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Discussion Starter #1
i don't need one, i'm just curious if that day arises. The reason i ask, is yesterday i was with my brother in his 2004 toyota matrix and we went shopping at Walmart, came out and his matrix refused to start. I suspected it was either alternator or the starter as the car was completely dead, the headlights and radio worked tho.....and we replaced his battery with a new one about 2-3 weeks ago. I called around a dozen mechanical shops in my city for a new replacement starter and labour, got as high quotes from $300 Starter/ $90-100 labour.......$$350 combined bef0re tax, $120 Hour labour/$270 starter. Finally i called a shop i personally deal with the past 15 years and my hunch paid off: $296 for starter and labour plus taxes. $35 oil and filter charge and a $80 tranny fluid flush. I did not inquire about how much a new starter might be for my 06 Xtrail, but seeing how some parts are rediculously overpriced on the truck, i would expect something very expensive given this Matrix is a very common vehicle and based on a toyota corolla, the starter and labour Should be cheap. Heck, last time i changed out a starter, it was on my father's second family car back in 1989....that was on a 1984 Chevy Chevette. I think that was about $75? for the part and we installed it ourselves in 20 minutes or so. So have any of you replaced your starter? how about the alternator? Pricey or reasonable?
 

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Haven't checked with NAPA or NIssan but RockAuto has them in the 200 range. Its probably fairly easy to rebuild yours. Access is not too bad half and hour to an hour job I would think doing it yourself.
 

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He also has the possibility of getting a used one-- $ 28.70 for one at Kenny U pull. Just remember they are different on the manual versions. Like the alternator its probably used on other models as well, but uses a different bracket that you need to transfer, but I haven't researched it.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
i ended up taking my brother & Matrix down to the mechanic shop i have used on/off for the past 15 years, Discount Auto. The bill was $296 for the starter and labour, $35 oil change, $89 for transmission fluid flush. So far everything runs great. Eventually i may end up taking my Xtrail back to the same shop as i suspect my Cat converter has bit the dust. Fairly loud growly exhaust noises and rattling , buzzing noises that have developed in the past 4 months. No check engine lights, pick up and go is good, just the loud rattling buzzing sounds are annoying. So i suspect the Cat converter or may need a new muffler / pipes. Had the Xtrail up on the hoist back in Feb. at another shop to just see what we could tighten up to reduce the rattling from the exhaust area, the mechanic noticed the rusted on various parts of the exhaust system. We decided best not to touch anything at that time as connections ( to cat, muffler/ assorted muffler connections) were rusty fragile looking and for sure i would be paying a hefty bill.
 

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Actually it sounds like you need to remove the clamshell heat shield on the bottom catalytic converter underneath the car. If its not too bad and only the welds have broken you can clamp it with band clamps. Otherwise pull or cut it off. Just dont park on tall grass in the summer lol. Also the heat shield over the muffler is notorious for rusting loose and can make annoying rattles and sounds. Just rip that baby out of there. Check the different hanger clamps, I am sure more than one has rusted off. Those can be replaced with new wire ones welded on. Speedy Muffler charged me $10 per a couple of years ago for mine.The front hanger is for the catalytic converter is a bit hidden and needs to be rewelded to the bolt on bracket.
Another problem source on the X trail is the flange that connects the muffler pipe to the long resonator pipe. They tend to rust out at the connection and cause an exhaust leak. No codes will be set as its after your two converters, but you should notice some noise and possible loss of power. If so, have the flange ends of the two pipes cut off and a pipe over rewelded to connect the two pipes, and a support bracket rewelded. Probably cost about $80 but that will save you a lot of money compared to having to replace those two exhaust sections.
Based upon my experience with mine and having had all the above done to it and talked to the techs, the X trail exhaust is fairly thick gauge steel and unless its really rotted welds well. Just find a shop with a good welder and your exhaust can last a long time. All of mine is still original, albeit with repairs.

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Discussion Starter #9
Actually it sounds like you need to remove the clamshell heat shield on the bottom catalytic converter underneath the car. If its not too bad and only the welds have broken you can clamp it with band clamps. Otherwise pull or cut it off. Just dont park on tall grass in the summer lol. Also the heat shield over the muffler is notorious for rusting loose and can make annoying rattles and sounds. Just rip that baby out of there. Check the different hanger clamps, I am sure more than one has rusted off. Those can be replaced with new wire ones welded on. Speedy Muffler charged me $10 per a couple of years ago for mine.The front hanger is for the catalytic converter is a bit hidden and needs to be rewelded to the bolt on bracket.
Another problem source on the X trail is the flange that connects the muffler pipe to the long resonator pipe. They tend to rust out at the connection and cause an exhaust leak. No codes will be set as its after your two converters, but you should notice some noise and possible loss of power. If so, have the flange ends of the two pipes cut off and a pipe over rewelded to connect the two pipes, and a support bracket rewelded. Probably cost about $80 but that will save you a lot of money compared to having to replace those two exhaust sections.
Based upon my experience with mine and having had all the above done to it and talked to the techs, the X trail exhaust is fairly thick gauge steel and unless its really rotted welds well. Just find a shop with a good welder and your exhaust can last a long time. All of mine is still original, albeit with repairs.

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thanks for the advice. I will be taking my Xtrail into Muffler Man, a well known muffler exhaust/mechanical shop with 50 years of operation. They have excellent Yelp/Google reviews of very happy customers getting simple, sturdy Weld repairs versus being upsold for expensive, uneccessary muffler/exhaust parts replacements. I'm not only hearing the rattling/buzzing sounds underneath my truck, but the fairly loud sounds of a bad Cat. Last night on my way home, i went over about 3 speed bumps and i could hear a faint bump/clanging noise i had not heard before. So it needs to be inspected by a muffler shop and i really hope i can get away with the simpler, cheaper welding work if possible.
 
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