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Acura TL Maintenance and Repair



  • bartalk3bartalk3 Posts: 692

    $600 for a 45,000 mile service is very high. If you can't get an independent mechanic who works on Acuras, take it over to your friendly Honda dealer and get their price for the same service. Since the TL and the Honda Accord are so similar under the hood, Honda mechanics can do the work at probably half the cost. For example, for a 30,000 service, my Acura dealer wanted $300. Honda did the same service for about $175.

    P.S. When you get your car serviced, just have them do what's listed in the owner's manual for that mileage. The dealer tacks on their "recommended" additions, which is unnecessary and just helps your dealer make his boat payment.
  • Not sure I know the answer, but I can tell you that after I hit a nasty pothole a few years back w/my '05 TL the local tire shop bought me a "reconditioned" wheel. I was nervous at first, but it was $200 instead of $400 (for new), so I did it. Looks and performs great.
  • I too would like to upgrade my brakes to Brembo as I've heard good things about them. I feel the standard '05 TL brakes are insufficient. How difficult is it to replace brakes on this car? And what special tools are needed? Also, is there a manual somewhere that walks a "slightly mechanical" guy through this sort of task? Or do you guys that do this just have grease in your veins?!
  • rvator4rvator4 Posts: 84
    First of all, replacing the rotors would probably NOT change the stopping distance of your car under normal circumstances. Brake pads may shorten the distance. If you have never done a brake job, I would recommend finding an experienced friend to help you this time. It is not a difficult job and only takes minutes a wheel, but please get help this first time. I suspect that there are auto books in the library that will walk you through it, but I still recommend an experienced helper this first time.
    Brake pads require no special tools other than a good set of metric sockets and a set of small metric hex wrenches. Rotors will also require a hammer and a small center punch. Buy the 8 metric flat head screws that hold the rotors at a honda dealer because your old ones will probably not come out undamaged. Use the center punch and hammer to remove the screws. Then use the hammer to loosen the rotors. Clean off the spindle well. If you can get a dial indicator to check run-out, fine, but mine were within 0.001 inch as installed.
    Again, get someone with experience to help you this first time. I am 72 and have built cars since I was 16, so I do all my own work. Oh, all but oil changes now.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    For me, personally, since I don't have the mechanical experience or wherewithal that you do, I wouldn't want to put my life (as well as those of my family) in my hands! :sick:
  • I am about to buy a 2006TL. Does anyone have experience with extended warranties? Is Acura care good? What about
    Comments and suggestions please.
  • bodble2,

    Is this call also for 2008 TL? My 2008 TL's wiper does not work properly at the lowest speed (a few times).

    Also I recently noticed engine abnormal noise (not pinging) when I accelarate the car.

    Another problem is the mileage display. A few times (one for last week) the MPG drops a few readings (e.g. 28 to 23) when I start the car. For instance, I have MPG reading for 29 with 105 miles last Sat. On Sun. morning after I started the car, it drops to 25. I drove 3 miles and restarted the car it drops to 22. Is there any computer programming problem which controls also the engine performance - casue louder engine noise or pinging??
  • go_mdx1go_mdx1 Posts: 135
    Any one out there with a 2004 TL shop manual who can tell me the fuse location for the bluetooth unit??

  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I'm not sure if the recall applies also to the '08's. I actually wasn't even aware of it until I took my car in for regular oil change and the service rep told me about it.

    I'm also not aware of any known computer programming problem that causes unusual engine noise or pinging. Have you recently changed the grade or brand of gasoline?
  • The first time I went to the Acura dealer after buying the car (June of 2007) I had the oil changed based on the service indicator (about 14,000 miles). When I went to pick up the car I noted the dealer had charged me $10.50 for an oil additive (the oil only cost $8 in total!) and they also had a charge for a gasoline additive at $24.50. I suspect they did neither but in any event I protested and they told me they would give me a credit at the next servicing. There is an express statement in the owners manual on oil service hat additives are not necessary so long as you use 5W-20 detergent API certified oil.

    I am about to bring it in for the second oil change based on the service indicator (24,000 miles) and want to know if anyone else has seen such ridiculous charges added on to an oil change/service.

  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 3,096
    I've not had such charges. But, this is one of the reasons I don't use the dealer for anything other than warranty work... Not to mention how much more expensive dealerships tend to be vs. independent shops...

    When bringing the car in for service, specify what you want done and no more...

    '13 Jaguar XF, possibly my favorite of all the cars I've owned. But, my '09 Jag XK was a beauty, as was my '05 Acura TL, '88 Acura Integra, '84 Mitsubishi Mirage Turbo & '78 VW Scirocco (my first!). And, of course, the '92 Nissan Sentra SE-R and '95 Saab 900s I bought for the ex... Ok, I like a lot of the cars in my life.

  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I think your dealer is just padding their profit margin by selling you stuff you don't need.
  • When you take it in, ask for the cost of the oil change. If it's $24.95, or whatever, pay that when you pick it up. Nothing more. Trying to get you to pay for an "additive" you neither requested nor wanted is beyond unscrupulous. It's extortion--or fraud--or something. Don't pay it.
  • gbosilgbosil Posts: 88
    I have a 2007 TLS and when I start it up for the first time "cold engine" the car idols very rough like it's going to konk out. After the car warms up it's fine. I have owned numerous cars in my lifetime and not one did this? All will idol high and then kick down to about 800-900 RPM. Anybody experience this?
  • I have a 04 TL that does the same thing at cold start up. It seems to stumble a bit but it doesnt get close to stalling, but its very noticable on cold start ups. Does anyone know what this may be?
  • You are probably too young to remember carburetors and their problems with cold starts and fast idle. Modern day auto computers have eliminated the fast idle completely, providing the correct mixture for any condition. If you are having a rough condition, you must have a faulty sensor or dirt in the system somewhere. I would try a different gas (high test for a few weeks and if that doesn't help, a cleaner of some kind (although try at your own risk). Some types of gasoline used to advertise gas that included a cleaner. Other than that, it will require a shop with an analysis system.
  • gbosilgbosil Posts: 88
    **BEWARE** Just got a call from the dealer after completing my inspection. 31,xxx miles on the car. Mind you I drive mostly highway. I know I needed front pads "BREMBO" but he then proceeded to tell me that I also needed to replace the front rotors too! He said they couldn't be cut and they were beyond the maximum allowed. $ 645.00 is what he quoted just for a front brake job! I responded with ARE YOU NUTS! At first he didn't agree with me. I have owed numerous cars and never had to replace the rotors just cut them. I asked him "do you think I am stupid?" The Service Manager agreed and they are going to replace the front rotors "free of charge." Watch out Acura's sales are down so they are trying to make it up in service department. Anybody else get this BS from the dealership lately? :mad:
  • Same thing happen to me the other day. After coming back from work, went inside the house and came out few minutes later, my car wouldn't start. I called roadside assistance, they came quickly. The guy told me that this was his 2nd time that day for this same problem. He jumped start my car but warned me that I may need my car jumped again next morning. It didn't last for next morning. Almost as soon as he left, the car wouldn't start again. I called dealer the next morning, they told me to bring the car in. Called AAA to jump the car and drove to dealer. They replaced the battery under warranty. The car has 35,000 miles on it. My co-worker told me that he had the same problem with his TXS last year.
  • This has been a well documented problem with TL's. I have an '04 and my battery went dead in about 18 months. Unfortunately I was not near a dealer, so I put a WalMart battery in it for $65 and no problems since.
  • rvator4, Please elaborate on the center punch method of removing those 2 screws in each rotor. I've tried the impact driver with no success. I'm just about to get out the DRILL! (2002 TL-S)
  • You might have to hit it once straight into the screw near the outer edge to make an indentation. Then tilt the center punch forward and tap it in the direction the screw turns. Once I did that, they moved easily. I also tried an impact driver to no avail. The Honda parts guy told me they never come out unless you use some persuasion.
    Let me know how it goes.
  • Center punch worked like a charm. Thanks for the tip! I really don't see why they are necessary. Once the wheel is on, the rotor isn't going anywhere, but I'll get new ones just the same.
  • I have an 05 TL ~40kmi that is on it's third battery. They have been replaced under waranty but this seems strange that the batteries would only last a yr or so. The dealer hasn't found anything wrong. Anyone else had this issue?
  • Hi fellow TL enthusiasts,

    I had posted before re: scratches on my window tint and I took my TL back to the window tinter who said he'd never seen this before. Like many of you had told me the windows need moleskin to protect from debris getting caught between the felt strip and glass. I received a quote of $216 for the installation of the moleskin on all 4 windows. The materials only cost $60 so I'm paying for the labor. (I paid $215 for the original tint so this is really adding up.)

    My question to you all is: Do the doors need to be taken apart for the moleskin to be applied? The tinter said that's what is involved which makes me very hesitant. That sounds like a big ordeal to me...

    Any feedback would be great because I am unsure how to proceed.

    Thanks for advice! (BTW, does Acura know what a bad design the TL's windows are? My Acura Integra of 13 years with tinted windows never had this problem!) :cry:
  • Isn't there some sort of warranty on the tint job??!
  • I have an '08 TL that the Acura dealership tinted the windows. All 4 windows scratched the window tint. The sales and service staff all know about this problem as well as Acura but do not tell potential buyers of this problem as it may compromise a sale. When I complained to Acura, their response was the TL was not designed for after market window tint, Acura was not changing the design of the window wiper strip or adding felt to prevent the scratches and therefore Acura had no further involvement with my complaint. Acura pointed out that other manufacturers such as Mercedes have the same or worse problem with their windows when tinted. Regardless, this is a very poor excuse from Acura. The '09 TSX does have felt on the window wipers and should not have this problem. Have not seen an '09 TL but Acura told me in May there was no design change in the '09 TL window wipers so if that is the situation, the '09 will have the same problem scratching the window tint.

    The dealership did replace the window tint on all 4 windows which since has scratched again. I have an '88 Acura Legend with window tint that has never scratched.

    The window wipers must be removed from the door in order to properly clean the window wiper strip to get the adhesive to stick to the rubber and the door panel has be be removed (be careful not to strip the lower bumper mounting screw if you remove the door panels). Eventually the moleskin may peel off and if it does, will stick to the window tint and completly ruin the window tint as well as cause excess strain on the window motor which can cause it to prematurely fail. My Acura dealer as well as several other window tint shops around town have tried moleskin with these results.

    Hope my experience helps you decide.
  • mikey38mikey38 Posts: 141
    I had the felt installed when I got the windows on my 06 TL tinted. I watched the guys working and removing the door panels to get to the rub strip was no big deal. No scratches to date.
  • I'm a sophomore at Suny Albany and I live on Long Island and one night I drove through a puddle thinking I would make it through and I totally underestimated its size. I almost made it through before my car stalled. I have a cold air intake that has its filter down at the bottom of the engine and I dont know why my engine isn't starting. Supposively the cars computer shut off the car went into smart mode and isn't letting anything else further the damage. It tries to start but doesnt switch over. It might be my fuses or spark plugs but I am completely clueless to what could be the problem. Is it possible water got sucked into the engine? Does anyone have any advice for this situation. I have to get it towed to a mechanic or an Acura Dealer before next week because I have an appointment back home for a free transmission due to the recall before 112,000 miles which I really want to recieve. I also feel that I woud be taken advantage of and charged way more than what its worth if I dont know what's wrong with it. If anyone could get back to me as soon as possible it would be highly appreciated.
  • Thanks for everyone's replies to my concerns. So trailhiker, did you get the moleskin installed or not? Your explanation makes sense but it also makes me hesitant.

    My window tint guy said if I don't get the moleskin installed, the warranty on the tint will be voided. It looks like I don't have a choice but to get the moleskin installed.

    Any comments are appreciated. This is so frustrating and such a design defect!
  • After 3 months "bickering" with American Honda (Acura) and the Acura dealership, the Acura dealership refunded the total cost of what I paid them to tint the windows and also let me decide if I wanted them to remove the window tint or leave it on so I left the window tint on. Even though American Honda would not do anything, the dealership did make an earnest effort to provide some level of satisfaction. I feel the same way, the TL is a great looking car and not to be able to tint the windows is crazy and definately detracts from the style of the car.

    After researching every window tint dealer in the Dallas area, I took my '08 TL to Altamere Window Tint ( for them to look at it. They have stores nationwide. The store manager said he was aware of the window tint scratch problem with Honda and Acura and told me to leave the original tint on until it scratched enough it bothered me and to bring it to them and they would remove the old window tint, (the rear window would not have to be retinted) and install new tint and moleskin if needed. He said if they felt they did not need to install the moleskin and the windows scratched, he would replace the window tint at not cost and install the moleskin. He really wanted to install the moleskin as a last resort. He felt like the rubber window wipers would either would smooth out of if there were severe enough rough spots on the wipers then he would install the moleskin.

    What I have been doing to minimize the window tint scratching is using a lint free cloth that you would use to clean a pair of eye glasses and running the cloth between the top window wiper and the window tint to remove any dirt build up. Since doing this, I have not noticed the existing scratches getting worse or new scratches appearing.

    I probably will eventually have Altamere retint the windows if the scratches get worse and it becomes an eyesore.

    Hope this helps.
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