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Repair Shop Woes

shesfyneshesfyne Posts: 32
edited March 2014 in Pontiac
My 97 Bonneville went to our regular mechanic at an independent shop for a squealing noise that we thought to be a pulley. He replaced the pulley and a belt but the sound persisted. On second look, he remarked that the water pump seemed to be making the noise. Knowing that was replaced and warrantied by the dealership, he suggested we go back there and have it fixed under warranty. We had also noticed a mysterious coolant leak that appeared to be leaking internally. Into the dealership it went, where they concluded that yes, the pump was bad, but that there was a problem with the intake manifold as well. The work was performed to the tune of $1100, including charging for an oil filter and oil as well as replacing the coolant. A day later the squealing is back. Back the car goes and they tighten the pulleys and clean the belts. 3 days later there is this noise. A noise even someone that knows nothing about cars recognizes. The oil gage was fluctuating, and the check engine light came on. I called my husband and he came to work, checked the oil, full. We tried to limp it to our mechanic, when the engine seized after pulling out of my parking spot. Towed it to our mechanic who found metal shavings in the oil pan. Towed it to the dealership where they concluded that.......
1. The problem was in the 4th cylinder, minute trace of coolant had leaked in there *previous to them doing the work.
2. There was no oil deprivation.
3. Although it could have been diagnosed during the manifold work, it would have been cost prohibitive as the engine would have to have been torn down and some sort of light/scope needed to be used.
4. They'd like permission to further tear down the engine to decide which scenario will be out fate. If only the cylinder is affected, it would be a $3000 rebuild, if the block is affected it requires a new $5400 GM engine, at our expense, but of course since they are *sympathetic, they'll try to help us out with the labor costs.

Went back to our regular mechanic and described the situation. His feeling is, besides the obvious, there has never been a problem with this engine until 3 days after they worked on it, but that they most likely messed up a seal. That when they replaced all the oil and coolant, there should not have been any coolant left to get into a cylinder. That coolant in a cylinder would have acted very quickly, this wasn't a long term thing. And lastly, they should have given us the option to do a more thorough repair and tear down the engine to look for this problem. This was never mentioned to us. We're at a stand still now. The car is only valued at $7300, but was worth much more to me, as I can't replace it. We sincerely believe that this was a direct result of the work they did. We've contacted our DMV resolution center in hopes that we can get some satisfaction. Any thoughts on the validity of their claims..or ours, and another way to approach this?
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Comments

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    You really haven't told us what happened to the engine. A little coolant in a cylinder would just burn off. If there is "no oil starvation" how exactly did an engine with hundreds of HP suddenly come to a stop.

    If the engine was "hydraulically locked", that is, if the cylinder filled up with water overnight, and then the piston tried to compress it, yeah, that will stop an engine. However, your mechanic found metal shavings, so that eliminates hydraulic lock.

    Based on the slim information provided, I'd say that your manifold had been leaking water into the engine oil for some time, nobody checked the dipstick for some time, and the coolant eventually destroyed the bearing to that cylinder. If this is true, a break down of the engine would show all the bearings in distress due to immersion in coolant.

    God only knows who is to blame. The fatal error you made was having two different people working on it, and so legally this gets everybody off the hook but YOU.

    I don't see where you have any choice but to do a teardown. The car isn't worth much as it is anyway, and if that engine is full of coolant and bearing damage, then it's your ticket and if it's just one cylinder hydraulically locked (the connecting rod will be BENT) that's probably the dealer's ticket. Or, if they find gobs of silicone sealant in the oil galleys, and this sealant is the same stuff as they used on the manifold, then that is DEFINITELY their ticket.

    You should be there for the tear down and ask immediately to view the oil pump pickup screen for sealant debris.

    Good luck. This is a mess.
  • Based on the slim information provided, I'd say that your manifold had been leaking water into the engine oil for some time, nobody checked the dipstick for some time, and the coolant eventually destroyed the bearing to that cylinder. If this is true, a break down of the engine would show all the bearings in distress due to immersion in coolant.

    >>>>
    The dipstick was checked faithfully, there wasn't ever any evidence of unusual oil consumption.
    At this point without the tear down, they're saying that since coolant is not compressible, the stroke of cylinder #4 caused damage to the rod and crankshaft end. They're stating that although it could of been diagnosed..they felt it would have been cost prohibitive as the engine would have needed to be disassembled and a micrometer used to check the tolerances on the rod bearings. This option was never presented to us previous to the engine seizing. I'm thinking it would have been a lot cheaper than replacing the engine. Further,our regular mechanic had replaced our belt and pulley months ago, the problem noise re-occurred only recently. He didn't do any work on this current problem, only looked under the hood, and determined that it was the waterpump, and directed us back to the dealer. So I'm not sure that having someone work on the car months ago can point the blame in that direction. And lastly, the appointment was made a month ago, when we noticed a small decrease in coolant. Besides the whirring pulley noise I wasn't having any symptoms of engine damage, that is until the manifold work was done, actually the second time the car was driven after the manifold work was done. I also recently became aware that the TSB, which they told us they weren't aware of, after the work was done, prescribes replacing the plenum and the lower intake manifold. They only replaced the plenum and the upper, even after we pointed out the TSB to them.
    You still think it's just a coincidence? We're having a hard time grasping that.
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    if there isn't much agitation of the oil in the pan, you might not have stirred the mess up and gotten the milky bubbly stuff on the dipstick that immediately should make you call a tow truck. might not even have been enough water-based [non-permissible content removed] in the sump to cause it... or... you might have had a micro-leak for a while that turned into a leak at the manifold or the head with one long drive that ran the engine a little hot in the wrong place. especially if a piece of gasketing or glue covered up a water gallery.

    to mike the bearings with plastigage requires pulling the engine, flipping it upside down after draining down the oil, pulling the oil pan off, pulling the bearing caps off (preferably one at a time to avoid the crank shifting and possibly doing the seals in,) cleaning the lube off the bearing caps and crank, and then gauging the bearing. do the gauge step 4 to 8 times, depending on the cylinder count. probably into the $600-900 range without doing anything else, just gauging the bearings on the crankshaft, and you're without the car for a day.

    if they suspect rod wear against the crank bars, eight more pull and test cycles while the engine is open... and in a case like this, it would be a bad choice to NOT mike the rod clearances as well.
  • to mike the bearings with plastigage requires pulling the engine, flipping it upside down after draining down the oil, pulling the oil pan off, pulling the bearing caps off (preferably one at a time to avoid the crank shifting and possibly doing the seals in,) cleaning the lube off the bearing caps and crank, and then gauging the bearing. do the gauge step 4 to 8 times, depending on the cylinder count. probably into the $600-900 range without doing anything else, just gauging the bearings on the crankshaft, and you're without the car for a day.

    if they suspect rod wear against the crank bars, eight more pull and test cycles while the engine is open... and in a case like this, it would be a bad choice to NOT mike the rod clearances as well.



    >>>>>>>>

    I really do appreciate the replies. Can you do me a favor, and talk to me like I'm a six year old? I'm regurgitating a lot of info to you that I've kept in my copious notes, and frankly I don't understand all that I've even told you. I'm starting to get it, because I'm a sharp woman , but I need some clarification.
    Are you saying that gaging the bearings on the crankshaft would not have been something that should have been offered after discovering the leak in the manifold? I understand your point about keeping the car for a day, and it made me laugh because I had a first appt. of the day on a Monday and the car finally got looked at on a Thursday. And are you also saying that the reason it *may have been an immediate reaction to the work done is that a piece of gasketing or glue that they used to reseal, may have covered up the water gallery? That seems to be what our mechanic suspects, but he wasn't as clear as you've been.

    And this last part at the bottom..does this pertain to my situation previous to the engine seizing..or now that it has to be torn down? In another words are you saying this should be done now or should have been done then?

    "if they suspect rod wear against the crank bars, eight more pull and test cycles while the engine is open... and in a case like this, it would be a bad choice to NOT mike the rod clearances as well."

    Thank you both for taking a minute to think about this. I'm frustrated as an intelligent person that I don't understand enough to even question something that I think is questionable. The fact that they're offering to refund the initial $1100 for the work done on the waterpump and manifold made me think they feel some responsibility in this.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    they must feel they did something wrong. There aren't many businesses that will throw a grand at you just because they feel like it. Push the issue. Have them replace the engine, with you paying parts at their cost and them covering the labor. That's a fair deal, considering the shop that replaced the water pump should've done a more thorough checkout before shipping the car.
  • As to what they're willing to do. After asked several times what helping us out with cost meant, the Service manager said he would deduct the 1100 off the engine job and do the parts as close to cost as he could and help us on the labor. So vague, and when that was pointed out, he said he couldn't absorb all the cost of labor, and couldn't really estimate how much work would be involved. It makes me uneasy leaving a service arrangement open ended like that. Not to mention that's was how we got to the original 1100, they called us to say the manifold job would be 600, but never mentioned the additional 400 they were charging for the labor on the waterpump, even though that was a warranty item. Apparently only the part was warranteed, and since it was done by another GM dealer, and not this one, the labor wasn't included. We were surprised the bill climbed to 1100 when we picked up the car.The original Pontiac dealer we purchased the car from has gone out of business and this dealership has absorbed all their warranty work.
    Believe it or not, we generally aren't saps. No one is more surprised than us to find ourselves in this position. This car will be the death of me,2 transmissions, 3 alternators, 3 serpentine belts, 2 waterpumps and countless small repairs. I really want to paste it together and unload it, but already I am having anxiety about sticking someone else with this potential lemon.I guess I'll do what I did with my last lemon, a 95 Concorde with 3 transmissions in two years. I traded it to a dealer at a loss because I knew they sold their used cars as certified. At least the new buyer got a warranty. I thought I was going from a lemon to a reliable car, this engine and tranny had been around successfully for years.I'm starting to feel like Charlie Brown, and GM is Lucy yanking the football away from me. ; )
  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    Sit down with them before they start on your car and agree to everything.

    It's like - OK, I'm paying this, you're paying that....and MY ESTIMATE WILL NOT INCREASE WITHOUT MY AUTHORIZATION - NOT A PENNY.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Why are you dealing with the dealer?
    Is your vehicle still under warranty?
    If it isn't, tell the dealer bye-bye and go to a reputable independant shop.
    I have read and re-read all of the posts in this thread and the thing that knaws at me is the fact it sounds [from what information we have been given] that they may have not done the job right.
    If it were me, I would explain to them that since they didn't perform the repair according to GM's sepcifications, then it is their baby. They should absorb most of the costs in the repairs.
    It is their responsibility as a dealer to utilize the TSBs that GM provides them and that the updated intake gasket is a common and well known problem. I've personally had to have mine replaced. So it isn't something that isn't well known. If they will not work with you on this, I would NOT let them do any work to your vehicle. Let your independant mechanic do the repairs.
    You decide who you are going to give your money to, who do you feel more confident giving your money to? Call the GM customer service line and complain about that dealer. They may tell you there is not much they can do, but by first talking to the dealer, then contact GM's customer service, you can now call the BBB or State's Attorney General or Consumer Affairs and make a formal complaint, should the dealer not correct the problem.

    I also agree with zueslewis, get a firm estimate. When or if you do ahve anyone do the work, make sure that the work order has the total estimated costs and you sign it. The work order is then a binding agreement and they are subject to the terms of the law.
    BTW, got your e-mail.
  • Hope you didn't mind the email. Unless they cover the repair in full, we have no intention of letting them do the work. We're still in the beginning negotiations. We took someone's advice and listened cordially to the way the Service manager wanted to handle it and told him we needed to think on it and get back to him, allowing us to become a little more educated in what the actual problem was. And yes, I agree as did my husband, after you so kindly provided the tsb, that they didn't in fact perform the repair as per GM's suggestion. Something we had suspected, but hadn't confirmed until tonight. We haven't told them what we want yet. Which is a new engine on their dime. Having had time to think about this and hear a few opinions has brought a lot of questions to mind that we weren't prepared to ask within the first conversation. A lot of what they told us flat out doesn't make sense. We're feeling much better prepared to argue our case with them, and take it to GM and the other resources you've mentioned. Given my choice, I'd rather have my own mechanic do it as he's always been honest and fair with us. But naturally, I don't want to have to pay for something that I really don't believe is our obligation. We're supposed to contact the SM on Tuesday and let him know how we'd like to proceed, so I'll fill you in on the outcome.
    You all have been real kind.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    I'm still wondering about the diagnosis. A "hydraulic lock" takes place instantaneously. One stroke of the piston and then you're pretty much done.

    A seized bearing, however, is the result of a more gradual, cumulative disaster.

    So what I was suggesting is that if the rod is physically bent, you've got the dealer in a stronger case than if a bearing seized.

    The reason I argue this is that a hydraulic lock could have easily occurred after the manifold job, but a bearing seizure due to coolant leak would have taken quite some time to occur, and thus probably was existant prior to the trip to the dealer.

    Anyway, based on what's been presented, that's how it looks to me. Your comment that the squealing occurred both before and after manifold repair suggests (but does not prove by any means) a prior distress to the engine.

    Opatience, I think the age of the car puts it way out of warranty, doesn't it? It's a 1997, so at least 5 years of use,
  • saying it's a bearing seizure. I believe the squealing noise was unrelated to the engine problem, in the sense that it was related to a pulley and coolant that got onto a belt. I say that because that noise ended on the second trip back after the manifold work, and they tightened the pulleys and cleaned the belts. The next time I drove the car there was no squealing, I parked it at work, went to pull it out of the parking spot and heard this horrendous clunking noise, like metal on metal.
    They are saying that the bearing damage occurred over a long period of time. But, if there was coolant in my oil, why when they changed it didn't it present like a milk shake? And if it did, though they're saying it didn't, why wouldn't they assume that there was coolant seepage into a cylinder? More to the point, why wasn't it burning off, and smoking? They're saying that it was an undetectable amount of coolant in the cylinder, wouldn't trace amounts like that just burn off?
    It's long out of warranty. The only reason we went to a dealership was for the replacement on the waterpump as it had a lifetime guarantee.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Didn't mind the e-mail.
    The pproblem I am having with this is.....
    An undetectable amount of coolant in the cylinder wouldn't do anything more than create a problem with the O2 sensor. I am stuck on their comment about the coolant in the cylinder. How did they propose that the coolant got into the cylinder?
    There is no coolant passage that would allow the coolant to leak into the cylinder. It would either leak externally or into the intake valley and into the oil pan. Unless the head gasket was blown between the coolant passage and the cylinder, it ain't happening.

    Of all of the intake problems I have seen on these engines, the intake always leaked coolant to the outside of the engine, not internally.

    Now, let's look at the problem.
    You brought your vehicle in for a specific problem. They check out the vehicle and found that the intake gasket was leaking. Which tells me it was an external leak. Which is common with that engine. But they failed to notice coolant in the oil, if as they stated that is what took out the bearing?
    Either way, you brought it in to be repaired. This did not happen. While I could not definitely say for sure whether they did or did not do the job correctly without actually seeing the engine and the damage, it does seem to me that someone definitely did not do all of their job correctly.

    You see, it takes coolant very little time to take out a bearing. What happens is that the coolant cannot withstand the pressure in the bearing and cavitates or implodes. When this happens, it is like exploding small chunks of the bearing off of it. It doesn't take long for coolant or water to destoy a bearing.
  • You see, it takes coolant very little time to take out a bearing. What happens is that the coolant cannot withstand the pressure in the bearing and cavitates or implodes. When this happens, it is like exploding small chunks of the bearing off of it. It doesn't take long for coolant or water to destoy a bearing.
    >>>>>>>

    That's what my husband is saying. It didn't make sense to him either. It's good to hear confirmation of it.
  • While I've got your ear, unfortunately, I'm now in the market for new wheels. Trying to avoid the mommymobile my husband tried to talk me into before this lemon. My track record is weakening his faith in my car choices. We had looked at a Suzuki GVXL7 before the Bonneville. I liked it, I'm 5 ft, he didn't, he's 6'2. Well, he's gotten himself a big old F150, so his comfort in my car isn't my primary concern. All kidding aside, I heard they're fairly reliable. Do you share that opinion? I'm trying to avoid a minivan but want to appease him with the extra seating for all the neighbor kids we've seem to have inherited. I'm done paying big bucks for cars from here on out, I think. This seemed like a decent car for the money, a little fun and probably won't have me in the shop every month. Of course I said that with the past two cars. But I'm thinking maybe I'm just not cut out for a domestic car.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Okay, I'm following this just fine, shesfyne and Opatience. Still sticking on this one point, though---that bearing failure due to coolant in the oil still requires a substantial amount of coolant in the oil, even if the bearing damage itself can occur quickly.

    Now if, on this engine, there is no way a defective intake manifold can cause coolant to entire the oil supply (do I have that right so far?), then we really cannot, QED, hold the dealer or the other mechanic responsible in a direct sense.

    I really wonder if anybody carefully checked the dipstick during this entire process.? It could be that in the desire to correct various symptoms, (squeeling, excternal coolant leaks, etc) the real disease got overlooked and the patient died (but the operation was a success!!)

    In summary therefore, I can't quite concede that there was enough coolant to wipe out a bearing but not enough to show on a dipstick.
    That seems to me a glaring inconsistency.
  • In summary therefore, I can't quite concede that there was enough coolant to wipe out a bearing but not enough to show on a dipstick.
    That seems to me a glaring inconsistency.
    >>>>>

    Yes! At this point the cause is elusive, but excessive coolant leakage into the oil without appearing on the stick seems inconsistent.
    And..I'm sticking to the point that the TSB prescribed replacement of the upper and lower manifold and the plenum. They stated they weren't aware of a TSB and only replaced the plenum, the upper and resealed the lower. Which seems a likely case for the hypothesis our mechanic suggested, which is some errant sealent caused the problem. Regardless, they didn't fix it correctly by their own admission when comparing the work order to the TSB.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    that bearing failure due to coolant in the oil still requires a substantial amount of coolant in the oil, even if the bearing damage itself can occur quickly.

    I would have to agree. The amount it would take would be easily detectable in the oil.

    This engine can leak coolant into the oil. It is possible, but I have personally never seen it happen on these engines. They usually leak externally.

    The thing is, if coolant went the the system, an autopsy of the engine would show coolant contamination on ALL bearings, including the cam bearings. A good mechanic would be able to determine if coolant was indeeed the cause.

    Granted, this is all hypothetical from info provided, but we have all agreeed, that it would take a substantial amount to have a instantaneous failure of the bearing.
    Most coolant caused failures give you a pretty good warning and a check of the oil, it is very evident that there is coolant in the oil.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    This may be one of those unsolvable chicken and egg dilemmas, might it not?
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    Unfortunately, I think you may be right.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    " This is a mess"

    I agree. Having two seperate shops work on the car has put the owner in a tough place.

    It does sound like a short block is in order.
  • The thing is, if coolant went the the system, an autopsy of the engine would show coolant contamination on ALL bearings, including the cam bearings. A good mechanic would be able to determine if coolant was indeeed the cause.
    >>>>>>

    Luckily in NYS, DMV has a special investigation unit that follows up on consumer complaints about repairs. This is staffed by mechanics, that are investigators. We've had one look into our situation. He agrees that it doesn't appear right, the timing of the event. The dealership is also now changing their story to the hydra lock(sp?) theory. All this being said, no one has autopsied the engine. The investigator has asked us if we would be willing to pay for them( the dealership) to remove the top of the engine to take a look at it so he can make a better conclusion, while he is present. While we don't have an objection to the autopsy, we've decided to have it towed to an independent garage to have it done. It just makes good sense, as the dealership charges an exhoribitant hourly rate. And when it comes down to it, if we lose and have to pay out of pocket, it wouldn't be the dealership we had the work done at. So why should we pay to have them put it back together again only to drag it to another mechanic. Not to mention if we wind up in court, it makes better sense to us that an independent mechanic will have made the determination and hopefully make a statement to that fact. I guess even though DMV can make a ruling, they can't compel them to comply. But you then have that ruling to take with you to seek civil damages. Talk about stressful.
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    You know, I really wish this kind of thing didn't happen. It makes the whole mechanic's industry look bad. I'm sorry that you have to go thru all of this, but I can tell you that you have the support of mechanics who care. If you need help on this, you may e-mail me. (click on my profile)
    In my opinion, your decision to have a different shop do the teardown was the best decision. You are protecting your interest.
    Hydrolock wouldn't cause the metal shavings like you described. Pulling the head is fruitless, in my opinion, as seizure is usually bearing failure and IF the engine hydrolocked as they stated, then it would be obvious without pulling the head. All they would have to do is to pull the plugs and they'd know.
  • In my opinion, your decision to have a different shop do the teardown was the best decision. You are protecting your interest.
    Hydrolock wouldn't cause the metal shavings like you described. Pulling the head is fruitless, in my opinion, as seizure is usually bearing failure and IF the engine hydrolocked as they stated, then it would be obvious without pulling the head. All they would have to do is to pull the plugs and they'd know.
    >>>>>>>

    I do appreciate the offer, and I may take you up on it. Little do you know, but you've already been quite a help. One of the posts we exchanged was included in our complaint to DMV. It happened to be something the investigator referenced to me, while speaking on the phone. He said you made some good points, and that his peers agreed. So thanks for the kindness, past and present.

    Deb
  • The DMV investigator gave us a call. After speaking to quite a few individual garages and carrying our bearings around for their examination, he does feel that this warrants a closer look. He asked us if we would autopsy the engine with the dealership paying the tab. We spoke to the general manager, and he would like to bring this to an "amicable" conclusion, and they'd pick up the cost of the tear down. We were surprised that they offered and I'm getting the feeling that they genuinely believe they weren't responsible. We still feel they are, but it seems they're making an effort to actually find the cause. The tear down will be done with the investigator present, which is somewhat of a relief. I'd still feel better at an independent garage, but costs are mounting and I think we'd appear unreasonable. One thing the Inv. did mention, was that he sent our oil out to a lab. He's looking for Aluminum Oxide that is sometimes used for cleaning the engine surface. Apparently there's a TSB out that states it causes engine failure. He also said that you'll be able to see swirl marks if it was used, once the engine is opened up. I think it's a stretch as far as cause. I don't doubt they used it, because they weren't aware of the TSB regarding the manifold. But this was a quick engine failure, I doubt that cleaner was the cause. Keeping you up.

    Deb
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,712
    I'm glad to hear that things are looking better for you. I sent you some information.
    It probably won't help the situation, but may give you some insight.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    It's nice to see someone with your experience lending a hand.

    And I agree...stories like this do make the industry look bad which is unfortunate.

    The vast majority of shops are honest and know what they are doing.
  • Recapping. Manifold work was done, not according to TSB. Engine seized, from coolant that got into cylinder #4. We were told it was coincidental, and that they did not see any coolant upon doing the oil change as part of the manifold work. DMV investigator called in. He orders testing of the oil for a silicate that has been prohibited per TSB, and a tear down of the engine to further examine the problem, stating that he should also see swirl marks on the engine if the silicate was used. Nice enough guy..but seems passive, and lacking confidence, and I'll tell you why.
    The tear down occurs and he calls to tell us that it was inconclusive..but goes on to tell us the following.

    The mechanic that worked on the car no longer works there. But he did interview him separately from the mechanic that did the tear down.

    There was coolant in the oil found during the tear down. If the manifold job was done correctly, there shouldn't have been coolant in there, should there have been?

    There were swirl marks on the engine. When he inquired about them, they stated it was from a plastic scraper that they used, and showed him one. The mechanic that doesn't work there any longer said, he used a wire brush. The investigator said the marks weren't consistent with a wire brush.

    The mechanic that worked on the car said that there was at least a cup full of coolant in the oil when he drained it. (they originally told us there wasn't any) He said there was so much coolant that he filled and drained it twice. Which we don't believe because they charged us for everything under the sun, but only 5 qts. of oil.
    And more to the point..if he found this excessive amount of coolant, shouldn't there have been something further he should have done to check/clean the cylinders? Doesn't it stand to reason that if there's coolant in the oil, there's coolant in the cylinders?

    To us it seems pretty conclusive. But he said it's not, and wants to wait for the oil test and file his final report then.

    What do you think?
  • tbonertboner Posts: 402
    I dunno if the 3.8L is still essentially the same, but my intake manifold has the thermostat housing attached, so coolant does go through the intake manifold.

    One possibility is the coolant wasn't drained when the manifold was removed. If this was the case, any coolant spilled might enter the crankcase through the lifter valley between the cylinders, or perhaps even leak in through open valves into a cylinder.

    It is unlikely you would get coolant into the crankcase during a waterpump change, but I could see that happening if an intake manifold change done inproperly.

    But then proving it was done incorrectly is another, and more difficult issue.

    FWIW,

    TB
  • But then proving it was done incorrectly is another, and more difficult issue.
    >>>>>>

    Oh I hear this, loud and clear.

    For the sake of argument, lets say that the coolant did not get there as a direct result of the manifold repair. I'm not sure whether that is a true fact or not. But assuming it is, if they did indeed find coolant in the oil at the time of the manifold work, wasn't there something that could have, should have been done to save the cylinder?

    And, if in fact this was a pre-existing condition,occuring before the manifold work was done, as they're stating...how did they find coolant in the oil again during the autopsy, after they supposedly repaired the leak? Doesn't that point to the fact that the car left the garage after the manifold work, still leaking coolant?
  • swschradswschrad Posts: 2,171
    that's a very good point, which I hope you make to the master in this case for the DMV, because he seems hesitant to make a decision based on the posts.
This discussion has been closed.