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Old 11-08-2001, 09:31 AM   #1
AC Lerok
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Default CE lights with Borla/Random/Stromung (Cobb Stage 2) setup

i know there are probably a few people now running this setup (anyone who purchased the Cobb Stage 2 power package anyway), so i figured i'd get a thread going about what we encounter.

when Cobb received their shipment of Random Technology cats (finally finishing off my Stage 2 package), i was excited. Josh's words were "there is a slight chance of a CE light, but the cars we've tested have not thrown any codes yet." i had a chance to not take it, but i did, so it's totally on me now . . . i was warned.

so i get everything installed and for a couple days, no CE light.

fabulous.

then, on the drive home from work, i get one. i was kinda expecting it, so i didn't freak. drove home, reset the ECU, no more light. drove to work the next morning (50 miles) and no light. but again, on my drive home, i got lit up.

if it's the thermal inefficiency code (as i'm willing to bet it is), then the pattern makes sense . . . my drive to work starts out through neighborhoods and doesn't hit the highway until the last 9 miles of the trip. the drive home starts off on I-95 . . . so the headers aren't really hot when i hit the highway, and they stay cool because i'm doing 70-75. 3 miles into the trip, easy on the throttle . . . the light comes on. almost in the exact same spot on the road, too.

i purchased header wrap from a local hot rod shop (the owner nearly dropped his chaw when he heard the Borla/Random/Stromung combo) and i plan to install it on Friday evening. i'll let you know if that helps.
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Old 11-08-2001, 11:19 AM   #2
ImprezaGuy
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Default it should i hope

I hope it does. When i had just my header and was getting CE lights fairly often, i bought some of the wrap and wrapped things up. After that ( the last 4 months) i have had no problems. Let me knwo about this, tsince i have my random cats and stroghmung comming in in the next few days. Thank you.

Will you be wrapping up the cats as well? Should you do that as well?

Andrew Ogden

Imprezaguy@kc.rr.com
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Old 11-08-2001, 11:40 AM   #3
tmat3
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Default

And I can bet you anything that the CE code is PO 0420 Catalyst Inefficiency. Exhaust temperature is too low for the catalytic converter to work efficiently. It ususally pops up on low throttle at cruising 55mph, a few minutes after you start the engine.

I got that with a broken exhaust gasket which sits between the midpipe and rear-section.
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Old 11-08-2001, 11:47 AM   #4
tmat3
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Damnit, I should start reading other people's threads more carefully. Everything I wrote everything that's been described.
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Old 11-08-2001, 01:25 PM   #5
cminch
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thermotec wrap cured my CEL's. I have the Borla Headers, stock cats, and the Borla Catback, GanzFlow too. I've had the wrap on for a month now and no more CEL. I used to always get them at 55-60 on the highway as well.

My advice would be to seal (hi temp spray) the headers before wrapping them (if you're going to be driving through snow). I didn't do it to mine and am fearful that slushy snow and ohio salt will turn my pipes to mush with the wrap. I'll probably throw the stock pipes on for the winter or undo the wrap have the pipes coated, then put em back on.

Either way something to think about depending on where you live.

-craig
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Old 11-08-2001, 02:02 PM   #6
AC Lerok
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Default

the Borla headers are T-304 Stainless, is it worth it to worry about rust?

i'm glad to see someone else mention ThemoTec, i bought a roll of the regular wrap last night, i read the instructions and they want you to paint over the wrap with a sealer (that they sell, of course) after the wrap is cured . . . . has anyone bothered with this step? or maybe someone has used something else besides that specific product?

i also didn't buy their pipe clamp things, i'm gonna go to Home Depot for those.
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Old 11-08-2001, 02:07 PM   #7
fabulous12
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AC,

just wondering what local shop you know of in philly... im in philly too and was looking for a good place but i dont really know of any.
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Old 11-08-2001, 02:24 PM   #8
cminch
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Default long...

Yeah I know it's stainless but moisture and salt can't be good for any kind of metal regardless of quality. I'm willing to bet that Borla won't warranty wrapped headers either, which is ironic because they have no problem selling pipes that cause CEL's. These things should've come from the factory in some sort of hi temp coating. Anyway...

I bought the Thermotec spray and autozone clamps. The spray went on afterwards. Here's the breakdown of the process I used. It may or may not be the best way but it worked fine for me.

1. Jack car up and set on jackstands

2. sprayed wrap with a water spray bottle as I wrapped the headers. (a lot easier than dipping it) clamp down the first piece work backwards
- I probably should've taken the headers off, but I'm lazy and just wrapped them attached.

3. wrap wrap wrap, get a sore neck, then clamp the end near the cats, turn the car on and watch em smoke "cure" as the wrap dries.

4. spray with the Thermotec spray. I used ripped up cereal boxes to mask off the overspray areas.


I also read somewhere to keep the wrap away from the collector flanges right off the block, so I started wrapping about 10 - 12 inches away. I guess it gets hot and if you wrap too close you increase the chances of cracking the flanges.

It'll stink a lot at first too.

Hope this helps

-craig
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Old 11-08-2001, 02:45 PM   #9
wcbjr
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Default

Stop driving home.
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Old 11-08-2001, 03:05 PM   #10
AC Lerok
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Default

wcbjr, you sound like my boss.

fabulous, i'm 100% DIY so far, with the exception of my headers and cat, which Midas did (not without being coerced, however). you hear good and bad things about every shop, i know TRi Tuning has a local following. Rallispec has closed it's doors, if there are any others around Philly, my apologies.

cminch, that process totally makes sense, thanks for the spraybottle hint. where did you buy the wrap and spray? Pep Boys didn't have either, there is an ABC i can try for the spray and there is a Mechanics auto parts i can hit, too.
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:02 PM   #11
Squeege
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Default CEL with Brola header

You guys have all read the "for offroad use only" clause that goes with the header, right? I have one, and the CEL is on. I have given up on the ECU resets after about the fourth time. I am undecided on my upgrade to the Brullen header/cat (my name is on the list for pre-orders). They have upped the thickness of the pipes and ceramic coated them also. They claim no CEL and passes emissions. Waiting for the call for deposit.

Luigi
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:10 PM   #12
AC Lerok
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Default

the way i read it, the "offroad use" clause is for California emissions (that's the way it reads on the Borla site, too).

Squeege, before you give up on the Borlas, take the time to wrap them, it sounds like it's an easy fix that actually works.
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:17 PM   #13
Squeege
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Default Bye-bye Borla...?

Yeah, I am considering it, but I don't want to hassle with it. I also want the hi-flow cat that is included with the Brullen setup. I don't think there's a whole lot more power, maybe just some more top end. I drove a car with the full Brullen system and it did not seem noticeably faster but had a much racier sound compared to the lumpy sound of the Borla. The "guarantee" of no CEL and emissions test pass is what appeals to me as much as any performance improvement. I think I am talking myself into it.

Anyone interested in a 3-month-old Borla generation 3 header?

Luigi
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:29 PM   #14
AC Lerok
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Default

you know about guarantees, like in Tommy Boy . . .

"i can crap in a box, slap a guarantee on it, and all i've sold you is a guaranteed piece of *****"

i don't think anyone can truthfully offer a 100% no CE light guarantee, but if Brullen's willing to do so, you can bet that the materials/R&D cost is going to fall on the consumer.

and if that guarantee means that you'll be part of the guinea pig process (kinda like what Borla did with the first two generations of headers), that would suck.
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:37 PM   #15
cminch
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Default

AC Lerok glad to help. I got the Thermotec products from Summit Racing. (40 min. drive from my house). You can order it all online though http://www.summitracing.com Do a product search for "THE" and you will see all of their products. I got the 2in x 50 ft. wrap and used almost all of it (I was very liberal in the overlaps though).

Squeege, try the wrap before you sell the Borla's. So far wrapping the headers has been the best mod I've ever done. Fixed a problem and provided a few extra ponies, all for about 55$. It also altered the exhaust tone, which is what you liked about the Brullen's.

If you autocross and get the Brullen's you'll bump yourself right out of STS/STR and into Street Prepared with those high-flo cats.

-just an fyi

-craig
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:44 PM   #16
Squeege
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Default Guarantees?

I am willing to pay for a good product, one that will not cause me headaches in the future. Brullen gives me the impression that they genuinely want to make the product as good as they can (within reason of course). I guess we will see...
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:50 PM   #17
AC Lerok
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Default

oh yeah, before i forget . . .

do NOT wrap the cat!

from what i hear, bad things happen, including ruining the scrubber block. then you fail emissions. that's never fun.
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:51 PM   #18
Squeege
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Default Wrapping.

I remember paying about $75 CDN for that thermotec wrap for my turbo protege a few years back. That was without the sealer. I will look into it again, but if it's gonna cost me $100 or more, I may not bother.

Cminch,
I would love to eliminate the CEL and get more power & a nicer sound. How did you determine your are getting a few more ponies? Any measurements?

Thanks
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:55 PM   #19
cminch
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I totally agree with you. Brullen seems to be going that extra step. I hope it all works out for the customer's benefit though, and not empty promises. If you get the Brullen's and still haven't sold the Borla's, you should take your car to a dyno and see the difference. I'm curious to know which has more oomph.

edit: to answer your question, No I didn't do any measurements. Wish I could, I'm spouting off butt dyno impulses, and going from the remarks on the Thermotec box. (so take it with a grain of salt)

-craig
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Old 11-08-2001, 04:57 PM   #20
jagcars26
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Ok guys,time fr my stupid question,,,,Ive never had a check engine lite till i put on the high flow cat from Cobb(i was warned also).Im using the stock headers fr now with Stromung mid and rear dual tip.I put the cat on and after a 100 miles or so CEL,,did a reset,lite out.100 more miles same deal.Reset yesterday,did some serious driven threw the twistys today,no lite so far.
Car is definately pullin faster with the cat and the high end has increased some.
My question is ,,,when the check engine lite comes on,,and im sure its the rear 02 sensor throwin that code,is the ecu tryin to compensate in any way(rich,lean,retard,whatever)to make the car run crappier??Or is it just ok to run around wth the CEL on al the time.I CAN get rid of the lite.
Thanks
Rudy
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Old 11-08-2001, 05:02 PM   #21
Squeege
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Default Me too

I would also like to know what people think about leaving the CEL on. The car seems to run fine as if there are no changes.
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Old 11-08-2001, 05:06 PM   #22
cminch
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well, I drove around for awhile with a CEL. I did notice that after a prolonged period of time the car felt different, about 2 weeks. My guess was the the ECU went into a limp (safety) mode or something. I reset the ECU, no more light, back to normal. Not sure if that's even possible, but I swear the car was just chugging one morning and it was gone after the reset.
(can't express enought that this is a guess)

I did become obsessive compulsive while I was getting CEL's. I started tracking my fuel and trying to determine if one particular brand of octane was the cause, and how much mpg I could expect with the CEL. I've yet to analyze the data, and my test subject has since been "cured".

-craig
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Old 11-08-2001, 08:24 PM   #23
wistful
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well, my CEL has been a permanent fixture of my Scooby since.. August. I get the same mileage. The car feels somewhat the same. Only thing is, my S-AFC doesn't work because the CE light is on. (that's just a guess, sounds reasonable though!) In any case, I will wrap my headers as well come spring time.

Don
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Old 11-08-2001, 10:10 PM   #24
jagcars26
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Well,,my Cel came back on tonight goin to dinner,,car seems the same so far.Iwish someone had the definitive answer on what the ecu does over time when the cel lite comes on fr the 02 sensor.
Ok more dumb questions,Should there be some kinda gasket tween the Random tech cat and the midpipe??I didnt get one from Cobb if there is.Theres that donut type gasket on the stock cats but on th e Random cat it just has a flare in the piping.(kinda male to female)
And if your thinken about the high flow cat, be prepared fr noise my car drones at low speeds,the performance is there but so is the noise.A resonator in the midpipe will solve this for me.
Thanks
Rudy
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Old 11-08-2001, 10:49 PM   #25
yamarocket630
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Yeah, I'll buy your borla's if they're in good shape. Email me. jirion@chartermi.net
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