Taurus Firearm Forum banner

1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
797 Posts
You are right! The auto manufacturers do not want you to be able to work on your own cars. They make it so that you either have to buy special equipment or go through a ridiculous process to make formally simple repairs. For example, one of my headlamps went out so, I purchased a new lamp and set about to change it. I soon found that there was no easy access to the bulb. I had to remove the entire front facia in order to get to the back of the headlight. Once there, installation was simple but, why in the world couldn’t they make an access hole for lamp replacement. I have come to the conclusion that cars are engineered to create work for their service departments.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
35,518 Posts
Makes me long for the olden days when we had a shop that was engaged in rewinding starters, generators and alternators. Drop off your core and walk out with a rebuilt one, or if it was an odd ball or one not in stock, in a day or so you could get your original one back. I still remember the smell when I walked in the front to the counter. And yes, I also long for those days when I could slide under a vehicle and spring back up if I needed a different wrench. :(
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,086 Posts
I went from a 4WD Tacoma to a Chrysler convertible + realized my workin on the car days are OVER! I don't fit under there! And BTW, on that Chrysler convert the battery is in the LF wheel well. Yah gotta jack it up, pull the tire, to change the battery. Ask me how I know!
Speaking of batteries, every time I need one I go through sticker shock. Although a few years back I bought a 'reconditioned' one at a local 'U pull' salvage yard. ..... They warranted it for 6 months ....... it was still working fine after two years.

Still fortunate enough to do my oil changes, brake pads, minor repairs that are 'under the hood', but it ain't getting any easier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,276 Posts
$303.99 + core charge for my starter. Just replaced it. Did 4wheel brake job that cost $180.00 as I had a bad wheel cylinder. My truck needed two batteries that was $450.00. 5 tires cost $1250.
Change out ALL fluids $489.00. Full tank of diesel 25bucks! Here in Colorado the price of diesel has gone down while gas has stayed same. Diesel $1.859 gas $2.259

Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,157 Posts
I was doing that this time last year, but I wasn't smart enough to admit that I couldn't tackle something as simple as removing and replacing a starter. After all, I'd done it many times in the past - what could be different ? Three days is what's different. First off, the OEM starter had a completely different wiring harness connecter which required salvaging the old one and switching. Secondly, the two bolts that connect the starter to the block are different diameters(metric) and different lengths. The designers were able to locate the starter in the most impossible position possible, and able to hide one bolt completely out of view and so close to adjacent surfaces that a standard socket wouldn't fit the bolt. I invented a whole host of new words, and am of the opinion that the designers were terrorists. Next time, I'll gladly pay the labor.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,086 Posts
I invented a whole host of new words, and am of the opinion that the designers were terrorists.
I hear you. Those are the times you are glad that no one is recording you, and that there are no women or children around.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
17,571 Posts
My starter went on my truck, or was going. Starter = $107, and that's the low end. $85 labor to put it in. I wasn't going to crawl under there, I might not get up. I don't remember when the last time I bought one, but I do remember it was about $40. They are reliable things.
$40?....that would be 1989.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
35,518 Posts
I was doing that this time last year, but I wasn't smart enough to admit that I couldn't tackle something as simple as removing and replacing a starter. After all, I'd done it many times in the past - what could be different ? Three days is what's different. First off, the OEM starter had a completely different wiring harness connecter which required salvaging the old one and switching. Secondly, the two bolts that connect the starter to the block are different diameters(metric) and different lengths. The designers were able to locate the starter in the most impossible position possible, and able to hide one bolt completely out of view and so close to adjacent surfaces that a standard socket wouldn't fit the bolt. I invented a whole host of new words, and am of the opinion that the designers were terrorists. Next time, I'll gladly pay the labor.
I did a '74 Pontiac Grandville starter when I lived in a townhouse with no garage...in January in a Chicago suburb. It was probably 10 degrees and I was on a concrete pad. It was a bifurcated operation, wrench for twenty minutes, go back inside, back again to the ice block. Got it done. Ahh youth, when I had more time than money. Now I run short of both.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,086 Posts
I did a '74 Pontiac Grandville starter when I lived in a townhouse with no garage...in January in a Chicago suburb. It was probably 10 degrees and I was on a concrete pad. It was a bifurcated operation, wrench for twenty minutes, go back inside, back again to the ice block. Got it done. Ahh youth, when I had more time than money. Now I run short of both.
Thanks for the memory jog: 1978, mid lower Michigan, don't remember month, but snow on ground. 1969 Ford Fairlane, 352. Valves shot, had to pull heads to take in for valve job. Done in landlords unheated garage with door up. Can not even imagine taking that on with today's vehicles.

And yes, 'more time than money' was a way of life. Landlord harvested 2000 chickens twice a year. Remember helping clean out the humongous coup to help pay the rent.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,211 Posts
Try some of the other parts. A vacuum control solenoid flaked out on my Subie. It's simply a switching valve for the EGR system. $249 for it. Why? Only ONE Japanese manufacturer makes them(Denso), and they are used by 3 different manufacturers(mount brackets are the only difference). I snagged a bag full for $1 the last trip to the junkyard.

I helped my youngest replace the alternator in his 300Z last year. You have to drop the sub-frame just to get to it. It's on the bottom of the engine.
 
  • Like
Reactions: WoodyUSSLUCE

·
Registered
Joined
·
292 Posts
Last starter (mini high torque) I bought was for my 66 Pontiac, and IIRC was $250. That was around 2005 and was worth every penny. The stock starter removal required loosening and moving the exhaust header to make enough room so the starter could slide past. It was such a pain that I typically put off the job for months by parking on slopes so I could push start the car. The new starter is so light and tiny that it's a piece-o-cake to remove/install, but since it's so reliable I haven't touched it since the day I installed it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,589 Posts
Our van is getting up there in years and I just rolled 237,000 on it yesterday. Everything has been fairly decent for repairs and replacements. Only real bear of a job I had to do was replacing the rt (front) side exhaust header/catalytic converter that required pulled the fan shroud from radiator. I did replace the passengers side axle and CV joint and that was actually pretty easy. The starter is where I can reach it and the lights are easy to replace. I remember when we were car shopping when we bought it, I popped the hood and located where the common failing parts were located.
I still have to replace the drivers side axle when I get around to it (been busy with roof work), the front brakes again and the front struts. All in all, fairly easy replacements. Not too shabby for a 2010 grand caravan.
 
  • Like
Reactions: WoodyUSSLUCE

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,476 Posts
Speaking of batteries, every time I need one I go through sticker shock. Although a few years back I bought a 'reconditioned' one at a local 'U pull' salvage yard. ..... They warranted it for 6 months ....... it was still working fine after two years.

Still fortunate enough to do my oil changes, brake pads, minor repairs that are 'under the hood', but it ain't getting any easier.
Even oil changes are getting to be labor intensive anymore. Most newer cars have some kind of skid plate that requires removal to access the drain plug and filter. :rolleyes: Three tiny bolts hold the engine in place but some engineer figured that plastic skid plate needed 75 bolts and 50 push-pins. I often advise my customers to keep the oil and just change the car.

Honestly, I'd rather have a car come in that's misfiring, smokin', poppin' and bangin' like crazy, than one that just has a marker light out. With most cars, you can swap an engine a lot quicker and easier than you can replace a license plate light bulb. The price of many of the new bulbs is ridiculous too, some of the itty bitty fog light bulbs are over $30! A lot of people are gonna' get burned by the LEDs. I recently had a Ford popcan pickup that needed a tail light assembly. Luckily, his were incans because the cheapest LED I could find, was over $600.

Selfers, beware of the rear brakes. Research before ya' jump into anything. The electric parking brakes are becoming more common, kind of a different animal. Most can be done without a scan tool but there's a procedure to follow in retracting and recalibrating the caliper. It's mostly just a matter of activating and releasing the p-brake with onboard controls, a certain number of times before and after. If you're pushing in the piston and there's a crunching sound, you're gonna' need a new caliper.

New "special tools" are required almost daily. Many of the wheels on newer cars require thin-walled sockets, which aren't usually found at your local hardware or even auto parts store. Some front brake caliper bolts on Fords are an 11mm hex...:confused:...that's one of those sizes that nobody uses, never have. It's usually never included in any sets and can be hard to find separately. Spline drives are becoming essential nowadays too, most parts stores carry 'em though.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
34,943 Posts
Yes, I've learned that even changing oil is a PAIN on my Silverado, have to climb way up under there with the filter wrench and proper socket/ratchet for the the drain bolt. My shoulders don't work well anymore and it's painful, far more painful than paying the labor to have it done.

I recently changed the alternator on my Ford F150. I didn't have to climb under anything for that.

Lord, I hate repairing stuff, even my ATV. I used to not hate it, just DID it, but getting old is a bad deal.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
35,518 Posts
Yes, I've learned that even changing oil is a PAIN on my Silverado, have to climb way up under there with the filter wrench and proper socket/ratchet for the the drain bolt. My shoulders don't work well anymore and it's painful, far more painful than paying the labor to have it done.

I recently changed the alternator on my Ford F150. I didn't have to climb under anything for that.

Lord, I hate repairing stuff, even my ATV. I used to not hate it, just DID it, but getting old is a bad deal.
I was always a DIY guy. Then I found a shop that does my oil changes for ten bucks and I buy the synthetic oil and filter of my choice on sale where the price is best.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,000 Posts
I did the starter on my wife's Kia Sorento....glad we got rid of it! No room to work, had to put starter in then balance it and maneuver on ginger tips to get it to line up. Had to hold it from underneath but put bolts in from above!
It took 3 days, lots of cussing, and much pain in back, arms, and hands! Fortunately it cost $65 on Amazon.
My F150 starter went out but I had to tow it to dealer as I thought it was a security system issue. Tow was free, install and diagnostic was $400!!
I used to do much of my own stuff and enjoyed it.
Getting to be less and less!
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
17,584 Posts
Decades ago, I used to do a lot of my own Mechanic Work on Cars and worked for a Shop on the side.
Used to rebuild Engines without issue. Nowadays most Cars are just too difficult to work on.
My current repair activities are now limited to Brakes and Battery replacement and other very minor repairs. I don't even do Oil Changes anymore.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,086 Posts
Even oil changes are getting to be labor intensive anymore. Most newer cars have some kind of skid plate that requires removal to access the drain plug and filter. :rolleyes: Three tiny bolts hold the engine in place but some engineer figured that plastic skid plate needed 75 bolts and 50 push-pins. I often advise my customers to keep the oil and just change the car.

Honestly, I'd rather have a car come in that's misfiring, smokin', poppin' and bangin' like crazy, than one that just has a marker light out. With most cars, you can swap an engine a lot quicker and easier than you can replace a license plate light bulb. The price of many of the new bulbs is ridiculous too, some of the itty bitty fog light bulbs are over $30! A lot of people are gonna' get burned by the LEDs. I recently had a Ford popcan pickup that needed a tail light assembly. Luckily, his were incans because the cheapest LED I could find, was over $600.

Selfers, beware of the rear brakes. Research before ya' jump into anything. The electric parking brakes are becoming more common, kind of a different animal. Most can be done without a scan tool but there's a procedure to follow in retracting and recalibrating the caliper. It's mostly just a matter of activating and releasing the p-brake with onboard controls, a certain number of times before and after. If you're pushing in the piston and there's a crunching sound, you're gonna' need a new caliper.

New "special tools" are required almost daily. Many of the wheels on newer cars require thin-walled sockets, which aren't usually found at your local hardware or even auto parts store. Some front brake caliper bolts on Fords are an 11mm hex...:confused:...that's one of those sizes that nobody uses, never have. It's usually never included in any sets and can be hard to find separately. Spline drives are becoming essential nowadays too, most parts stores carry 'em though.
Yes, removing the 'cartridge' oil filter on the wifes Equinox is unbelievable. I manage it, and am a pretty good shade tree guy with a ton of tools, but they managed to come up with another design that makes it damn near impossible for the average person to perform a simple task, and I doubt that few do on this model.
 
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Top