Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Warranty honored on Raceland header

I found out last night from their website that they offer a 2 year warranty on materials and workmanship of their products. That was somewhat reassuring, but I was a still skeptical about a relative newcomer to the US market and a company that seems to have a lot of presence on eBay. My skepticism has been assuaged a bit.

I received an e-mail response this morning from Raceland USA. The person (who did not give a name) said they've never seen that kind of problem before, assumed it was defective, and would gladly send me a replacement. This rep said that s/he'd talk to their tech department, and would send me a return shipping label if they wanted to study the rusty one.

I've received a tracking number. Having to redo the work is no fun, but it's nice to know they respond quickly to problems and honor their warranty. I will continue to document this experience.

Update, 1/6/10: The replacement arrived. They did include a return shipping label for the failed header, so I'll be sending that back as soon as it's out. Quality of the welds and materials on the replacement looks about as good as the original. Here's to hoping that the actual alloy used is a more proper mix so it doesn't rust.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Raceland header rusts and breaks

Update at bottom.
On my commute home tonight, my car backfired badly twice on consecutive upshifts. Immediately after the second blast, my car was ear-bleedingly loud. I knew something bad had happened to my header; it had been looking and sounding iffy for a couple weeks. When I got home, I jacked the car up and saw this.

After a trip to Farm & Fleet for a patch kit and a set of jack stands that I would later return, I came home and applied the patch. It worked for about 5 minutes, and quickly became nearly as loud as it was before. I blame my poor patch job and not buying enough patch material. But it's quiet enough to get me to my parents' garage without making me deaf.

I'm going to send the picture above to Raceland and ask for a replacement. T-304 stainless steel shouldn't rust, especially not like this, and not after barely more than a year. For now, I'm driving Amanda's car to work the rest of the week (the university is closed, so she's off work) and I'll apply a more permanent repair.

My original post about the install is here:

Update: The 2-year warranty was honored, and I'm impressed with their customer service.