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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Kinda at a dilemma here.

I have a 1998 Honda Civic HX Coupe (MT). Great gas mileage, reliable, comfortable to drive, etc. Prob is, I've had a cracked exhaust manifold for well over a year now. Honda asked me if I wanted them to fix it back when I had the timing belt replaced. Since it would've cost me an additional $750 and didn't sound serious, I said no.

Now, the honda part is around that price for the exhaust manifold. My options seem to be: A) Leave it alone. B) Go aftermarket. C) Take it to the mechanic.

If I go A I keep my poor gas mileage (I get about 370ish highway miles per tank now, where the car is supposed to get over 500ish, highway...). B will cost me close to the same, because of what I've read around here and elsewhere I'll need to replace the manifold with an AM header, which will force me to go with a new cat-back exhaust. $$$. C will cost me as much if not more than replacing the parts myself, with aftermarket. And why pay more for a stock manifold when I can go AM header + exhaust for less? A minor problem is that I have very little idea how to change out the h+e, but that wouldn't stop me, as I can learn quickly and/or get help from gearhead friends.

I'm not entirely concerned with peformance. I have a motorcycle for that. :) Plus, its VTEC-E and made for economy... hell, that's the reason I bought it. However, I think changing out the header + exhaust will boost performance and thereby economy. I'd like to get over 250k miles out of this car before I move on. Budget-wise I'm looking at a new vehicle in 3-4 years, and the car currently stands at 120k in mileage.

So what I want to know is if this 'crack' in the manifold will cause me problems down the road. Its been close to 2 years since I found out about the problem and all I've noticed is decreased gas mileage. But 2-3 years down the road, will the crack widen? Will the manifold blow up, taking me with it? (jk)

From shopping around on the net I can get a AM header for around 250ish, and a cat-back exhaust system for around 350-400ish. Which is much lower than what Honda quoted me for that single part. Suggestions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the advice, guys. Simply replacing the stock manifold seems the least expensive and time-consuming part, so I think I'll go with that.

Now the only problem is finding a manifold that fits my car.

Most auctions read like this:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/HOND...045685999QQcategoryZ33632QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
"This exhaust manifold fits the following specific years and Honda car models:

1996 1997 1998 1999 2000

96-97 Civic Base & VTEC-E models (Federal & Canadian Emissions) (Does not fit California emissions)
96-97 Del Sol (with 1600, S (SOHC, VIN "6" 6th digit)) (Does not fit California emissions)
98-00 Civic Base models (Does not fit California emissions)"

My civic isn't a base model, though. Its VTEC-E. I could try and make this work, but I don't know if it'd properly fit my car, and I'd rather find an auction that says "fits 98 VTEC-E" .... or, would 98 'base model' work as well?
 

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my bros manifold on his 96 dx hb was cracked too. is that like a common thing? he gets like 20mpg and burns tons of oil too..lol
 

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all of d-series(excpt the DOHC) have the same bolt pattern but the colector may not line up to the exahust properly,I would just get an aftermarket header, a tesp pipe or highflow cat for the EX and a EX cat back,you dont need the cat since its an HX so I would go testpipe.
 

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Pull the manifold, take it to a shop, and have the crack welded up.

Going aftermarket is also an option, but I believe that you have to do the entire exhaust system since the hx has the cat integrated into the header. You would need a new header, new cat, new exhaust, etc. You could also try to find someone with an oem EX exhaust setup.
 
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