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Old 06-20-2014, 07:06 PM   #61
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My Hyundai dealer said it would take 1 1/2 hr of labor to replace the center brake light bulb, plus the cost of the bulb. They said they had to take out the back seat to replace the bulb and that was why the labor charge was so high. I passed.

I later found a YouTube video where someone did it (for the same make and model car) in about 10 minutes. Scoundrels!!!
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Old 06-21-2014, 01:34 PM   #62
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When I purchased my Toyota 2 1/2 years ago it came with a 2 year free maintenance every 6 months deal. I have not taken it back after the expiration of the deal. They have written and emailed me a dozen times and have even called me to "set up" a good time to provide the necessary maintenance.

No thanks.
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Old 06-21-2014, 02:25 PM   #63
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Looks like I'll be sitting around at a dealer's service department soon. Just got a recall notice for my car and tried to set up an appointment online to get that cared for on Tuesday. Awaiting a reply for appointment verification as I type.
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Old 06-21-2014, 03:05 PM   #64
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My Hyundai dealer said it would take 1 1/2 hr of labor to replace the center brake light bulb, plus the cost of the bulb. They said they had to take out the back seat to replace the bulb and that was why the labor charge was so high. I passed.

I later found a YouTube video where someone did it (for the same make and model car) in about 10 minutes. Scoundrels!!!
Followup - took it out today - took about 10 minutes and I wasn't rushing. Still need to get the bulb and put it back in but what the dealer told me was pure crazy. I'm guessing they would have done it in 10-15 minutes and then charged me for 1 1/2 hours.
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Old 06-21-2014, 04:13 PM   #65
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............. I'm guessing they would have done it in 10-15 minutes and then charged me for 1 1/2 hours.
No way. They'd have charged you for 2 hours and said that they ran into "problems".
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Old 06-21-2014, 04:41 PM   #66
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No way. They'd have charged you for 2 hours and said that they ran into "problems".
.........and they would have scratched your bumper cover and generated a list of other things that need "replacement" or "inspection" for a large fee.
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Old 06-21-2014, 06:25 PM   #67
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Followup - took it out today - took about 10 minutes and I wasn't rushing. Still need to get the bulb and put it back in but what the dealer told me was pure crazy. I'm guessing they would have done it in 10-15 minutes and then charged me for 1 1/2 hours.
Hyundai dealer wanted to charge my gf $60 labor to replace the "cabin air filter". It's behind the glove box, and you have to know which lever to tweak in which way, which I found out easily on Youtube. You guessed it, it was a 5 minute job. I replaced the filter for her. Those dealers are truly lowlifes.
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Old 06-21-2014, 06:59 PM   #68
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Hyundai dealer wanted to charge my gf $60 labor to replace the "cabin air filter". It's behind the glove box, and you have to know which lever to tweak in which way, which I found out easily on Youtube. You guessed it, it was a 5 minute job. I replaced the filter for her. Those dealers are truly lowlifes.
Having driven turbocharged cars for a good while, wait until the landscape catches up with the gasoline powered ones soon (as they are). The famous "limp mode" happens when your car slows to a crawl and has no power. The turbo shuts down - aka: no boost. Drag it into the dealer and immediately he says "you need a new turbo.....at $3500.00"!

Ah, but 99 times out of a 100 it is usually a boost leak from a split charge hose or a LOOSE CLAMP! So they throw on a new turbo, replace the hose and charge you for something they did not diagnose correctly.

Be careful, my friends....very careful.
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Old 06-21-2014, 07:19 PM   #69
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I have never paid a dime to anyone to repair my vehicles as I always did them myself. I still own the shop I worked out of for 30 plus years so as long as my health holds I will continue to do everything. One of the perks for learning a trade over 50 years ago. I would have went crazy if I had to sit behind a desk for my entire working years. oldtrig
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Old 06-21-2014, 10:40 PM   #70
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Wow, lots of broadbrushed angst toward car dealers! It seems to me that as with anything in life, there are reliable and trustworthy people, and those that are out to take advantage. Word of mouth from friends and people you trust is usually a good way to find reputable car service (or anything else for that matter). Having said that, auto repair is an area that many people know nothing about and feel vulnerable about, so taking advantage is not uncommon. Sad but true. But there are good dealers and independents out there.
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Old 06-22-2014, 06:33 AM   #71
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Not positive, but think I remember someone telling me that their husband worked as a mechanic for a Ford dealer and that they were subcontractors not employees of the dealership. Anyone heard of this and wouldn't this contribute to more "repairs"?
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Old 06-22-2014, 08:47 AM   #72
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Not positive, but think I remember someone telling me that their husband worked as a mechanic for a Ford dealer and that they were subcontractors not employees of the dealership. Anyone heard of this and wouldn't this contribute to more "repairs"?
Yes, I had a neighbor in my old neighborhood who works for a local Mitsu dealer as a mechanic and he is a contract employee. He gets part of the "book" rate when working on jobs. He has told me some stories over a few beers that are not worth repeating. I believe that many dealerships have set the system up to hire contract mechanics who work by the job.
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Old 06-22-2014, 09:27 AM   #73
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Most dealers I know have some in-house mechanics and sub out 'specialities' like stereo and AC work. They will do software upgrades in house.
I live in southern California and have found that the Pep Boys and other chain automotive store mechanics (usually Latinos with not good language skills ) are surprisingly good, knowledgable mechanics just under supplied for tools, under paid and over managed.
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Old 06-22-2014, 11:00 AM   #74
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I have never paid a dime to anyone to repair my vehicles as I always did them myself. I still own the shop I worked out of for 30 plus years so as long as my health holds I will continue to do everything. One of the perks for learning a trade over 50 years ago. I would have went crazy if I had to sit behind a desk for my entire working years. oldtrig

Well I am going to try a do it yourself today, though I am missing the skillset you have Oldtrig. It looks easy and that scares me because nothing ever goes easy with me concerning vehicles. I am going to try one of those AC self charging cans. My system is over 11 years old and not blowing as cold as it used to. I will try to be careful and not screw it up somehow.


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Old 06-22-2014, 11:13 AM   #75
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Well I am going to try a do it yourself today, though I am missing the skillset you have Oldtrig. It looks easy and that scares me because nothing ever goes easy with me concerning vehicles. I am going to try one of those AC self charging cans. My system is over 11 years old and not blowing as cold as it used to. I will try to be careful and not screw it up somehow.


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Just remember, you probably have a leak and all the refrigerant is gone (unless a component is shot). If you revive the system (you will know quickly), you can expect it will leak down over time again. But it's worth a try.

We had an old Dodge van (1993?) that had a no cooling and kept the A/C bearable through the summer months with a recharge. I guess we recharged it every Spring for 5 years before we sold the van.
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Old 06-22-2014, 11:38 AM   #76
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Just remember, you probably have a leak and all the refrigerant is gone (unless a component is shot). If you revive the system (you will know quickly), you can expect it will leak down over time again. But it's worth a try.

We had an old Dodge van (1993?) that had a no cooling and kept the A/C bearable through the summer months with a recharge. I guess we recharged it every Spring for 5 years before we sold the van.

That is my goal, Aja. The AC works fine (to me anyways) when temps are in mid 80s. As it crept into the lower 90s this week, it only cooled at a modest level. I just want to get it working 2 more years before I finally break down and buy a new vehicle. If I can ever get over the emotional trauma of writing the check for the sales tax, that is.


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Old 06-22-2014, 12:02 PM   #77
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We've only taken our Ford to the dealer once, for "recall" repairs (not a big deal, but nice to have done - lubricating/replacing door locks, which in fact were beginning to stick on our car). The rest of the work we've had done at several local shops. Auto shop service and charges do seem to vary wildly.

An example: The airbag light wouldn't go off, so I left the car at a service station that gets virtually all its business from my employer. They charged $98 to run diagnostics, which led to an estimate of almost $500 to replace the clock spring. We decided to live with the problem for a while.

A couple years later, a couple other problems were showing up, so we took the car to a service station within walking distance of our gym, and asked them to fix everything at once. Same $100 to run diagnostics, resulting in another broken clock spring diagnosis, but the real shocker was the charge to fix the clock spring: A little more than half of the other station's estimate. And the funny thing is, the second shop is in a wealthier area than the first. Maybe the first shop charges more because they figure they have a "captive audience." You just never know.

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Old 06-22-2014, 12:53 PM   #78
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I end up bringing my car to a Car-X for service. Like most anything else are the pros and cons. A pro is no appointment needed, just stop by. Another is there is no charge for diagnosing a problem. I don't they the place is trying to churn service as I've had times with my previous old car that the place would recommend holding off fixing (such as replacing the A/C) because the car is old where as they could have pushing the replacement. On the con, even though an AAA recommended shop, sometimes the place isn't as competent. I had an oil leak so had the place replace the rusted oil pan. But the leak didn't stop and made me wonder, shouldn't that been discovered earlier?

If there wasn't the subjective element, I suppose everyone would know exactly where to take their cars. But like looking for a good restaurant, there's always a hit or miss element.
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:32 PM   #79
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Just remember, you probably have a leak and all the refrigerant is gone (unless a component is shot). If you revive the system (you will know quickly), you can expect it will leak down over time again. But it's worth a try.

We had an old Dodge van (1993?) that had a no cooling and kept the A/C bearable through the summer months with a recharge. I guess we recharged it every Spring for 5 years before we sold the van.

Well I was wrong Aja. Ran the testing gauge on it before putting in refrigerant and it was showing red zone which means do not charge. Compressor seems to be making all sorts of noises causing vehicle to idle rough. When I shut off AC it idles just fine. Hmm maybe I should baby the AC this summer and reset my goal of one more year with the car. Don't want to go down the road of major repairs on a 200k car.


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Old 06-22-2014, 01:49 PM   #80
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Ran the testing gauge on it before putting in refrigerant and it was showing red zone which means do not charge.
Red = "The system already has enough refrigerant"?
Yep, if you can get by for another summer with it as-is, that might be a good option. There doesn't seem to be any inexpensive way to replace a compressor on a car, and I've had less than great luck even when I pay the big bucks (seems there's often further contamination in the system even if I buy a new receiver/dryer, etc).
Maybe a $400 "garage" to keep the sun off? Also keeps the snow off!
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