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  Reply # 1011828 24-Mar-2014 15:09 Send private message

coolcat21: One more question: the condenser infront of the radiator has bugs and stones inbetween the grill , some of the grills are bent (like most 10 year old cars out there) ...should i blast it with water or let it be ?


You could gently pick out the bigger stones or bugs but gentle is the key word - it'll be aluminium which is very soft, water blasting it would bend the fins.\

Also, there shouldn't be any bare metal (aside from the exhaust pipe) but I wouldn't bother washing the underside too often unless you go offroad / gravel a lot

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  Reply # 1011864 24-Mar-2014 15:32 Send private message

coolcat21: The fuel consumption I'm getting is 14 KM/L as reported by the MFD on the dashboard. (probably 13.7 in actuality). 


OT: Wow. I need a more efficient car. My V6 Commodore uses nearly twice that




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  Reply # 1011904 24-Mar-2014 16:16 Send private message

Exhausts last a hell of a lot longer than they used to do.  The turning point was with cars that have never had leaded fuel through them.
I'd ditch the snow tyres asap - chuck them out.  Even if you stick cheapo chinese LingLongs on them, they'll be much safer than snow tyres on NZ roads.
I can't see the rust in the photos either.  If it's a recent import, if there was an issue then if it was a concern, it should have been picked up when it was inspected when it came into the country.



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  Reply # 1011908 24-Mar-2014 16:22 Send private message

Fred99: Exhausts last a hell of a lot longer than they used to do.  The turning point was with cars that have never had leaded fuel through them.
I'd ditch the snow tyres asap - chuck them out.  Even if you stick cheapo chinese LingLongs on them, they'll be much safer than snow tyres on NZ roads.
I can't see the rust in the photos either.  If it's a recent import, if there was an issue then if it was a concern, it should have been picked up when it was inspected when it came into the country.



If you see the fuel tank, there will be little rust spots on them.  The last picture, just above the orange cable thingy, you can see rust spots covered with black paint ?

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