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A Mechanic's Life - Tales From Under the Hood

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Comments

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    NO CHARGE. I think they said some location on Shelbyville Rd

    If anyone knows what their training and investment in equipment is worth they should, and they are telling you that it's worth nothing, sooo.....
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    edited February 2013
    St. Matthews Imports- I don't know anything about them other than that they have been around for years and they now claim to also service domestic cars. The indie shop that services my Jeep doesn't charge me to read the codes on my TJ or Mazda, but I've been a customer since the mid '80s.

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,582
    edited February 2013
    It isn't about the money at all

    Wow; this conversation really picked up! Since I don't have the time to catch up on it, I'll skip reading forward to find out if someone has already elaborated on this particular quote.

    "It isn't about the money at all." Absolutely not - it's about trust. Trusting that your car is going to work when you attempt to start it, and work the whole time you want to use it. Trust that when someone says they fixed it, they did. The standard to measure up to this expectation is different for everyone, but I think there's a common denominator.... If the thing that stops working is the last thing that was fixed, the customer isn't going to be real happy about it (whether it's the tech's fault or not!).

    The only time I bought a car unplanned, while its predecessor still operated, was when my wife lost confidence in the "old car" and simply refused to drive it any longer. Peace of mind cannot be under-estimated nor under-valued.
    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    edited February 2013
    In Geometry we had to study Theorems and do Proofs. Lots of kids hated them, and there was usually a select few who actually enjoyed them.

    Well, I was one of those kids that enjoyed 'em :P .

    Your argument relies on the statement that the gas cap and only the gas cap is a rational cause for the P0442 If it's true 100% of the time then you have a valid theory. So, is the gas cap what is wrong 100% of the time or is it not?

    No, that's not what I said, which was you can replace the gas cap and that has a 90% (or whatever percentage you’re comfortable with) [chance of fixing the problem]

    Like I said in an earlier thread, you really have no idea how many P0442 codes are fixed by a simple gas cap replacement, or even by a simple remove and replace.!

    Coincidentally, around the time we were discussing the P0442 code in this thread, two of my vehicles (a 2009 Infiniti G37 and 2007 Dodge Grand Caravan) both threw that exact same code within a week or so of each other. Both times, I just filled the vehicles up (which meant removing and reinstalling the filler cap), and after several driving cycles, the CEL turned off (or maybe I cleared the code and the CEL stayed off). So in this sampling of 2 P0442 codes, the gas cap fix (or filling the tank) worked both times.

    probability of fixing the problem, or for $150 you will run a more exhaustive set of tests and pinpoint the problem with more certainty (but not 100%), then let the consumer make the call

    Now we get to the second half, as if that was even necessary. You pulled a price out of thin air and made sure to suggest doubt about the end results.


    Yep, because I don't believe you (or anyone else, for that matter) is that good - 100% correct, dead nuts on, all the time. I don't care how much training, or how much experience, or how much equipment and diagnostics software you have. Don't take it as an insult - you're just human!

    Do you know how to play "3 Card Monte"? The dealer never loses (unless he wants to)

    Nope, and in any case would never play (gamble) on anything where I knew the odds were stacked against me from the start. At least, certainly not on a card or other table game (slots included).

    The problem at the moment is you chose to pick two codes (test failures) that potentially are very unlikely to have cross checking conditions to try and make your point

    Well sure, to make my point. Just like a lot of the examples you've used ;) But also because those two examples have resulted in a fair amount of exchanges in this forum. And all I said was that you or some other tech would have some explaining to do.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    Now, having stated that... I have to say, I think this is one of those times you're grasping at straws to make your point.

    The word "lies" in the first sentence isn't there by accident.

    But before you dissmiss everything, follow this ride to it's next stop.

    http://www.edmunds.com/car-care/do-i-have-to-use-the-manufacturers-oil.html
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    No, that's not what I said, which was you can replace the gas cap and that has a 90% (or whatever percentage you’re comfortable with) [chance of fixing the problem]

    Like I said in an earlier thread, you really have no idea how many P0442 codes are fixed by a simple gas cap replacement, or even by a simple remove and replace.!


    Do you really know how many are not?

    So "IF" my 2010 Escape sets a P0442, what are the chances that it is a loose gas cap?
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,296
    edited February 2013
    CarMD says it's mostly like the O2 sensor now that causes the CEL to come on, since most people have been educated that they need to tighten their gas caps until it clicks. So the gas caps aren't throwing as many codes as they used to. But for the P0442, I suppose that one could still be the gas cap most often.

    Fords have had some TSBs for various EVAP codes over the years, but I don't have easy access to anything but the summaries, so I didn't look for a 2010 correlation.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2013
    So... What's your point here?

    Who do YOU think the target market is for the article you linked?

    The disclaimer at the end pretty much summed it up... When in doubt, follow the instruction found in the owner's manual.

    Setting aside the claims and counter-claims of manufacturer-specified oil superiority, here's all you have to remember: As long as you follow the oil specifications shown in your owner's manual, you have nothing to worry about.

    If everyone wanted to be into servicing cars at the depth you are, you'd be out of a job. Once again, many of us are perfectly capable of reading between the lines to glean the point being made.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Like I said in an earlier thread, you really have no idea how many P0442 codes are fixed by a simple gas cap replacement, or even by a simple remove and replace.!

    Do you really know how many are not?


    Nope, I don't. But the again, neither do you.

    So "IF" my 2010 Escape sets a P0442, what are the chances that it is a loose gas cap?

    Don't know. It could be near zero. But that still wouldn't stop me from telling someone to fill the tank up, reseat the cap, and drive it around a bit.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    Don't know. It could be near zero. But that still wouldn't stop me from telling someone to fill the tank up, reseat the cap, and drive it around a bit.

    Clue: It doesn't have a cap..... :D
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    edited February 2013
    But that still wouldn't stop me from telling someone to fill the tank up, reseat the cap, and drive it around a bit.

    I know nothing about any Ford Escape, but I do remember reading your suggestion in owner's manuals I have previously read regarding the CEL being illuminated. Whether or not its in that model's manual, I can't say.

    Seems like a reasonable first step to me. The CEL (Service Engine Soon) light came on in my daughter's Nissan Versa a few days after she bought it, and in her case, it appears to have been a loose/improperly tightened gas cap. I re-seated the cap, and after a few miles, the light went out, and that was 4 years and 75,000 miles ago. The car's owner's manual discusses it on page 2-12.

    I'm guessing that was the cause, but I won't testify or swear to it.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    The indie shop that services my Jeep doesn't charge me to read the codes on my TJ or Mazda

    Pulling codes isn't diagnostics and shouldn't be represented as such. The Free Diagnostics claims are at best a bait and switch. Pull the code for free and then guess a price and/or sell the real diagnostic fee. Or worse they may actually be expecting their techs to spend a legitimate amount of time that they ultimately won't be compensated for in one way or another. The trouble with that is eventually you lose the technician.
  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490
    Pulling codes isn't diagnostics and shouldn't be represented as such. The Free Diagnostics claims are at best a bait and switch. Pull the code for free and then guess a price and/or sell the real diagnostic fee.

    Sounds to me more like a way to sell non-needed air filters, etc., probably at inflated prices.
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Ahhh- trick question! Gotta luv 'em.

    Well, it may not have a separate cap, but it does look like it has something (neoprene rubber???) on the inside of the filler neck to seal off the intake orifice. So in that sense, it has a built in cap. Is that supposed to be better than a separate gas cap? Less chance for the consumer to get it wrong?

    So, instead of "reseat the gas cap", how 'bout "jiggle the seal"? Would have to see one in person.

    BTW, I did see where they sell after-market regular-style gas caps for Escapes.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    So, instead of "reseat the gas cap", how 'bout "jiggle the seal"? Would have to see one in person.


    http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=28320
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    Thanks for the link, but a graphic would have been nice.

    Sounds needlessly complicated, particularly the part about sensing the size of the tube being inserted, IMM. A solution in search of a problem, so to speak.

    What ever happened to KISS?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    What ever happened to KISS?

    http://www.kissonline.com/ :P
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    The disclaimer at the end pretty much summed it up... When in doubt, follow the instruction found in the owner's manual.

    Was there any part of the article were a suggestion was made that the manual doesn't have to be followed exactly? You can read the lines, or inbetween them, just look to see if any doubts are suggested.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    Well, that sure brought this all to a screeching halt. :) Nobody wanted to agree with that, but you can't find what you need to disagree with it there either. It's important to note that I've seen a little drama play out a few times once a problem really does arrise.

    Advertising suggests that a given product meets a vehicles specs.
    Customer, shop, or tech believing the advertising uses the product and if no problems occur, nobody cares. But when a problem eventually does occur, the manufacturer of the product simply points out that they had that disclaimer in their literature. Customer, shop, or tech ends up holding the bag. (Often-times it's the manufacturer of the vehicle anyway)

    Busiris states it as "When in doubt, follow the instruction found in the owner's manual. " Meanwhile in the article you find this;

    The language in some owner's manuals suggests that using an oil other than the one specified by the manufacturer will void the car's warranty. This is not the case, says Thom Smith, Valvoline's vice president of branded lubricant technology

    These three paragrapghs are easy to read and not catch all of the details.

    "If a customer uses a non-licensed engine oil that is simply ILSAC GF-5 quality, they will not enjoy the benefits of using a Dexos-licensed product," Read says. Those benefits could include better low-temperature performance, cleaner pistons and better aeration performance, he says. "This could be especially important as the engine oil ages."

    Read's case for Dexos sounds compelling, but Valvoline's Smith isn't buying it.

    "Our SynPower 5W-20, 5W-30 and DuraBlend 5W-30 went through all the Dexos testing and passed all the requirements," Smith says. "But we felt that carrying the Dexos name was not providing the consumer with any value."


    At the same time this article was being written, Thom Smith of Valvoline has a quote in Lubes'n'Greases. Research his quote there regarding dexos and see if it is consistent with what was written here.

    Lets repeat one of those paragraphs.
    Our SynPower 5W-20, 5W-30 and DuraBlend 5W-30 went through all the Dexos testing and passed all the requirements,"

    What is GM's pumping requirements specification for any approved product at -35f?
    What is Valvolines pumping specification at -35f for the products listed?

    From earlier in the article;

    GM distanced itself from the API guidelines with the introduction of Dexos. According to GM, the Dexos oil specification will decrease harmful piston deposits by up to 28 percent and improve fuel efficiency by up to 0.3 percent compared to the older ILSAC GF-4 specifications.

    Then later on there was this.

    Smith says. "But we felt that carrying the Dexos name was not providing the consumer with any value."

    "Dexos" isn't a name. dexos1 is a specification.

    Now moving back to the top of the article;

    The API and ILSAC standards are the baseline, says Timothy Miranda, senior engineer for race oil and field testing for Castrol Lubricants, which manufactures oil for automakers such as Audi, BMW and Volkswagen. Automakers are free to improve upon the standards as long as they meet the minimum requirements.

    The funny thing however is to meet certain European specs some oils in fact do not meet ILSAC, which is OK provided a consumer doesn't choose a product for their car that does.

    Now, don't just take what I have written here and say, yea or nay. Research the data and find out for yourself. If you have trouble I can provide some links for references. Keep in mind Valvoline has a lot of great products that meet the specs for many vehicles. This is about what a given customer needs to know in order to choose a product correctly.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,279
    Sometimes this "oil talk" reminds me of medieval monks arguing about how many angels could fit on the head of a pin.

    Who worries these days about "28% fewer piston deposits" or oil flow at -35F?

    I mean, when you start your car in the morning, are you really all thinking "oh, man, I hope the oil I put in last week will prevent piston deposits over the next 400,000 miles". :P

    You open the owner's manual, you read what it says, you put that into your engine, and you're done for the next 10 years---that's the experience of the vast number of drivers of modern automobiles.

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    edited February 2013
    Well, that sure brought this all to a screeching halt.

    Not sure what kind of response you were looking for. This is just an article on a consumer (automotive) web site. It's not meant to be a product specification, or a contract, or a statement of work (SOW).

    The language in some owner's manuals suggests that using an oil other than the one specified by the manufacturer will void the car's warranty. This is not the case, says Thom Smith, Valvoline's vice president of branded lubricant technology

    I fully agree with that. Owner's manuals are full of terms like "recommend", which in my mind means it's not required. If it's required, than the owners manual ought to say so, with wording such as "the owner SHALL use 5W-20 oil that is labeled to meet the Dexos specification", or "it is required that the owner...".
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    You open the owner's manual, you read what it says, you put that into your engine, and you're done for the next 10 years---that's the experience of the vast number of drivers of modern automobiles.

    Totally agree, and exactly what does it say?

    From Search Auto Parts.com....

    The 2011 Buick Lucerne owner's manual contains this warning: "Use only engine oil that is approved to the dexos specification or an equivalent engine oil of the appropriate viscosity grade. Engine oils approved to the dexos specification will show the dexos symbol on the container. Failure to use the recommended engine oil or equivalent can result in engine damage not covered by the vehicle warranty."

    Greg Martin, director, policy and Washington communications, General Motors Corp., says if a GM car owner does not use motor oil that meets the dexos spec, GM would be free not to cover repairs for those issues under the new vehicle or parts limited warranties. "This is true across the industry," he adds. "This has been true for years. This is legal under Magnuson-Moss."


    The trick now is exactly what is or is not "equivelant"?

    Who worries these days about "28% fewer piston deposits" or oil flow at -35F?

    Oh just GM, Ford, Honda and Chrysler to name a few......
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,582
    Oil flow at -35F? Yeah, that's something I'm concerned about, too, along with at least another 100,000 of us sub-arctic (and arctic) dwellers.

    The cold flow properties of lubricants ranks #1 on my list when looking for compatible fluids for my vehicles.
    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • srs_49srs_49 Posts: 1,394
    equivalent engine oil of the appropriate viscosity grade.

    The trick now is exactly what is or is not "equivelant"?

    Seems to me GM left the door open to using a non-Dexos branded oil.
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    Oil flow at -35F? Yeah, that's something I'm concerned about, too

    Let's keep this focused on the specs. It is a very important specification for GM, as well as Ford and Chrysler approved products. GM and Ford have reduced bearing clearances and can prove that at cold temperatures during start-up the shearing stress on the oil can fracture the oil molecules, rendering the oil unable to perform all of its other requirements. By reducing the pumping requirements the oil is protected from this stress.

    So again, its a very important specification. Do the Valvoline products listed meet that requirement of the specification or not?
  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 1,526
    Seems to me GM left the door open to using a non-Dexos branded oil

    Some want you to think that way, but that isn't what it said.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 6,674
    edited February 2013
    It's not a big deal to me; I run LL-01 oil in my BMWs while they are under warranty, after which I might change to a different oil. The LL-01 Mobil 1 0W-40 seems to work well in M42 engine in my 318ti- but less so in the M54 in my son's X3 2.5. I run Rotella T6 in it, and based on UOAs the T6 appears to working just as well or better at 150,000 miles. Per Blackstone Labs:

    Universal averages for BMW's M54 I-6 are based on about 6,400 miles on the oil. You ran this oil 8,352 miles, and wear read at or below average across the board. That's the best indication we know of that an engine is in good mechanical shape internally.

    Note that every oil I've run in that truck shows a TBN of 1.0 or less by 10,000 miles. So much for following the SI system's @16,000 mile OCI...

    2009 328i / 2004 X3 2.5/ 1995 318ti Club Sport/ 1975 2002A/ 2007 Mazdaspeed 3/ 1999 Wrangler/ 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,279
    edited February 2013
    Neither GM nor any other automaker can void your warranty because you can't prove which oil you put in---first of all, GM or any other automaker would have to prove that the engine failed due to an oil problem. If the oil filler tube is found lying n the bottom of the pan, or the oil pan baffles are broken, or the head is cracked, then GM has the problem to explain that this was due to the oil not being spec'd to 35F below? Yeah, that'll really fly in court.

    Fractured oil molecules at sub-zero temperatures? Now who on earth has to deal with that except NASA maybe? Does anyone really think that 99.99999% of the world has to even worry about this?

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,296
    An old friend of mine from my Anchorage days used Amsoil synthetic and changed that every 3,500 miles "because that's when most of the molecular tails broke off".

    And this talk about "You open the owner's manual, you read what it says, you put that into your engine, and you're done for the next 10 years".

    I'll have you know I change my oil once a year whether it needs it or not. Usually. :P

    Next, GM will be putting nanobits in the Dexos stuff so they can sample the oil and scan for the identifiers.

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

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