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Maintenance & Repair Costs

cameronscamerons Posts: 1
One thing I didn't realize before purchasing a 1999 A6 (std) with 55k miles was the Edmunds site left out in it's maintenance information was the fact that the timing belt needed to be replaced at 60k miles. I went to the Audi dealership in Tampa, Fl and they indicated it would be $1100 to do the 60K interval. Wow, what a blow for getting such a deal on the car. The normal hourly rate at this location is $90 /hour. No, that does not include a girl and a room.
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Comments

  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Mitchell Mechanical Labor Estimating Guide:
    Timing belt - R&R
    1996
    All:
    2.5 hours
    Add:
    .2 seal, camshaft
    .2 seal, crankshaft
    .2 tensioner

    Total labor is 3.1 hours. The parts must be gold plated.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    changing the timing belt does slightly complicate the i$$ue, but I'd sure like to know if the following services are covered in the 60,000 package ::=

    (*) rotating rocks in tire treads

    (*) wash and fluff-dry all cottonwood seeds in air filter

    (*) remove, clean, lubricate, and replace all bolts

    (*) align all window stickers

    if this is something like a $800 timing belt change due to parts removal, etc. and $300 of plugs, wires, lubrications, and gyrations, that's one thing. but a lot of "dealer recommended service packages" also contain items not in the carmaker's recommended service list, some of which are traditionally laughers in their own right. and yes, parts are often more expensive than they would seem... until you remember that you replace fewer of them and further apart these days.

    with that labor estimate alcan found in mitchell's guides, I'm more than a little surprised at the final price.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    it just occurred to me... three or so hours of labor in the $140 to $180 an hour labor range would do nasty things to the price of a timing belt change, wouldn't it? that would not be a shocker to find those kind of labor rates in a factory-trained german dealer's shop, the fargo Benz dealer was asking that kind of per-hour in the late 1980s.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    still only brings you to $600 or so for the swap-out. More than $1000 sounds WAY high.

    OTOH, what about also replacing the fancy German water pump at the same time, as many places commonly recommend? That could easily bring you to $1000 at German parts prices.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • jodarjodar Posts: 51
    Given the reported high cost of parts, has anyone purchased parts say, online or at some discount auto parts store, and had a mechanic/friend/aquaintence install them? I can't imagine these cars are so mechanically complex that they are that difficult to work on.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    is a lot smaller for German brands than Japanese or domestic brands. It may be that for this job there is no aftermarket alternative. I wonder if there might be a dealer willing to sell parts at wholesale on-line, though.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • haspelbeinhaspelbein Posts: 227
    I know that Audi is relatively high, but Mercedes is not nearly as high as one would expect. Simply splitting them into "German vs. Japanese" doesn't quite cut it.

    I'd pay roughly $120 in parts if I wanted to replace the water pump on my '96 E-Class. It would also be a relatively easy fix, as it sits right at the top of the engine and is accessory belt driven, thereby very easily accessible. Definitely a DIY job.

    Most of the stuff I had to replace so far (window regulator, belts, bulbs, battery) have not been outrageously expensive.

    Parts availability also depends on the manufacturer. I've had to wait for BMW parts, but had plenty of choices for Mercedes. Even the dealer parts were often competetively priced.

    Mercedes will get really expensive if one talks about a complete engine take-down or engine replacement. I believe a replacement engine would run me close to $8K. However, I would consider that a very unlikely event.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    with buying parts for German cars has been for BMW 3-series cars, and those are expensive and not always available. Thank you for the reminder not to generalize to all German brands! :-)

    I have heard that Audi is expensive though - the one Audi I owned I sold quickly - the things I did have to replace were much more expensive than they would have been on a Toyota (window regulators for one)

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • haspelbeinhaspelbein Posts: 227
    I paid $126 for mine, after figuring out with the help of parts person at the MB dealer, that I would be able to salvage the motor by using a '99 model year part instead of the '96. (Otherwise, I would have paid over $200.)

    I have since found out that the price of $126 was high, and that people have bought this part for as low as $80. Ah well, it was a kind of emergency.

    Yes, Audi seems to be expensive. A friend of mine owns an Audi convertible and had to pay $400 (part only) for a replacement rear window. I believe I'd only pay around $140 for the replacement on my Z3.
  • Kirstie@EdmundsKirstie@Edmunds Posts: 10,675
    Anyone mind if I change the name of this discussion to "Maintenance Costs?" I can see it as a long-termer with a more descriptive discussion title.

    kirstie_h
    Roving Host & Future Vehicles Host

    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    no-one minds! :-)

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    but no complaints. the old saw goes, "fluids are cheap. engines and transmissions aren't."
  • jodarjodar Posts: 51
    For those of you who change your own motor oil. Do any of you use synthetics? And do any of you deviate from the recommended oil weight? I've seen 0w30 recommended but its hard to find. 5w30 seems to all right and Mobil 1 has an 0w30 weight that is supposedly a 'European blend', which I assume would be all right for Audis.

    I'm curious as to whether or not the Audi dealerships use synthetics when changing oil during the service intervals. Does anyone know?
  • Kirstie@EdmundsKirstie@Edmunds Posts: 10,675
    Hi jodar - your question about oil is more likely to be seen & answered in one of our existing topics on engine oil. We've got Engine Oil - A slippery subject Part 2, and a Synthetic motor oil discussion, both of which are very active.

    This discussion is more for members who are looking to check out maintenance costs.

    kirstie_h
    Roving Host & Future Vehicles Host

    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • brake4mebrake4me Posts: 13
    I have a 2001 Dodge Dakota, 4.7 engine 4x4

    Can anyone tell me service is needed during the 30,000 mile maintenance/tune up.

    I would think oil and transmission change, air filter. Is there a need to change axle fluid on front and rear axle?

    Dealer wants to charge $450 which I think is high just to do basics and check fluid, belts, etc.

    Any feed back appreciated.

    Brake4me
  • lotech1lotech1 Posts: 112
    A Dodge dealer quoted me somewhere in that neighborhood for the 30K maintenance. My other vehicle cost $134 for the same service at another dealership. I don't remember every service item but I priced them item by item. Spark plugs, auto transmission band adjustment were included.

    I agree... it's too much for what they are doing.
  • armtdmarmtdm Posts: 2,057
    Look in the maintenance section of your manual. Even if you do the severe schedule it is doubtful that all of the items the dealer wants to do at 30000 are needed. Only do what is reguired in the manual never ever say do the 30,000 mile service. Most of that are inspections, not actual work. You can inspect items yourself. Only ask for and pay for actual repair, replacement items that are listed in the owners manual for severe service at 30000 mile interval. Today, plugs are usually 60,000-100,000 miles intervals.
  • lotech1lotech1 Posts: 112
    Dodge lists plugs and auto transmission band adjustment at the 30k interval as I recall. Don't have my Dodge anymore or I would look it up.
  • lotech1lotech1 Posts: 112
    Part Description Part Cost
    Automatic transmission filter(s) $ 32.70
    Automatic transmission fluid $ 11.20
    Engine oil $ 11.25
    Oil filter $ 5.70
    Spark plugs $ 21.60
    Total Estimated Parts Cost $ 82.45
     

    Labor Action Item Labor Cost
    Inspect/replace Air filter $ 2.25
    Adjust Automatic transmission bands $ 62.04
    Replace Automatic transmission filter(s) $ 16.91
    Change Automatic transmission fluid $ 28.20
    Inspect Brake lines, hoses & connections $ 1.12
    Inspect & adjust fluid level Coolant $ 2.82
    Change Engine oil $ 11.28
    Inspect Exhaust system $ 2.82
    Replace Oil filter $ 5.64
    Inspect/replace PCV valve $ 5.64
    Replace Spark plugs $ 39.48
    Check level Transmission fluid $ 1.12
    Rotate Wheels & tires $ 16.91
    Total Estimated Labor Cost $ 196.27
     

    Total Estimated Costs
    Total Estimated Parts Cost For Your Area $ 82.45
    Total Estimated Labor Cost For Your Area $ 196.27
    Total Estimated Cost (excluding tax)* $ 278.72

    In addition to the procedures for each indicated mileage interval, Dodge has identified other service operations to be performed at calendar intervals. To view these operations and their estimated cost, click on Additional Procedures.
    *This Total Estimated Cost includes the preventive maintenance items recommended by Dodge. The facility that services your vehicle may perform different, greater, or fewer procedures that can affect the cost you incur. For example, engine oil change and filter replacement are commonly performed by dealer and independent service facilities at special prices. These "special price" services do not typically include all of the additional procedures recommended by Dodge at each service interval.

    Dealer wanted $425 to do the stuff listed in the maintenance manual.
  • armtdmarmtdm Posts: 2,057
    Their recommendations (based upoin my own vehicles) are not engine or model specific. Unse your OWNER'S Manual. Why looks somewhere else. At 30,000 miles it si under warranty. Forget the inspections. Note that they have change tranny flid, cnage filter then a charge for checking id level. Come on. 30,000 miles, oil if within your schedule, tranny fluid, air filter, then check manual for plugs, other filters etc. Not much needs replacing today at 30,000 miles.
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