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Sky High auto repairs

Discussion in 'Around the Grinder' started by David Stifle, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    My wife's 2007 Volvo has developed a slow antifreeze leak. The dealer quoted her a price on the repair--$2,000! Is it possible this is even close to reality? The dealer has always been honest in the past, but I just can't see how that could be possible. I could put in a new system for less than that. Do you guys think this price could be right?
     
  2. nozyk

    nozyk

    888
    Jun 17, 2010
    Yes.

    We have a friend who has been a Volvo driver for over 40 years and as faithful as she is to the cars she has told us some stories about certain repairs which were

    exorbitant.Maybe hit up another dealership for a "second opinion" or a private repair shop?
     
  3. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    Oh, I'm going to get another estimate for sure.
     
  4. R.Rock

    R.Rock Fulltime KnifeMaker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    647
    Jan 24, 2010
    Slow antifreeze leak where?
    Upper Plenum?, lower Plenum?, Radiator side Tank? Head?, expansion plug?, block heater?, Heater Core? Overflow tank?
    each of these or a combination of these and the diagnostic time as well as the actual problem add to the cost.
    As a auto tech for 15yrs I can assure you that were not fixing '74' chevy 350's anymore. As most things, the answer is in the details.
    Not trying to justify anything for anybody... just curious as to WHAT is leaking.

    I had a estimate done for some simple kitchen cabinets, 10,000...it isn't just auto repair.
     
  5. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    The estimate I have says there is a very small leak in the radiator, estimated cost to replace is $1200.00 (Doesn't auto zone or any of the auto parts stores sell a product that is supposed to plug radiator leaks, and does it work?) There is also a problem with the SAS/clock spring (whatever that is), cost to repace $670.00

    I certainly understand what you are saying about the kitchen cabinets, prices are just going insane in just about every facet of life; whether it's food, gas, services, or hardware.
     
  6. Bufford

    Bufford Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 13, 2006
    If its only a slow engine coolant leak try using Bars Leaks it works well for most issues. Then there is the stuff with the copper metal filings in a bottle and there has been good results, but I havn't tried it myself. Try those simple solutions before having a mechanic tear things appart leaving you with a huge bill.
     
  7. R.Rock

    R.Rock Fulltime KnifeMaker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    647
    Jan 24, 2010
    Small Radiator leak,
    Well In my experience there's no mechanic in that little bottle of additive, It may work or it may not, a used car lot trick at best, a repair shop doesn't usually want to do business that way cause if you get 100 miles down the road and it didn't work and takes out the engine guess who is gonna get hollered at :livid:...That's right the repair shop,(been there done that) "But you said it would work and now your telling me I have to spend $4000.00 on a used engine!!!" Can't win for loosing and all you were trying to do was help a person out by putting a $10.00 additive in.
    So to avoid this the shop just wants to do it right without a comeback. Put in a new one with a warranty burp the system of air and have a nice day, the tech can relax cause he knows its done right.

    A possible solution could be, ( I say possible cause some shops won't do it cause again they can't predict the outcome)
    If you have a reputable radiator repair shop (not as many around as there used to be) you could ask if they can pull the radiator and you took it to the radiator shop for repair, is that something they would be willing to do?

    Maybe it's a SRS (not SAS) Clockspring???
    This controls your drivers side airbag a clockspring allows you to turn the steering wheel while making electrical contact, cant use wires cause...well that's kinda obvious.

    If this is inop, you will not have a airbag.

    Not sure if this will make you feel any better but was in a shop last Thursday that has to put a radiator in a motorized skylift that's French made...Radiator is $4000.00 and they can't get one for a month, now that's a good ole kick in the nu@#s!
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2012
  8. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
     
  9. Dan Seaver

    Dan Seaver

    898
    Jun 25, 2007
    $1200 for a radiator swap is far too high. Dealerships will typically sell parts at 2-3x the price of aftermarket parts and being an 07 parts should be available with a 4-5 day wait from your local parts supplier. Without pricing the part and looking at the vehicle I couldn't quote a price but I know it would be far lower than $1200.

    As for the SRS clockspring, your options would be used parts or new from the dealer. Its not a common repair item so the chances of an aftermarket replacement are non existent.

    Bars leak is pretty good but we only use it on tiny leaks or vehicles that aren't worth the new radiator.
     
  10. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    Thanks Dan, that's good to know info. I appreciate it. My wife seems to have met a mechanic at the dealership who indicated he could do it in his spare time (read, at his house) for far less, but I've been a little leery of that idea.
     
  11. foxx

    foxx

    Sep 5, 2010
    I've helped restore a few old cars, and a radiator shop was the only solution, in some cases. If you can remove the radiator, they can boil it out, maybe fix the leak, it just depends on where the leak is. My Uncle had a Volvo, he always talked about how expensive the parts are.
    Is it a foriegn exchange rate involved? IDK
    Years ago I had a 77 Cady with a leak next to the radiator cap. I cleaned the area, used JB weld, and it lasted for years.(read, car wasn't worth a new radiator). So, again it just depends.

    I'm finding it more difficult to want an import for a car. Hell, the more expensive they are up front, and the more complex, means they will be more expensive to repair later on. My Cady had more expensive parts, compared to cheaper cars from the same era.
     
  12. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    Foxx, I drive a 99 Dodge Ram, it's got 140K on it now and never had a lick of mrchanical trouble. Just some rust on the doorjams. So, I agree with you on imports.
     
  13. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    I did a little checking on the net. New OE Replacement radiators for the Volvo are going from $160-220. The Dealer has quite a markup, doesn't he?
     
  14. foxx

    foxx

    Sep 5, 2010
    Depending on your fan, electric or mechanical, replacing a radiator is not that hard. Just depends on how "mechanical" you are. It just looks more complicated than it really is. Pulling your fan(electric assembly or base of the shaft) is required. You'll save so much money doing it yourself, if you can. Just get a new one, if you are keeping the car for a long time. Do a flush and fill, change the thermostat and gasket, check your hoses, if they are spongy change them too.
    You can save money and change it all at the same time, well , that's what I'd do.
     
  15. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    Nah, that's not something I'd feel comfortable doing, I'm good at making knives and swords, not so hot at autos. My old man could sure do something like this in his day, but I just never learned from him as I should have. However, I am going to talk to the mechanic who offered to do it on the side, now that I have an idea of the equipement costs.
     
  16. kreole

    kreole

    Jul 23, 2009
    What model is it?
     
  17. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    xc70, cross country wagon.
     
  18. sunshadow

    sunshadow

    Oct 2, 2006
    Cars are simple until you get into computer controlled wiring. My guess is that you are paying for the labor to remove half of the crap hanging off your motor. At $90-120 per hour shop rate even simple repairs get expensive quick. My stepdaughter's Ford taurus needed a 13 dollar timing cover gasket but the labor to change it was quoted at $1400, the car wasn't worth that much but none of us had the money to replace it so she got a lesson in car repair, it took her 14 hours with my tools and supervision in the driveway but her car doesn't leak now. Learn to fix your cars or else bend over. Seriously.

    -Page
     
  19. R.Rock

    R.Rock Fulltime KnifeMaker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    647
    Jan 24, 2010
    Did a quick check book time for radiator RandR for this vehicle is 5.1hrs, so could be done in a weekend.
    also just did a quick check for any recalls and there is a recall for vehicles (this is one of the models listed) with Garmin 760 portable GPS units, if you have this you might want to contact your Vovlo dealer.
     
  20. David Stifle

    David Stifle KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 20, 2008
    Page, interesting story and I understand what you are saying when you talk about the need to repair your vehicles yourself, unfortunately, I'd have to take a course at CTI before doing something like that, haha. Steve, thanks for the R&R time, that's helpful. I spoke to the mechanic we were referred to and will be taking the car in tomorrow as he wants to diagnose the trouble. He did say it's seems too early for those kinds of problems to occur. If you guys are interested, I'll let you know, otherwise, well, thanks to all for giving me some perspective and hints.
     

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