I've gotta admit, I have zero idea what kind of pads are on any of my horns, except the Artley which boasts a set of pads handcut from trumpet spit-valve foam (the holes weren't finished and ate pads like a beagle with an open bag of kibble). I'd say unless you're performing at higher-end events, then it probably doesn't much matter so long as the pads seal and don't make the keys feel mushy.
As for repair vs replace, I recommended that you keep checking around some, if you have any decent music shops nearby. If nothing else, it's fun to play different flutes. Heck, play the really expensive ones, even. See what you think. If you fall in love with one in your price range, then yes, treat yourself and buy it. If none really thrill you, then stay with your trusty old Gemi. Like pied said, it's a good solid horn. And you'll know that it's the right flute for you for now.
Flutes:1975 Gemeinhardt M2 in chrome nickel;1982 Armstrong 80;2006 Yamaha 584
Piccs:1978 Artley piece of crap 15 P;1982 Gemeinhardt 4S;1980s? Armstrong all wood (no model)
Bass:2006 Jupiter di Medici G0199
Treble:2009 Guo New Voice
+ many flute-cousins