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Maintenance & Repair Costs

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  • luciepluciep Posts: 3
    Since English is my second language; I am always happy when people correct my mistakes.
  • how do you ajust the bands on a automatic trans in a 69 cuda 318 motor
  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,425
    18 Feb 09

    CSK Auto, Inc.
    Corporate Headquarters
    645 East Missouri Avenue
    Suite 400
    Phoenix, Arizona 85012

    Attn: Warranty Claim Dept.

    Yesterday, my mechanic had to replace one of your EGR POS. Sensors on warrantee.

    I was charged and paid him $75.27 for his labor and am now petitioning you to reimburse that expense to me caused by your faulty part.

    Please send your check in the amount of $75.27 to me as follows:
    Encl: Repair Order #8599 & VISA payment copy

    Euphonium

    Reply from CKK Auto 16 March 09

    “We have a process available to our customers that request reimbursement for expenses incurred because of an alleged defective product. Simply take the alleged defective sensor, a copy of the receipts for your expenses and the proof of purchase to your local Checker Auto Parts store. Once there, ask the manager in charge to complete a “Customer Reimbursement Request” form and provide the manager with the copies of your receipts.

    You must have all items listed above in order to proceed with your claim. Once the claim is opened, the manufacturer will investigate your claim and we will notify you of the outcome in writing.

    My Reply

    6 April 9

    Senior Claim Administrator
    CSK Auto
    645 East Missouri Avenue, Suite 400
    Phoenix, AZ 85012-1373

    Claim Reimbursement Request #182148

    Dear Mr.

    Your first response itemized what you required be done to establish the claim. I followed your advice as close as I could,
    but it does not meet your approval.

    You letter of the 31 March 9 states: “At the time the EGR Valve was returned no mention was made to our employees that you wished to be reimbursed for expenses you may have incurred.”

    Where in the stores do you have posted your rules for returning defective parts?

    Had your part not been defective, it would not have been replaced. That it was replaced evidences that it was defective. I proved to you already with my letter of 18 Feb 9 that included the Repair Order # 8599 & copy of the Visa payment.

    The rules you cite for returning your defective parts are defective.
    What I did was what any reasonable and good faith customer would do.

    Unknown to me, my mechanic returned the defective part to “Pro Shop” and that is when it should have been tagged by store Manager Steve (?) so as to be tracked into your system. Your letter admits losing track of the defective part and that is not a customers fault.

    CSK Auto purchased the defective part and sold it to my mechanic for a profit, (markup). That profit you took from my mechanic is the profit that includes your responsibility to warrantee the part.

    As my mechanic is not in business of enforcing warranties of your products, he returned your faulty part so as to obtain a replacement.
    In that process, that particular EGR sensor was lost at your local store when it was returned to the store’s source.

    The Repair Order 8599 issued to you in my first letter, 18 Feb 9, that notes “replaced faulty EGR POS. Sensor on warrantee” is really sufficient evidence of your part being defective.

    Considering the above, I expect your check in the amount of $75.27 ASAP.

    Yours truly,

    “Euphonium”

    CSK Reply:
    The Customer Reimbursement Request that you filed with Schuck’s Auto Supply Store on March 23 regarding an EGR Valve has been approved for payment in the amount of $40 gift card.

    Before we can send you a check and gift card the enclosed Release of Liability must be signed by you and returned to CSK. When the signed Release of Liability is received at our office payment and gift card will be promptly sent to the address listed above.

    CSK Auto, Inc.
    Phoenix, AZ 85009


    The above applies to CHECKER Auto Parts: SCHUCKS Auto Supply: KRAGEN Auto Parts: and MURRAY’S

    PRO SHOP appears to be the Schuck’s department selling to repair shops.

    All of the above would not have taken place had the car been repaired by the local dealer who warrants his manufacturers parts.

    That the independent repairer profits by marking up the part he obtains does not seem to cause him to be responsible for the labor cost.

    This post is offered in the spirit of making others aware of CSK’s warranty program.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    That the independent repairer profits by marking up the part he obtains does not seem to cause him to be responsible for the labor cost.

    Or, seemingly, even resposible for knowing about the policy of the store where he bought the part so that he could be sure that the proper proceedures were followed so that his customer gets reimbursed.

    I ran into this same sort of thing where I independently discovered that my new tires came with a 12 month road hazard waranty from the manufacturer.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,025
    A tv reporter is hoping to talk with victims of automotive repair scams and ripoffs in the greater Seattle area. If you have a story to share, please email jfallon@edmunds.com no later than May 15, 2009 and be sure to note your daytime contact information and a few words about your experience.
    Thanks,
    Jeannine Fallon
    Corporate Communications
    Edmunds.com

    MODERATOR

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

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,425
    I don't know if the reporter considers SW WA in the greater Seattle area or not, but you can refer him to post 558 which relates how Schucks Auto Supply operates.
  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    Has anyone in the DC-MD-VA area purchased a VIP club membership from Sheehy? This membership costs $745 and includes lifetime oil changes, lifetime tire inspection and rotation, 50% off annual detailing, seasonal inspections, lifetime car washes w/ service, 5% off parts/accessories/service, service loaners for all maintenance services. How does this sound? Is it worth it when purchasing a new car?
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    How long do you keep your cars for, how many miles do you typically drive per year, and how good care do you take of the vehicles, and how convenient is this dealership to you to get basic maintenance done?

    I do all basic maintenance myself, and therefore this would be a very bad pre-payment deal from my perspective.

    If you drive on average 12K miles per year, and you keep your vehicle typically 3 years, and you do an oil change at 5K miles with tire rotations at 10K, and you pay $30 for an oil change and $25 for a tire rotation.......then in 3 years you would have spent on your own $285.

    Whats the value of a car wash at service intervals? To me, nothing.

    Whats the value of a loaner for maintenance services? To me, nothing. All of the above maintenance services should take less than 30-60 minutes. I'd be waiting for the vehicle, not driving off and coming back later in the day.

    What parts do you anticipate using in 36K miles, that are not covered by warranty, where you would get 5% discount? Tires?....nope, you'd buy them somewhere else where they are more reasonably priced. Brake pads, maybe. Battery after 4 or 5 years?....nope, you'd have that done somewhere else where it's more reasonably priced.

    Plus, there is risk in a pre-payment up front that would make that prepayment worthless. The car could be in an accident and totaled, you could sell the vehicle and replace it with something else, the dealership could go out of business, etc, etc.

    Is the dealership is extremely close to you and convenient, as compared all of the other maintenance shop? For me, there are probably 50+ general maintenance shops closer than the local dealership. It's no where near as convenient.

    Only you can make an evaluation whether it's a good deal or not for your personal situation. I suspect most would conclude it isn't.
  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    Thanks kiawah-- you raise some good points. The one good thing about the membership is that it can be used at any of their locations/dealership (Ford, Honda, Acura, etc.) and at least 2 of those are close to me. However, this is a small thing compared to all of the other things you are saying.

    I really think the dealer is trying to arm wrestle me into buying either this membership or their extended car warranty just because they feel they are giving me a great deal on my trade-in, but in reality, they are giving me $475 below the "fair" blue book value. They originally quoted me $1975 below blue book and I got them to come up $1500, but it's still off by the $475. And what's with the "fair" anyway. On Kelly's site, my car would be considered "good" condition. The dealer claimed that they always pay at the most "fair" value because there is always some reconditioning to be done to bring it up to good condition. Does this sound right? They claim there isn't much they can do with my car besides giving it to a wholesaler. The car is an 05 Honda Pilot EX with a little over 76K miles. The other thing that doesn't sound right to me is that they are being hard about the accessory package, which includes mudguards, wheel locks and trim. They are trying to say that all of this stuff already comes on the car, so it's not really optional except for the trim which can be removed. I really think they are trying to get over by getting me to pay for the accessory package, the vip membership, or the extended warranty jus because they came up $1500 on my trade-in. Advice anyone.....
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    VIP club membership from Sheehy. This membership costs $745 and includes lifetime oil changes, lifetime tire inspection and rotation, 50% off annual detailing, seasonal inspections, lifetime car washes w/ service, 5% off parts/accessories/service, service loaners for all maintenance services.

    Lifetime oil changes, - You can get them anywhere for about 20 bucks. Calculate it over the period you expect to own the car.

    Lifetime tire inspection and rotation - Check with a tire dealer for that brand of tire. May be free anyway.

    50% off annual detailing - Something you can do yourself. Most new paints retain their luster if you keep them clean. Now, if it included free car washes......

    Seasonal inspections - A great way to sell you services.

    Lifetime car washes w/ service - A great way to get you in for service. You have to buy something to get it.

    5% off parts/accessories/service - Whoopee ding.

    Service loaners for all maintenance services - Don't some dealers do this for free?

    OK, so maybe I'm a skeptic, but I would rather put the money in a savings account in case I did need it. If I didn't, well, it was earning interest, and it's still mine.
  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    Woooowww, I kinda feel like a fool now after reading the responses from kaiwah and 55396. I really appreciate the advice. Glad I haven't closed on the deal yet. I already have a buyers order ready, but I'm gonna go back to the dealer to renegotiate before I go to my credit union. This ain't over..... by the way 55396, what do you think about the other things I was saying such as the amount they are giving me for my trade, the "fair" vs. "good" condition debate, and the dealer trying to squeeze more money from me because of the trade (see my post).
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    Sometimes, loosening and retightenong in a criss cross patter. will correct pulsing ir it was caused by this. My Galant had pulsing when I got it back from the shop after rotation one time. I did this, and problem gone.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    "some cars are under-engineered, but "prone" to warpage"

    I wondered why a rotor would warp. Sure, they get hot on hard braking. So what? They shouldn't warp, but they do. Why? My thought was that if one braked hard enough to get them hot, then came to a stop at a traffic light, there may be a reason why warpage could happen. You stop, and your brakes are applied to hold the car in place until the light changes. OK, so what? Well, the pads are clamped onto the rotor on one spot. The rest of the rotor is now being cooled by the prevailing breezes. But, the area under the pads cannot cool with the rest of the rotor. My thought is that this may cause warpage due to uneven cooling. I now try to stop 10 feer or so from the light, then allow the car to creep forward, exposing all of the rotor for more even cool down, rather than trapping the heat in one spot.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    "by the way 55396, what do you think about the other things I was saying such as the amount they are giving me for my trade, the "fair" vs. "good"

    A dealer and his finance man have a bag of tricks that Santa Claus couldn't carry. They are experts at countering any arguments that you may have and can push and shove a customer in so many directions that they become so confused, they just sign the paper while feeling they are getting screwed. The best way to counter this is to do your homework, decide what it's worth to you. Then, you simply go in, present it to them and say "the only thing I require from you is a yes or no." If no, then walk, and see if they call you back. Request the same because if they get you talking, they will win. You can always come back.They have no way of knowing if they will ever see you again. BIG lever in your hand. If you engage, you are a novice going against people that do this every day for a living. The more they can squeeze out of you, the better the living is. Nice guy? Really wants to help me? Sure - to get your to sign at the best deal for the dealership. That's their job.

    So, how do you come up with your numbers? Well' you're right here. Use Edmunds for a start. Also, try KBB, NADA etc. Call your bank. Use Consumers Reports to check reliability. Ask your local salvage yard what parts seem to be a problem. They get requests every day and know what the problem areas are for a given brand/model. Do an advanced search on Ebay and check Completed Listings only. Look for Sold items. This will show you what people are willing to pay for your vehicle. Look on Auto Trader to see the asking price range of your vehicle. Internet prices seem to be pretty close to the bone. Remember that prices at a car lot are probably inflated by 2-3 grand to allow them to deal so they can pretend that they are giving you more on your trade than it's worth. How many times have you heard 'Well, they were giving way more than my car was worth. I would be a fool not to trade.' Probably a fool if they did.

    Then, decide if it would be advantageous to sell your own car as opposed to the higher sales tax you would pay without a trade. But if you do, clean it up and detail it first. It may even be worthwhile to pay to have it done. If $100 spent gets you $500 - $1000 more, it'e a pretty good return on that investment. That's what a dealer does before it hits the lot, and look at how much they jack the price. Who knows, it may look so nice that you will decide to keep it a year or so longer. Then take that extra money that you would be putting into higher car payments, interest on a loan, insurance, licenses, fees etc. into a savings account every month, and when you are ready to trade, you will have a much smaller loan and far less money thrown away in interests, not to mention that big new depreciation hit. It does take a bit of discipline though. Best way is payroll deduction into a savings account titlrd CAR. Then don't mess with it. By time you get done figuring what trading is really going to cost you, the old ride may look much better. ;-) BTW, we have noticed that the used car lots are pretty sparse. In tight times, more people may be looking for used cars as opposed to taking a big hit and going out on a limb for new when their job could go away. This could mean a premium for yours after it's detailed. Lotsa food for thought.

    Some dealers may allow you to pass your car through them as a trade, then sign it over to your buyer. That would take care of that problem. Oh ya, decline on all the 'extras'. It's a profit enhancer for the dealer.

    The last car we bought was a pearl white 03 Toyota Avalon for my wife. Bought it from Enterprise at less than a year old. Base model, but still nicely equipped. I explained what I did to it in the Avalon forum, but basically bought everything online to make it appear like the top of the line for less than the dealer wanted for the spoiler alone. Then my wife put chrome wheels on it, and it became Cinderella.
    There are lots of ways to turn the crank. You're here, and that's a good start. Search on 55396 for details.
  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    Good stuff....thanks for your time and advice!
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    I would think a 2005 Honda Pilot in 'good' condition, with somewhat higher milage that 'average', but still reasonable milage, would be a car that most dealers would want to keep on their lot. It's a Honda. It's a small vehicle, with, I think, pretty good milage capabilities. If you don't have paint damage or panel damage or interior stains, etc, I would guess your car would just need the usual cleanup. Their statement about not wanting your car on their lot is probably BS, especially if the dealership has Honda and Accura lots.

    Remember, the money in car dealerships is in the used car market. And, they usually want to make about $3,000 on their used car sales.

    But, accessory packages in most cases don't add much if anything to the value of a used car. Are these thing that were added to the car at the dealership, or are they a factory option package. If not factory, they will not appear in the Blue Book, etc list of accessorys, and therefore 'have no value'. I don't know what 'trim' includes, but mudguards and wheel locks really aren't worth anything when considering the overall value of a used car.

    The VIP package - this looks like a lot of 'inspections' and so forth, very limited percentage off values, and other minor services. I would bet you would have to run the car to the 'change oil' indicator came on, which in modern cars probably will be close to 7,500 miles or so - this mean you would be getting only a few changes. Overall, don't even think about this package.

    They are selling you stuff, stuff with high markups - extended warranty, VIP package, etc. You never said what you are buying. But if it is a Honda, you probably will never use much of an extended warranty.

    Also - if your city has a Carmax, take your Pilot there and they will make you an outright purchase offer. This will help with knowing what your car is worth. And, it might be best to sell them your old car and do a straight deal without a trade - you then know exactly what you are putting into a new car.

    You also said your car is in average condition. Throw out the fast food containers, vacuum the inside and wipe stains off the windows, trim, etc, get it washed. Just doing this before you show the car will make some difference in how it is appraised.
  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    I'm glad you mentioned how much profit dealerships like to see from a used car sales because I didn't know that. That piece of info is really helpful.

    The accessory package that I was talking about is for the purchase of the new car, not for the value of the trade-in. They are trying to sell this with the purchase of the new car. The trim is just the decorative pinstripes on the sides of the vehicle.

    The car that I am looking to purchase is a Honda and now that it's been said, I completely agree about the extended warranty probably not getting much usage.

    The Carmax idea is good too. Thanks for the advice!
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,319
    The trim on the side of the vehicle can be purchased from the same kinds of people who put on the trim for the dealers. A local dealer parts counter told me who put on their striping by coming to the lot occasionally. The person had me stop by their shop they shared with a spoiler manufacturer and she put on the stripes in my choice of colors for cheap when I bought my last car in 02. Cheap. I paid cash.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • tina1976tina1976 Posts: 18
    So that proves everybody's point that the accessory package is BS and isn't worth the $600 they try to get you for.......
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,319
    I think I paid $30 or $35 for the stripes. Plus a few months later I bought a roll of the striping from her for $10 or less because I wanted to change the shape slightly. I met her at the local dealership when she was showing up there to stripe several of their cars.

    Same for paint touchup folk. Same for paintless dent removal people.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,025
    A reporter is looking to talk with a driver who brought a vehicle in for service and the shop tried to upsell them. Maybe you came in for a scheduled maintenance visit and the service advisor tried to sell you a new set of brakes or a transmission flush.
    If you have a story to share, please respond to jfallon@edmunds.com by Friday, May 15, 2009 with a few details and your city and state of residence.
    Thanks,
    Jeannine Fallon
    Corporate Communications
    Edmunds.com

    MODERATOR

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

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    A reporter is looking to speak to owners that have had trouble getting their car repaired because of parts issues. If this has happened to you, please contact ctalati@edmunds.com by Thursday, May 14, 2009.

    Edmunds Manager UGC Click on my screen name to send a personal message. Need help navigating? Check out Getting Started in Edmunds Forums.
    Need help picking out a make/model, finding inventory, or advice on pricing? Talk to an Edmunds Car Shopping Advisor

  • euphoniumeuphonium Great Northwest, West of the Cascades.Posts: 3,425
    The innocent twenty something lady brought the car into the service bay with a minor complaint about something and while there a new service manager sold her on a big bill of maintenance proceedures and she said "Yes".

    When she was presented the big bill, she advised them she didn't own the car, and was renting it from their rental department, but appreciated their fixing her minor complaint. :blush:
  • lhylhy Posts: 48
    I am thinking about buying a used 2004 KIA Optima LX (2.7L V-6 engine) with 56K.

    Since it is approaching the 60K maintenance, I was wondering how much this will cost me?

    In particular, do I need to replace the timing belt AND water pump, or can I just replace the timing belt? How much will these things costs?

    And are maintenance and repair costs expensive for the 2004 Optima LX? Can most mechanics/shops work on the KIA Optima?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    If you click on "Tips and Advice" near the top of the page and then click on "maintenance costs" this should allow you to determine what is required and the approximate cost.
  • thegipperthegipper Posts: 4
    I just got my 80K maintenance done on my 2003 2L Jetta in Dallas, TX and was told it was about time to get the brakes flushed and the timing belt replaced.

    My questions are:
    Is $110 an exorbitant price for a VW brake flush?

    How does one know when to replace a timing belt?

    Is $905 a lot to pay to replace:
    timing belt
    timing belt tensioner (arm?)
    water pump
    (I was told that if you are replacing the timing belt, you might as well replace all three b/c they are right there, and easy to get to once the TB is off).

    I'm new to this board, so if I need to repost elsewhere, please just let me know.

    Thank you in advance!
    David
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Read the Maintenance section of your owner's manual. It should give direction as to when the timing belt should be changed.

    My wild guess is you will find out it's 100,000 miles and the dealer just wants to up the timing to move some money from you to him sooner.

    I think I got my Honda Ridgeline brakes flushed for about $50 plus a little for fluid. And, I asked if they truly flushed the system and did not just pull fluid from the master cylinder and re-fill.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    Yes, those other parts are things you may as well replace, while they are in there.

    It appears that Gates recomends 60K mi for that engine, if I am reading their timing belt replacement guide correctly:

    http://www.gates.com/brochure.cfm?brochure=2256&location_id=3487

    The schedule at vw.com says "check" every 40,000 miles:
    http://www.vw.com/myvw/yourcar/maintenance/findschedules/en/us/

    My understanding is it is very difficult to really do much checking without doing most of the labor involved in replacing it. I would not take chances, it is an interference engine if the belt breaks you are probably looking at major engine repairs or replacement. Prices vary a lot, if there is an independent VW specialist in your area you might contact them for their price. (googling "VW repair specialist texas" seems to indicate you would have some options)
  • thegipperthegipper Posts: 4
    Thanks so much for the help!

    I have an independent specialist I've used before. They quoted me about 50 bucks less than the dealership, so I guess that's something. It sounds like the smart thing to go ahead and get it changed. Especially when I picked up my car from the dealer, and had a headlamp out. When it rains it pours :)

    Thanks also for the link to Gates. That Timing Belt Replacement Guide PDF is a great resource!
  • ronsmith38ronsmith38 Posts: 228
    This may save on maintenance costs, but up the costs for allergy medicine.
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