The cost of muffler repairs is most affected by the severity of the repair needed and the mechanic performing the service in question. Simple repairs such as welding loose mountings back into place are usually less expensive than full replacement of the muffler or other extensive services.
Muffler repairs can be as simple as re-attaching an existing muffler or as complex as a full tear-down of the vehicle's exhaust system. If the existing muffler is still functional, costs for both parts and labor are usually lower than in a full replacement, especially since it is not necessary to purchase a new muffler. Conversely, costs are much higher if the exhaust pipes, catalytic converter or other components of the exhaust system must be serviced or replaced along with the muffler.
The mechanic performing a muffler repair can affect the cost of the repair considerably, with dealer mechanics and those specializing in more luxurious automobiles usually charging a premium labor rate. Smaller, independent muffler repair shops often offer the best labor rates for muffler repairs. Mechanically inclined car owners can often re-attach a loose muffler or perform other simple services themselves to reduce the cost of repairs, but full replacement of a muffler is a more difficult task that amateur mechanics may not be prepared to perform.