Calling all mechanics--Car Repair Cost Question

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Tony Int, Jul 15, 2006.

  1. Tony Int

    Tony Int Agent

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    I have a 99 Dodge Intrepid that I got from my sister about 6 months ago, it has around 60,000 miles on it. The AC was not working so I took it in. I have been told that the ac unit is fine, it is the flaps that control the air flow into the car that are not working. I guess they move to let in the heat or AC or mix the air depending on how you have it set. Any way I have been told that it will require the removal of the dashboard and that is labor intensive and the estimate on JUST labor is around $500. I know nothing about cars, however people I have told including a brother in law who can assemble and disassemble a car in the dark (he lives in another state otherwise he would do the repair) said no way. I guess I am just going to a wider audience to see if anyone has had this issue with their car and what it cost to repair.

    Thanks--T.
     
  2. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Anytime they have to remove the dash you're looking at around $400+ in labor. You can shop around to various dealerships/shops, but I doubt you'll find too much better.

    On a slightly more important note, do some research on your car . . . I've got a '00 Intrepid. A little research will show you that these models have a tendency (that may be an understatement) to die - completely - from sludge build-up. I would suggest starting to run a full synthetic oil IMMEDIATELY.

    Go to google and type in "dodge intrepid horror stories" or "dodge intrepid sludge" and you'll quickly see what I'm talking about. I started running mine on synthetic at around 50k and it seems to be doing ok at 93k right now. FYI, I've had lots of issues with the AC as well.

    Come to think of it, while they're in there have them replace your water pump . . . that's the problem I had with my AC. I had to pay all that to have the dash pulled and the actual part was well under $50, so it'd probably be worth doing now if you're pulling the dash anyway.
     
  3. Tony Int

    Tony Int Agent

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    Thanks Seth.

    I did do research after I got the car and saw the horror stories. Fortunately my sister gave it to me so I had no upfront costs. It was her husbands (he passed away) and she had several other cars and was getting rid of it, so I took it. Living in NYC I drive it very infrequently, perhaps on Sat for short shopping trips to NJ.

    Her husband did take care it, regularly changing oil, other fluids, etc. I will take you up on the suggestion and have them put synthetic oil in.

    I have not had a car in 20 years and know nothing about cars, so any other suggestions are welcome!
     
  4. Kevin T

    Kevin T Screenwriter

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    i had an 89 plymouth sundance that had an ac problem which required the dash to be removed. the labor was also about $500-$600 so the price you were quoted is not out of line. it doesn't sound like your mechanic is trying to screw you. you just need to decide if it's worth the money to you to have it repaired.
     
  5. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    An FYI on the synthetic suggestion: what I do is find a place that will allow me to supply my own oil and filter and they'll just do the work. I can usually find a place that will do this for aabout $5-$10. Then I go to Wal-Mart or AutoZone and get the Mobil synthetic for about $20. Most shops will charge you around $50 or $60 for a synthetic oil change, so you can save money buy purchasing the oil yourself.
     
  6. Bob Graz

    Bob Graz Supporting Actor

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    The blend door broke in my Windstar. I had an extended warranty fortunately. Dealer said normal cost was $400+.
     
  7. Tony Int

    Tony Int Agent

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    Thanks for all the info., I guess I am not being taken for a ride (pun intended). I have decided to have the work done.
     
  8. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    Having pulled the dashes out of numerous Toyotas over the years (I work in a Toyota dealership service dept) I can assure you that your estimate is not out of line. The quickest to R&R are the pre-95 Tacomas--about 3 hrs. Typical Camry is 4-5. Most common reason to R&R would be bubbling in the padded dashes (many are now hard plastic) caused by delamination of the skin from the foam caused by application of armor-all. Padded dash skins are porous to allow them to breathe, which prevents cracking. Armor All soaks thru the pores and destroys the adhesive. Try putting a post-it on anything that's been armor-alled.

    The Dodge Neon was a pos, but the dashpad can be pulled in about 45 minutes. Problem is that you have to pull the dashpad to do just about anything dash related.
     
  9. Andrew Bunk

    Andrew Bunk Screenwriter

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    Better get a new Johnson rod in there while you're at it.
     
  10. Dennis*G

    Dennis*G Supporting Actor

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    actually pulling the dash on an intrepid isnt that bad (I used to own a 2000) go over to www.dodgeintrepid.net and do some searches you will find all the info you need.
     

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