Well, I got my car back from the shop (local, NOT Ford dealership) after dropping it off this morning. I took it in to have, what I thought was an exhaust rattle, checked out.
When I picked it up today, they did the following things:
1.) checked all heat shields; all were tight and placed correctly
2.) check exhaust alignment; everything was WAY off (f'in performance shop that installed it this past summer ). So, they realigned everything back to how it SHOULD have been It turns out that the exhaust was starting to melt my back bumper Whoops.
3.) found an exhaust leak between the flexpipe and catback. My guess is that the screwed up exhaust alignment destroyed the gasket between the flexpipe and the catback.
So, the noise I originally took the car in for sounds like a dirtbike. It's hardly noticeable when you're driving the car, but when you rev it at a stop, you can barely hear it. It's most noticeable from 2-3500RPM (shop said so as well). I thought it was a heat shield since it sounded really "metally" even though it was real quiet.
Can an exhaust leak sound like this? I've heard they "hiss" and part of me thinks that I do hear hissing after 4000RPM, but I'm not really sure since I never paid attention to exhaust noise prior to hearing the dirtbike-like sound.
So, I ordered a new gasket from FocusSport to replace the wornout flexpipe-to-catback gasket.
Does it sound like I'm sane on what the problem is? The shop said that exhaust leaks can sound exactly how my car does and with the car up on the lift, they easily pin-pointed noise coming from the flexpipe-to-catback.