Last post on Mar 11, 2013 at 11:20 AM
You are in the Volkswagen Jetta
What is this discussion about?
Honda Civic, Volkswagen Jetta, Sedan
#451 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [targettuning]
Mar 10, 2007 (9:49 am)
Could you explain in a little more detail why diesel engines are more expensive to work on? I've been looking into buying a Jetta TDI and wasn't aware of this. I'd really appreciate the help. Thanks!
#452 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [renodavid]
Mar 10, 2007 (9:54 am)
Actually they are not. The problem and opportunity is not many mechanics know how or specialize on diesels. This is also true of independent shops/vendors.
Right now it is similar to hybrid mechanics.
So as a result, some specialized shops have taken to charging a premium. It is sort of the difference between what a Toyota vs Lexus dealer charges.
Also Honda's brake components (in the community) have a reputation for wearing out faster than other brands. While Honda has never addressed that publicly, (to my knowledge) so I will stand corrected with any postings or links. I understand the newer models 2007 have so called beefer rotors and pads combinations. Again, I do not know many 2007's with 100,000 miles so would defer to those with those experiences.
#453 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [ruking1]
Mar 12, 2007 (3:53 am)
While I do not have first hand knowledge of specific repair costs of gas verses diesel I BELIEVE in general diesel engines while not having all the ignition parts a gas engine has (although these parts cause very few problems these days) do have some parts that are diesel specific. Some things that are used only in a diesel...maybe a high dollar fuel injector pump?? In addition, while the internal components are similar to gas the costs are greater for labor and most probably parts. You will also probably have a harder time finding a "run of the mill" local mechanic willing to work on one. As I said I do not have first hand experience but if labor cost alone (not to mention more expensive parts) is considered they ARE more expensive to work on than gas engines.
#454 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [ruking1]
Mar 12, 2007 (4:05 am)
I didn't make the assertion the one verses the other would be cheaper to run only that there are so many variables that you cannot predict. Apparently you own both, a little fact I missed originally so yes you can chart them side-by-side and continue to monitor. My post was based on the assumption you owned one but speculated on the other...my mistake.
#455 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [targettuning]
Mar 12, 2007 (5:54 am)
Truly as you surmise and state, there are some "diesel" specific items. But there are truly some gasser specific ones also. We just do not normally refer to and think of those itmes as gasser specific for 97% of the passenger vehicle fleet ARE gassers.
For example; a very subtle shift, but a shift nonetheless, I have to/should make sure the glow plug lamp goes out before I crank it up.
#456 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [ruking1]
Mar 12, 2007 (8:44 am)
Yes, there are items found on only gasoline engines and not on diesels. Mainly they involve ignition components and spark plugs. Years ago I could have pointed to the distributor..the coil...distributor cap and rotor...plug wires...ignition module within the distributor and finally the plugs themselves all as potential trouble points the diesel didn't have. However, most of these individual components have been eliminated with inception of "coil on plug" modules that effectively do away with everything except the plugs and they now last upwards of 100K miles. So for all practical purposes the ignition system on a modern car has been so simplified that ignition problems (due to the sheer number of components ripe for possible individual failure)has all but been eliminated. Frankly the ignition system was about all the diesel has over a gas engine in its favor (with regard to potential extra repair items and costs) in as much as a diesel doesn't have one. A diesel does have that expensive injector pump, at least I guess they still have them. And instead of a $2.00 spark plug you have glow plugs that cost how much? Oh, I almost forgot what about that expensive turbo? (or two as on the new Ford Powerstroke)?? Virtually everything else is common..both have starter motors ( more expensive on a diesel due to it needing to be more powerful to crank a diesel)..alternators (more expensive on a diesel due to that extra powerful starting system and maybe two batteries)..water pump and radiator (possibly more expensive on a diesel due to the need for being larger to cope with the extra heat generated. You have all the internal components e.g crankshaft,bearings,pistons, connecting rods, valves etc. except all these pieces are made stronger due to the high compression of a diesel(costing more of course),and lets not forget extra large (and extra expensive fuel and possibly oil filters). And finally, as both you and I have stated labor costs are likely more due to the specalized mechanic needed to do any work on a diesel. They MAY last longer (I am not talking commercial truck diesels)between the need for internal rebuilds..BUT my last 1987 Ford taurus had 293,000 miles when I sold it last fall and the new owner drove it away. Most modern gas engines can do 100K miles without trouble and 200K with regular maintainance. I should add,it (my Taurus) used no oil did not smoke and was quiet...so aside from fuel economy what benefit a diesel? I will finish by stating I LIKE diesels and would like to be able to buy one in the brand of my choice but the argument a diesel isn't more expensive to maintain and repair than a gas engine..nah.
#457 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [targettuning]
Mar 12, 2007 (9:11 am)
..."$2.00 spark plug you have glow plugs that cost how much? "...
I just about fell out getting the price for 4 each spark plugs NGK PZFR6F-11. 17.03 per, retail = $68.12. Of course you can google.
Glow plugs are not a "scheduled maintenance" type item, such as Honda Civic spark plugs. But $60. per 4 each. Truth is you can replace just one or up to 4.
Congradulations. Got to hand it to you, 293k on a FORD Taurus!! Woo Hoo! What do you swag was your mpg? It might be a stretch to assume you had NO unscheduled maintenance!? EVERYONE I knew with a Ford Taurus had very expensive issues, well below even 100,000 miles. My neighbor of at least 18 years, got Fords exclusively. He was/is almost totally meticulous in DIY. Yet, he had expensive issues on every one of his Ford's. His OCI's were 3/5 k and he used Motorcraft oil and filters. So the truth is I have helped him in his DIY. He of course wondered to himself and out loud at times, how I even considered going to 15,000 to 25,000 mile OCI's, but again he has helped me with all of mine.
Now if my Honda Civic gets to 315,000 miles (3 timing belt changes, 105k miles per) I'd be a happy camper. My goal is keep this in operation as long as possible even past 315k.
On the VW, past my initial misgivings, is seems to be no brainer at 90,000 to go to 300,000 miles. The timing belt change is due at 100,000 miles. If folks are interested I will report. But I have seen my timing belt guru do 15 of them, so I do not anticipate anything out of the ordinary, i.e., road hypnosis
#458 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [ruking1]
Mar 12, 2007 (11:09 am)
I seldom bought plugs anywhere but an auto part store where you can buy Bosch platinum in a variety of electrode numbers from 1 to 4 for maybe $5-6.00 per plug for the 4 electrode version and lesser electrodes for something less. I did pay something over $60.00 for six plugs recently for our Dodge Stratus...this at the dealer while the car was in for something else. I don't know if one can even get non-platinum plugs yet but they should be fairly cheap at Pep Boys.
With regards to the Taurus first I have a question..what does "swag" mean? But fuel economy was reasonable on most of the six or seven Sable/Taurus I owned. Around 20 in town and I saw as much as 29-30 on several long (once to Dallas Tx from Pa and once to Florida from Pa)trips. All were the 3.0 liter Vulcan engine and none of them required anything except alternators, waterpumps, on starter motor, and oil changes. The 87 wagon had the highest mileage but I also had an 87 LX sedan earlier that had 190K miles when sold.It too ran fine. Additionally there was an 87 Sable wagon the had around 160K miles when sold. The biggest(most expensive) issue were automatic transmissions. The sedan had the original transmission when sold 190K the Taurus wagon had a transmission explode at around 180K miles and it was replaced with a reman. The Sable was only a bit over 100K when the original went and the salvage yard replacement was on its way out at 160K. Yeah there were other issues, lots of them along the way but the 3.0 Vulcan V-6 in my opinion is/was one of Fords best.
#459 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [targettuning]
Mar 12, 2007 (11:16 am)
Scientific Wild Ass Guess. SWAG
First off I am a tad confused, You got 293k miles on one or several? Your follow up posts indicate several. Again, correct me if I am wrong.
I don't know how to say this but; alternators, starters, batteries, water pumps are sort of unscheduled, BUT scheduled maintenance items. However, anecdotally they do last however long they do last, i.e., do have a cost per cycle so to speak. If anyone is confused by this seemingly double talk, let me know. DIY folks and maintenance types do understand.
One of the things about 4 bangers is the timing belt change at app 100/105k. The good news, belts are more precise and obviously changed at the scheduled intervals refresh for another 100/105 mile cycle. The bad news is they stretch and can break and the design.
The older A-3 gen VW Jetta's put the water pump out of line. So in effect a water pump is good to go to at least 250,000 miles. BUT if it doesn't, you do not have to change the timing belt and is a simple ( less than 20 min) procedure vs a timing belt procedure of 2/6 hours. Both Honda (75 plus shipping) and A-4 gen (60 plus shipping) put the water pump in line. So even though it can be good to go to 200,000/250,000 miles it makes sense to change the water pump (early) at the 100/150 mile cycle (SAME LABOR COST). The reason is IF it does leak you have to perform the same belt change to change the water pump.
#460 of 498 Re: long life tires..brakes...etc [ruking1]
Mar 13, 2007 (3:39 am)
To help clear things up then...a 1987 Taurus wagon = 293K miles. a 1987 Taurus LX sedan = approx 188K miles a 1986 Sable wagon = approx 160K miles. I owned about 6 or 7 of these from the 1986 to 1989 model years but these three reached the highest mileage before disposing of/selling them. I bought them used after they were more than a couple of years old and drove the hell out of them. They fit my needs back then especially the station wagon versions. I kept the 87 wagon with 293K the longest (13 years). I never computed the cost to own any car I had but remember some were more problematic than others. When you keep a car as long as I kept some of these replacing alternators etc is inevitable. The only one that stands out was the 87 LX sedan which had an immense amount of small to medium problems mostly electrical (power window motors..power locks...climate control/AC wiring etc) it was in the shop more than any car I have ever owned however the Vulcan 3.0 V-6 ran flawlessly on all.