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auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davemchine
Date: February 21, 2006 04:29PM
I just had the radiator replaced for $450, now it needs a fuel pump $500, and intake gaskets $600, and apparently the brake lines need flushing $80 and the power steering fluid needs replacement $80. 100k miles on a gmc yukon, I guess it's time had just come.

Dave
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Racer X
Date: February 21, 2006 04:35PM
replace the PS fluid? Thats a new one, unless there is a lot of debris in it from wear.

Yep, not as easy to work on as a dodge dart.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Kiva
Date: February 21, 2006 04:41PM
i sincerely hope you're not going to the dealer for this....that will inflate your costs dramatically...

even if it is a private garage, you can make a call or two and get estimates re: costs to see if you're paying too much..

kiva



----------------------
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: mattkime
Date: February 21, 2006 04:54PM
i pay $70 a month and ride the subway as much as i please.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: billb
Date: February 21, 2006 04:57PM
At 100K, blowing out the brake lines completely is a good idea.
( as long as they come apart )
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: February 21, 2006 05:02PM
$600 for intake gaskets? I had my Explorer's replaced about 3
years ago for $285 and they're pain. You have to remove the
valve covers to do it. You need to find a good local
independent mechanic. $650 was what the dealer wanted to do
mine 3 years ago.



Grateful11




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/21/2006 09:46PM by Grateful11.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davemchine
Date: February 21, 2006 05:12PM
Being a non-mechanical type person I always feel like i'm being taken by the mechanic, but the car is my wifes and it is the one the kids ride in all the time so I will keep it perfect. It's gotta last another 5 years anyway, minimum.

Dave
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: kahuna1342
Date: February 21, 2006 05:12PM
Most of that fuel pump is labor. The part itself should be less than $100. It is the draining of the fuel and dropping of the tank that is a b!tch. I know, I have done two of them on my Safari and it is basically the same system.





Two wrongs don't make a right, but, three rights make a left.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davester
Date: February 21, 2006 05:36PM
Grateful11 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Power Steering and Brake fluid?
> Why not drain the resvoirs and
> fill them back up run it for a few days drain
> them again and fill
> them back up that should refesh it. That maybe
> bad advise...

Yes, that is horrible advice, at least for the brake system. That will do nothing to "refresh" the fluid in the system. Also, brake fluid should be flushed completely every two years in pretty much all cars. The reason for flushing is that brake fluid gradually absorbs water which then allows the hydraulic brake system components to rust from the inside. The alternative to doing this is complete brake system failure ...way more expensive than $80 for a flush.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Racer X
Date: February 21, 2006 05:42PM
Brake fluid is hygroscopic. It goes out of its way to absorb water. Even with newer aluminum components being used in calipers, wheel cylinders and brake master cylinders, it can cause problem. Something like aluminum chloride corosion. Pretty much the same thing as iron rusting.

Brake power flush at an independant shop should be in the $60 range or less. It is pretty hands off. I can gravity flush my Buicks. I try to do it every spring if possible, and use Castrol Dot 4 LMA fluid.

Find an independant shop, and see if they will do a package deal.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: billb
Date: February 21, 2006 05:48PM
Grateful11 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
. Power Steering and Brake fluid?
> Why not drain the resvoirs and
> fill them back up run it for a few days drain
> them again and fill
> them back up that should refesh it. That maybe
> bad advise but
> I've heard of that being done before.
>
> Grateful11
>
>

Much like the ocean's tides, the steering fluid doesn't 'circulate' like you might expect.
Heat , age and repeated compression can turn brake fluid into 'jello'. Pulling trailer weight that vehicle is capable of would compound that. He wants all new fluid, especially near the brakes. ( I've had rear lines so blocked 100 PSI did nothing but pack it all in haredr, if anything )


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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Kiva
Date: February 21, 2006 06:06PM
so, dave...who gave you those estimates? Independent shop or dealer?

kiva



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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davemchine
Date: February 21, 2006 06:18PM
it is with the dealer. The car left me stranded last night and I had to have it towed 'somewhere' and all of our previous work has been done at the dealer (not much). So I know i am paying high but my other choice would be to have it towed to another mechanic and that would eat into any savings.

Dave
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: February 21, 2006 07:03PM
davester Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Grateful11 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
>
> > Power Steering and Brake fluid?
> > Why not drain the resvoirs and
> > fill them back up run it for a few days
> drain
> > them again and fill
> > them back up that should refesh it. That
> maybe
> > bad advise...
>
> Yes, that is horrible advice, at least for the
> brake system. That will do nothing to "refresh"
> the fluid in the system. Also, brake fluid should
> be flushed completely every two years in pretty
> much all cars. The reason for flushing is that
> brake fluid gradually absorbs water which then
> allows the hydraulic brake system components to
> rust from the inside. The alternative to doing
> this is complete brake system failure ...way more
> expensive than $80 for a flush.

I guess having 225K miles on my '91 2WD 4door Explorer with
the only one major repair that having been an intake
manifold gasket repair means nothing. I do every repair I
can. If it's not broke I don't fix it. It has the same
transmission and original fluid and the original brake
fliud. I realize it doesn't circulate and there's no reason
to change unless it's milky white from moisture or has a
burnt smell. I changed a front caliper recently and there
was absolutely nothing wrong with the fluid I bled off.
People do too much stuff to cars and get way less miles than
I do. It may blow up tomorrow and if it does I've got my
moneys worth out of it. I know people that flush their
tranny after every trip to the mountains with a camper,
that's total fanatical BS. Keep the oil changed, the tire
pressure checked, the tranny level correct, and all fluids
topped off and drive but that's just me I only around 200K
or more out of my vehicles. It's ok I expected that response.

BTW: It averages 23.5 mpg with a 20 some tank average.





Grateful11
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Michael
Date: February 21, 2006 07:16PM
davemchine Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Being a non-mechanical type person I always feel
> like i'm being taken by the mechanic, but the car
> is my wifes and it is the one the kids ride in all
> the time so I will keep it perfect. It's gotta
> last another 5 years anyway, minimum.


I do exactly the same. I'm a bit more comfortable now than years ago, since we all have cell phones, but I keep my wife's car in great shape and replace it sooner than I should. Don't want to leave my sweetheart stranded!
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Bimwad
Date: February 21, 2006 08:59PM
Grateful11 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I guess having 225K miles on my '91 2WD 4door
> Explorer with
> the only one major repair that having been an
> intake
> manifold gasket repair means nothing. I do every
> repair I
> can. If it's not broke I don't fix it.

It means that you're lucky, and fortunate that the engineers realize that deferred maintainance on the part of owners is the norm and not the exception.

Not such a big deal with automobiles, but the same practice applied to the human body can result in (not really) shocking diagnoses of terminal life-threatening diseases.

> It has the same
> transmission and original fluid and the original
> brake
> fliud. I realize it doesn't circulate and there's
> no reason
> to change unless it's milky white from moisture or
> has a
> burnt smell. I changed a front caliper recently
> and there
> was absolutely nothing wrong with the fluid I bled
> off.

So, did you purposely give incorrect advice and then retract it only after being corrected by someone more knowledgeable?

The look or smell of the fluid is not going to tell you how it will perform its intended function. In the case of brake fluid, moisture absorption will not only affect it corrosiveness, but also its boiling point, which is even more important and the principal criteria in how brake fluid is rated. When you're tooling down the mountain, that becomes somewhat important as vaporization has a severe negative effect on the effectiveness of the brakes.

> People do too much stuff to cars and get way less
> miles than
> I do. It may blow up tomorrow and if it does
> I've got my
> moneys worth out of it. I know people that
> flush their
> tranny after every trip to the mountains with a
> camper,
> that's total fanatical BS.

Agreed, some people do overdo it, like those who change their oil much too frequently out of ignorance and then dismiss it as cheap insurance. However, that doesn't mean that all maintainance can be ignored, particularly for safety systems such as brakes that not only affect you, but could affect others who share the road with you.

> Keep the oil changed,
> the tire
> pressure checked, the tranny level correct, and
> all fluids
> topped off and drive but that's just me I only
> around 200K
> or more out of my vehicles. It's ok I expected
> that response.

Yet another contradiction. You seem to recognize the importance of regular oil changes, yet choose to ignore the fact that other fluids like the brake and PS also require periodic replacement.

Of course, you're free to do as you choose or your economic model dictates. But please refrain from giving erroneous technical advice and then supporting it with an anomaly, against conventional practice and proven wisdom.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: elmo3
Date: February 21, 2006 09:27PM
Changing the oil *is* cheap insurance.

At least, it was on my 92 Civic. That car is still running strong--and according to Blackstone Labs, there's very little wear inside the engine.

Cheap insurance indeed.



---------------


In the words of DharmaDog: "it may or may not be utter horse@#$%&, but it shouldn't be dismissed simply because it doesn't agree with your opinion."

Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Trying is the first step to failure. -- Homer Simpson
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: C(-)ris
Date: February 21, 2006 09:29PM
Those prices all seem inflated by 20 to 40% or so. Go to NAPA and price out the Radiator and fuel pump, refuse to pay more than that price on parts. Get an estimate for how much time it is going to take to do those parts and negotiate on the rate. That said, you will never be able to do any of the above at the dealer when your truck is sitting there broke.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: elmo3
Date: February 21, 2006 09:54PM
You could chase the parts down yourself and give them to the third party service shop. But that *could* be penny wise and pound foolish.

A few months ago, I needed a new starter. I use and trust, absolutely, the local shop up the street for all my non-Honda repairs (I'd let him do Honda stuff, too, except I have the best Honda mechanic in the world at my disposal). I also let him buy the parts.

(As an aside, he took the car in at 2pm and had it back to me at 4pm, with absolutely no notice. The neighborhood shop can be a rare treasure.)

A month after he put the starter in, I had two or three instances of the new starter starting to do what the old one was doing--the solenoid would stick, and I had to cycle the key to kick the solenoid into action. I mentioned it to these guys who did the repair, and they just shrugged and said, 'Give me the keys. I'll take care of it.' Damned if a couple hours later I didn't have a new starter in at zero charge.

I don't think I'd have gotten that if I had supplied the part.

I also recently needed new brakes all the way around, including rotors. This is a Lexus, and even older Lexii typically get expensive parts. But the quote he gave me was $500 total--all parts, all labor, all four corners--WITH LEXUS PARTS. It seems he has a source for Lexus brand brake parts that allows him to do this. He said he can sometimes get other Lexus parts cheap, but not often. However, the brake parts come in to an American distributor with which he has some sort of connection, and gets them on the side or before they reach the Lexus dealer or whatever.

And again, he had this done on a Saturday morning with no notice from me. I walked in, dropped the keys, walked home, and a few hours later went and picked it up.

You can't always win by sourcing the parts yourself.



---------------


In the words of DharmaDog: "it may or may not be utter horse@#$%&, but it shouldn't be dismissed simply because it doesn't agree with your opinion."

Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.

Trying is the first step to failure. -- Homer Simpson
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: onthedownlow
Date: February 21, 2006 10:00PM
How much are you paying in gas too? Factor that in to the 100k+.



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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: February 21, 2006 10:20PM
Bimwad Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> But please refrain from
> giving erroneous technical advice and then
> supporting it with an anomaly, against
> conventional practice and proven wisdom.

Lighten Up! I think this line, "That may be bad advise but
I've heard of that being done before.", pretty much said "Hey
question my advice don't do it until you check it out".
Don't accuse me planting incorrect information just for the hell
of it, I don't play those games.


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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: bangman
Date: February 21, 2006 10:53PM
I ride a mountain bike to work when I can.



---------
3GHz - The clock is STILL ticking Steve.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Markintosh
Date: February 21, 2006 11:07PM
It's hard to believe that people do so much preventative maintenance on their cars...buy the right cars and they last just fine.

Change the oil on a reasonable schedule. Change the air filter when its looking dirty. Replace the brakes when they squeal. Replace tranny fluid only if required during warranty period, tires as needed for safety....other than that let her rip.

We put on about 50K total a year between 2 vehicles and have most of our vehicles to 150-200K. Have never spent money other than above except once when we fried the brake rotors towing the boat.

Wow...you people really like your mechanics.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: mikebw
Date: February 22, 2006 02:12AM
Markintosh, I'm with you on this one.

I enjoy having a car that just goes, that is- until something actually breaks. My Toyota Cressida is a good example, just change the oil, rotate/balance tires and it keeps on going.
Of course some things just wear out, like hoses and belts, radiator can leak from corrosion over time too. None of these should cause a catasrophic failure, but getting stranded on the side of some road might not be worth the money you saved by avoiding preventative maintenance.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Bimwad
Date: February 22, 2006 02:18AM
Grateful11 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Lighten Up! I think this line, "That may be bad
> advise but
> I've heard of that being done before.", pretty
> much said "Hey
> question my advice don't do it until you check it
> out".
> Don't accuse me planting incorrect information
> just for the hell
> of it, I don't play those games.

I was not addressing that aspect of your posting. Others had already corrected you on that point.

My contention, if you'll read my reply, was that it's foolish to think that the condition of brake fluid and thus its performance can be verified merely through a visual test.

It's even more foolish to believe that there is "nothing wrong" with fluid that had been in service for 15 years and over 200k miles. Good as new, as long as it doesn't look or smell funny, right? That seems to be the implication you're making. If so, that reveals a fundamental lack of knowledge regarding the subject at hand.

If you have doubts about your advice and think it could be "bad," why offer it at all? We're addressing technical issues that can be proven or refuted, not opinion. There is no debate, it's either right or wrong.

I don't be mean to sound harsh, nor am I targeting anybody in particular, but I'd rather people walk away with the correct knowledge rather than continue to harbor and spread misconceptions.

As far as BYOP, or negotiating a rate with a shop -- most good mechanics are going to laugh in your face if you try that tactic, if not get hostile about your attempt to take away one of their profit centers.

If you can find a mechanic who is willing to install parts you provide, don't expect a warranty on either the parts or the labor used to install those parts.

The best shops aren't even going to touch the subject, and have more than enough business to reject those kinds of overtures without regret.

You're certainly not going to get the kind of service that elmo received -- and the part to keep in mind that mechanics do provide a service, not piecemeal labor to install parts at your beckoning.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Speedy
Date: February 22, 2006 05:46AM
You're being taken every time you pull up to the pump with that gas hog.

davemchine Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I always feel like i'm being taken by the mechanic,
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: February 22, 2006 08:46AM
Okay everyone no more opinions on this forum! We've heard it
from the master. Don't connect me with the BYOP stuff I never
mentioned that. Misconceptions, sort of like what our Gov't is
doing right now.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Racer X
Date: February 22, 2006 03:47PM
Markintosh said "Replace tranny fluid only if required during warranty period,"

So when it is out of warranty the fluid magically doesn't need replacement any more?

ATF has maximum life expectancy at 180F of roughly 100K. Todays vehicles run the ATF through a fluid/fluid heat exchanger inside the radiator. Today's vehicles run about 205F on the low side, and hotter when pushed hard. And for every 10 degree temp drop, the fluid life doubles. So running it at 205 gives ATF a life expectancy of around 18K. If the transmission runs hotter, life of the fluid drops quickly. ATF also has buffering agents in it to neutralize acids that form. The acids attack the brass anbd bronze components in the transmission.

Your car, your bank account, your choice


Lots of people never see a doctor in their life either, untill they are on a slab in the morgue, and the doc is looking for cause of death......



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/22/2006 03:48PM by Racer X.
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: Markintosh
Date: February 22, 2006 05:27PM
All i was saying is that I have NEVER had to do a tranny repair ever. So I replace the fluid to maintain warranty and that's it. I have not had a significant repair cost needed other than brake rotors on our truck (my fault) since we made the mistake of buying a 1991 Exploder (first year made, sold after 13 trips to the shop and 16 months on the road and needing about $7K in warranty repairs with only 30K).

I laugh at those people that think you must do those dealer checkups every 12K miles. What a scam.

It's all about the car you start with...
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davemchine
Date: February 22, 2006 05:53PM
Someone mentioned that the Yukon gets bad gas mileage. That is correct! heh. But when we purchased the Yukon it's purpose was to pull a sailboat and alternativly a camper, not something I could do with a smaller and less powerfull vehicle. Also, we live in a small town and put about 10k miles on it every year so gas mileage is not quite as important as if we lived in a larger city. If I was in Seattle or Portland we would not own a Yukon, I have no idea how people can afford the gas when they do that much driving.

As for service overkill. I dunno. When the liquids are on the driveway and you have to top them off periodically it seems like fixing the problem is the right way to go. I have three major problems
radiator - I was topping it off daily
seals - it's on the driveway every day
fuel pump - car no go without it!

The only thing I could have deffered is the seals (seels?) but the car has to go another 5 years minimum so it seems like a case of do it now or do it later.

I really appreciate everyone listening to me cry in my cherio's as I write the repair check and I also appreciate all the advice on what to do and what not to do. It gave me alot to think about.

Dave
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Re: auto expenses, ouch!
Posted by: davemchine
Date: February 23, 2006 10:40AM
I dunno if anyone is still following this thread but my wife just got the car back and I got a little more info on what was done. Apparently it was the intake manifold that was replaced. They told her it was leaking oil into the engine. I know nothing about this stuff. It sounds important though...

Dave
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