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  1. #1
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    Defective AR Design Downpipes? Looking for opinions.

    So I purchased AR Design Downpipes with Race Cat's about 20 months ago, paid big money $1250, but paid the money because I didn't want to have to deal with emission issues etc.


    When I purchased them, the website stated:


    Lifetime warranty against any manufacturing defects given to original owner.


    NO CEL on pre 29.2 Progman cars - post 29.2/MSD81 testing is currently being completed, but due to the superior quality of the cats, we expect no issues.


    I was post 29.2, but had it sounded like they would be find and figured if they didn't work I would just return them.


    I installed and they worked flawlessly, no CEL's got through emissions the first year, all good, car has not had a software update since before the downpipes were installed (2008 335i).


    About a month ago, I get a CEL and both rear O2's are showing cat inefficiency codes, so much for the superior design of the cats.


    Now I look at their website and they have figured out this is an issue, so it says:


    Lifetime warranty against any manufacturing defects given to original owner.

    NO CEL on pre 29.2 cars. Post 29.2 cars may require a DP Fix.


    So now I have had to add DPFix for $100 to get rid of the codes and get it through the emissions test this year.


    My big issue is that I consider this a defect - they worked when purchased and when I bought them the disclaimer did not say they would not work like it does now, but over time they lose efficiency and no longer perform as represented or as they did the first year.


    I contacted Andrew and they don't seem to take the issue seriously. Had I known they would not work I would have just paid $450 less for catless and bought the downpipe fix and been done with it. Andrew asked what I wanted and I asked for that instead, give me the difference back and send me working catless downpipes (since I already have the DPFix). Seems the only catted options is some crazy expensive race cats that make no sense pricewise and I wouldn't expect as a replacement.




    So my question is, am I asking too much andwould you consider them a defective product that they should stand behind with their lifetime warranty and address the issue? I just feel like I was taken for the extra money and oversold a product that is underperforming.


    Andrew has not responded to my last 2 emails in week and a half now, so it seems he is no longer interested in working with me, that is why I have decided to post and see if I am expecting too much or if you think AR Design should stand behind my purchase?


    Thanks for reading,


    Rob
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

  2. #2
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    Key here is they said "expect." No definite statement, therefore they technically don't need to do anything because this isn't a manufacture defect. That said, I think it would be nice of them if they sent you a free DP fix.

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    Hardware and software are two different things
    Cobb tuned, spec2+, wavetrac, DCI, ARdp's, AA fmic, forge DV's, M3 links & Sways, bbs lm's, bunch of exterior mods, and one happy BMW driver

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    I had the same experience with CPE. The catless dps eventually throw a cel. I had four sets with different cats as I was the tester for them. Eventually they all threw a cel. 3-6 weeks. It was good enough for me to time it and pass emissions w/o a dp fix. That's what you're paying for. Set your tune to stage 1 or stock, drive it long enough to set readiness and pass emissions. Go back to stage 2 - that's why you bought dps anyway.
    Catless dps are stupid. They don't work and the manufacturers all know this. They sell them for people that aren't ready to go catless or don't like the smell. The market forces them to say that they won't throw a cel b/c that's what people care about. They install them, get past it and when the cel comes they figure out a solution. Short attention span...
    I don't think you've got a case for money back but you do have a case for new cats as in you send your dps back and they weld in new cats. That'll cost AR about $150-200. That's about what you could expect if you're looking for cash.

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    The issue is even if they put in new cats, they will just fail again, so they would have to do it every year for the lifetime of hem and not to mention the cost of removal and reinstall which is more than the cost of the cats.
    Since I now know they can never work, I would be happy if the weld in just a piece of pipe and refund the cost of the cats as the cats are worthless basically!
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by E90Company Click here to enlarge
    Key here is they said "expect." No definite statement, therefore they technically don't need to do anything because this isn't a manufacture defect. That said, I think it would be nice of them if they sent you a free DP fix.
    Technically they implied they would work and they did for a bit, then they stopped doing what was implied constituting a defect. The warranty of merchantabilty states that the goods must conform reasonably to the buyers expectation (in this case, the expectation is that cats would actually do what they are supposed to, so no inefficiency codes), otherwise they have to be sold as as-is or with faults, the fault is now clearly listed on their website, but was not when I bought them it was stated we expect no issues. So technically they are defected based on how they were sold.
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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    Race Cats = Shorter life span --> not a DD/Reg Road Use Solution. Honestly they're not worth the additional cost over the catless systems.
    COBB AP ProTune by Bren of ///Bren Tuning
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    "The moment money becomes your motivation, you are immediately not as good as someone who is motivated by passion and internal will." -A. Senna

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    Very true - not worth the money, if they are not going to let the car pass emissions and you need to do a downpipe fix anyway, they are totally pointless over catless as I basically just paid more for a restriction in my downpipes!

    I have an E93 sunny day car, so 18 months might seem like a while, but that is only 4000 miles of driving - most people would have them fail within 6 months of normal use!
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by marcvtec Click here to enlarge
    Hardware and software are two different things
    Exactly, it isn't a manufacturing defect.

    This guy is making a mountain out of a molehill. Get the DP fix and move on with your life.
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  10. #10
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Exactly, it isn't a manufacturing defect.

    This guy is making a mountain out of a molehill. Get the DP fix and move on with your life.
    If they worked for 18 months without any issues and the software has not changed, then it means the catalyst is losing efficiency over time which would make it defective in my book.

    Sure it isn't the end of the world, I have to pay $100 for a downpipe fix (to get through emissions, but now it is recommended not to leave it in) and 200 for a cantool to auto clear the codes to make up for the fact that the catalysts are not working. The issue is I paid a huge premium as did many others for these downpipes and have now spent another 300 to make up for their short comings. So now I have $1500 in a set of downpipes and required additions when I could have the same thing for $900 with their catless downpipes.

    Of course with their current disclaimer they are working as designed, but with the original info when I purchased they are no longer performing as claimed = defective.

    This is a community and I just asked for opinions and want to make sure others don't waste their hard earned money on a product that did not perform as sold, if this is too much of a mountain for you, please go comment elsewhere.
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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    I think anybody would've known that sport cats with regular use would fail pretty quickly (and probably not even let you pass emissions), regardless of the platform
    COBB AP ProTune by Bren of ///Bren Tuning
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  12. #12
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Roadkillrob Click here to enlarge
    If they worked for 18 months without any issues and the software has not changed, then it means the catalyst is losing efficiency over time which would make it defective in my book.
    What race cat won't lose efficiency or eventually trigger a CEL if you go too low in cell count? How is that a product defect? If you chose a race cat for performance you might as well just go catless.

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Roadkillrob Click here to enlarge
    This is a community and I just asked for opinions and want to make sure others don't waste their hard earned money on a product that did not perform as sold, if this is too much of a mountain for you, please go comment elsewhere.
    And you're getting opinions back.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    What race cat won't lose efficiency or eventually trigger a CEL if you go too low in cell count? How is that a product defect? If you chose a race cat for performance you might as well just go catless.

    And you're getting opinions back.

    Unfortunately it is the first time I have tried race cats and did not realize they would be useless after 4000 miles and certainly it was not stated anywhere when they sold me the product - lesson learned!

    As for choosing a race cat for performance, you are right I regret it and should have just gone catless, now I just have a restriction that I paid extra for that serves no purpose!

    Yes I am definitely getting opinions back and I do appreciate them either way.

    I don't understand what purpose they serve and why they would even sell them since they lose efficiency so quickly, maybe there are a few places that still do a sniffer test for emissions and they could work for that I guess, but it seems most of the world just plugs into OBDII now and checks readiness in which case this product is no better than catless.

    Oh well, lesson learned I guess, I will just be unhappy and like Sticky said one time I recall, if I am not happy with someone I spend money with, I will find somewhere else to spend it!

    Rob
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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    OP, You can't fault AR or any manufacturer for you don't doing any due diligence/research prior to purchase.

    Did you ever consider that perhaps your Giac tune is running a hair rich, and contributed to the early failure of your aftermarket high flow cats?

  15. #15
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Roadkillrob Click here to enlarge
    Unfortunately it is the first time I have tried race cats and did not realize they would be useless after 4000 miles and certainly it was not stated anywhere when they sold me the product - lesson learned!

    As for choosing a race cat for performance, you are right I regret it and should have just gone catless, now I just have a restriction that I paid extra for that serves no purpose!

    Yes I am definitely getting opinions back and I do appreciate them either way.

    I don't understand what purpose they serve and why they would even sell them since they lose efficiency so quickly, maybe there are a few places that still do a sniffer test for emissions and they could work for that I guess, but it seems most of the world just plugs into OBDII now and checks readiness in which case this product is no better than catless.

    Oh well, lesson learned I guess, I will just be unhappy and like Sticky said one time I recall, if I am not happy with someone I spend money with, I will find somewhere else to spend it!

    Rob
    I think the purpose is for a middle ground but as you learned you will only pass emissions with them for a short time. So, it can be a temp solution for some.

    My advice is to simply go catless especially with a lot of states moving to electronic based emissions testing.

    It's ok, lesson learned, no point worrying about spilled milk.
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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    I think the purpose is for a middle ground but as you learned you will only pass emissions with them for a short time. So, it can be a temp solution for some.

    My advice is to simply go catless especially with a lot of states moving to electronic based emissions testing.

    It's ok, lesson learned, no point worrying about spilled milk.
    I already purchased the DPFix, but then learned it isn't good to leave it installed, so bought the BMS CanTool to take care of the pesky dash light, but that is just personal preference to not have to see the light come on (and I like the gauge sweep the cantool does).

    Guess I will live with them for now and maybe upgrade at some point to full catless.

    Thanks everyone for letting me vent a bit at least!

    Rob
    2008 E93 MHD, HPF IC, Injen Intake
    2016 X5 35i JB Stage 1
    2013 C63 Eurocharged V6

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