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Thread: Auto Repair

  1. #1
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    Auto Repair






    One thing I know nothing about but have always wished I knew everything about is cars. I love driving and I love cars, but I hate the industry. I hate that one person will get a different price than the next person. I hate that I always feel auto repair shops will try to gouge you any chance they get (and I am not alone here), because like buying a car, repairing one means you'll get a different price than the next guy.

    I had a problem with my spark plugs last year and needed to get them replaced. I was quoted around $250-some to replace the set. Before I had given the go-ahead to the shop, I had called a mechanic friend I went to high school with. He said the spark plugs were the easiest thing to replace, would cost less than $40 for the parts and about 15 minutes of my time. He even said he'd do it for me for free, although the guy at the parts store said he would do it for $40.

    Last year my brother needed to get a transmission flush and he took it into a shop, then soon after needed to get his power window fixed so he took it to another shop. The second shop told him he needed to get his transmission fluid flushed because the first shop had not done it . So my brother took it back to the first shop and complained.. the guys denied it and called my brother a liar and were very rude. Then my brother asked them to check it and yeah, they didn't do anything. I heard this is pretty common with oil changes too.. they just figure it's free money and don't bother doing anything. Then your car comes up with other problems and you pay for those later. So basically when you think you're getting your oil changed, you're just paying for parking!!

    The only reason for this rant is... two nights ago, my brother's car broke down. To make a long story short(er), he towed his car to a shop and they gave him an estimate for $1,200!!

    This is a copy of the suggested repairs itemized:


    Can anyone who knows about cars tell me what is a ripoff here (meaning I should be able to find it cheaper elsewhere without having to have to do it ourselves)? My brother drives a 2000 Ford Escort ZX2.

  2. #2
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    By the way, if you look toward the bottom, you will see something that says "Student Discount" which they only offered my brother after he said he wanted to shop around. This was after guaranteeing the original estimate was the cheapest he would find anywhere.

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    Why did it break down. What happened?

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    didnt read a word!

  5. #5
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    ^ Your good today.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mista View Post
    Why did it break down. What happened?
    Not sure. I know my brother does a regular maintanence on his car and is a good driver. In fact, he has gotten the car checked out on so many different occassions due to different problems over the last year that it's hard to not think the shops have been fucking up the car worse each time. All I know is that the car was working fine, then he parked it to do some grocery shopping, came back, started the ignition, and then the power steering didn't work, so he couldn't drive it back. After towing it to a shop and getting it inspected, the whole list of problems above was given to him.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by MyK View Post
    didnt read a word!
    Thanks for the help as usual.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by KentDog View Post
    Not sure. I know my brother does a regular maintanence on his car and is a good driver. In fact, he has gotten the car checked out on so many different occassions due to different problems over the last year that it's hard to not think the shops have been fucking up the car worse each time. All I know is that the car was working fine, then he parked it to do some grocery shopping, came back, started the ignition, and then the power steering didn't work, so he couldn't drive it back. After towing it to a shop and getting it inspected, the whole list of problems above was given to him.
    Going by the quote and what you said, the only concievable thing I can think of is - The water pump seized and stopped the belt spinning, wearing it out, which would stop the power steering pump working. As for timing? I doubt he needs fluid or a flush either if he gets it serviced. And the belt tensioning, on my car it does it itself with a spring loaded system.

    Seems sus to me.

  9. #9
    the unbanned
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    Quote Originally Posted by KentDog View Post
    Thanks for the help as usual.
    no problem! anytime!

  10. #10
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    It is a Ford tho

  11. #11
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    If the car runs it doesnt need a timing belt, thats a hose job right there. If the ps pump siezed and fried the belt, the belt will burn up, i seriously doubt it would fry the tensioner or the water pump. Ask to see the damaged tensioner, its just a pulley and should still sping freely.

    Over all it looks like a case of "these might as be replaced anyway due to age"

    Fuck that, fix only whats broken

  12. #12
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    We need more info on the symptoms. If the power steering system leaked out enough fluid the pump would not work. Add fluid to the full mark and if pump resumes doin' it's job ... the pump is fine find the leak and fix the leaky part ONLY. If the pump has no fluid loss but squeals and causes the steering to be hard then you may need to replace the pump. I'd look over the rest of the systems on the belt first though like the water pump and the a/c compressor & clutch before condemning the power steering pump.

    Bad bearings in the water pump may cause a heavy load on the belt driving the power steering pump frying the belt and reducing the rotational energy applied to the power steering pump causing hard steering ... been there dealt with that. Easy to tell on bearings ... the water pump should spin easily. If not replace it along with the belt. While your in there replace the thermostat ... these are next to free and hard o get to sometimes when everything is all put back together. There is a weep hole on the water pump that normally ... but not always ... leaks water when the bearings are bad.

    The tensioner should last the life of the car but ford tensioner pulleys suck balls. Been through toooo many of them 'cuz the bearings go bad.

    When ever I advise on proactive service I tell the customer it's just that ... "Your timing belt is goin south soon. Many cases when the timing belt goes it takes the valves with it causing the need for a valve job as part of the fix. Save that valve job money and replace the timing belt very soon." is how I would have advised a person. Bear in mind that timing belts don't go when the motor is not running, and when they do go there is an event that includes "funny noises" followed by a dead engine as you roll to a stop. Some mechanics are not big on communication "you needa get dat timing belt done now." A bad timing belt will cause poor performance, bad gas miliage, and often times "funny noises". Basically they get stretched out over time and cause the timing to be outta whack and the host of issues that attend a poorly timed engine.

  13. #13
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    20/20 did an undercover investigation about service centers and the results were horrible. The investigation covered 20 JiffyLubes in some city, I can't remember which, but they were able to prove that over half of the service centers charged customers for services they never performed.
    The 20/20 reporter busted the shit out of the managers of each service center to the point where they got one manager calling his district manager to tell him that their service center was busted. The cocksuckers knew that they weren't providing the services that they were being paid to do. The district manager shows up, but lies and says he isn’t the DM, but 20/20 later proved that he was. I hope the fucker is out of a job now.
    Fucking Determined!

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