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#200 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [Mr_Shiftright]
Oct 04, 2012 (12:38 pm)
It's hard to screw up shocks on a Chevy pickup, but I would cringe to have them change the oil on a Mini Cooper or a Subaru (oh, sorry, we drained your transmission by mistake!).
So you apparently have never made such a mistake, is that a function of your superior technical talents, or is it simply that you haven't had enough chances to have fate catch up with you?
No major league pitcher ever managed to strike me out. That's a fact that is based along a similar vein as your (or anyone else's) having never drained the wrong fluid, or misconnected battery cables. Given enough chances it would eventually happen.
Frankly as I read the last several responses I asked myself if any of you were qualified to perform those tasks unsupervised in a chain store, or my shop. I think it's safe to say it would be a regrettable decision (for the shop) to try and find out.
#201 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [thecardoc3]
Oct 04, 2012 (4:34 pm)
I think you are being a bit harsh on Shifty.
Check out his posts in some other forums and you will see he pretty savvy mechanically and in appraisals.
#203 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [thecardoc3]
Oct 04, 2012 (5:54 pm)
I'm not paid to be qualified. But I wouldn't trust someone with modest skill and credentials who spends most of the day changing oil on Camrys and the like to have perfect luck with my higher maintenance and extremely uncommon vehicles. And it is a good thing for those mechanics who can specialize - the indy MB shop who I patronize does a huge volume.
#204 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [thecardoc3]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Oct 04, 2012 (6:30 pm)
I thought it was pretty funny actually.
No seriously I think if I can rebuild Porsche engines I could put shocks on a Chevy.
But what i really want to say to Doc is that I know what I don't know, and this keeps me out of trouble.
#205 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [lemko]
Oct 04, 2012 (11:53 pm)
Well, actually your Northstar takes 7 1/2 quarts. At 8 quarts it's overfilled by 1/2 quart.
But I've been told it will pretty quickly blow that unneeded 1/2 quart out of the engine thru the PCV valve circuit.
Also, all 3 of the Northstars we've owned, the dipstick is miss-marked. At the required 7 1/2 quarts, it shows about a half quart low. So, when 8 quarts are put in it, it shows about right on the full mark on the stick. I've never understood what is going on here with the Northstar motors and their dipsticks.
#206 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [Mr_Shiftright]
Oct 06, 2012 (4:55 pm)
I wouldn't let a chain store lay a finger on my car.
That's my philosophy as well.
#207 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [fintail]
Oct 06, 2012 (5:27 pm)
I cringe at the thought of a chain place dealing with the ~8 quarts needed by the E55, or the fintail's cartridge/element style filter.
I recently changed the oil in an older friend's 2005 X3, and wound up having to rectify the mistakes made by the prior service "technician".
I had previously provided my friend with a contact at my dealer as well as at my indie BMW shop, recommending that he go to one or the other for everything but oil changes- and I had offered to perform the changes for just the cost of the oil and the filter.
Well, he didn't want to "impose" on me so instead he took it to a local shop for an oil change. Fast forward to a Saturday a while back, when he called and asked me if I could change the oil sometime that week as his local shop was busy. No problem; I stopped by my dealer and bought a filter and he brought the X3 over. However, once I got into the job I encountered a textbook example of why you NEVER take a BMW to "Bubba's Fix-It Emporium."
First off, the drain plug was extremely difficult to loosen; when I finally did break it loose I found that the plug was missing its copper sealing washer. Odds are that Bubba didn't see the washer fall off when he drained the oil; so when he reinstalled the plug without the washer it probably dripped- so he really cranked down on the drain plug to stop the leak. Idiot.
Next up was changing the filter. Bubba had used a Fram cartridge which had plastic end caps(which were crumbling) and a filter medium that had started to distort. The correct BMW filter -manufactured by Mann of Germany- cost me $10.85 while Fram's alleged "filter" costs $2.50 more. Such a deal...
The BMW filter also comes with a new drain plug sealing washer and a new o-ring for the oil filter housing cap. Anyway, I wiped out the filter housing as best I could, and I think I got 99.99% of the plastic bits from the worthless Fram piece.
Finally, I poured in the requisite amount of Mobil 1 0W-40 and proceeded to reset the Oil Service light. Of course Bubba hadn't done that either, probably because he thought it needed a special tool. Wrong again; the indicator is reset using only the ignition switch and the odometer reset button. And it's not exactly proprietary information, either- just type "BMW X3 SIA reset" into almost any search engine...
My friend kept trying to pay me for my labor, but for me, fixing everything Bubba screwed up was reward enough. It was a dead easy job- assuming that you have opposable thumbs, the correct parts, and the readily available reset information.
#208 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [roadburner]
Oct 06, 2012 (5:42 pm)
Wow. And that's why indy shops exist. Chain places might be good for Camcords, but specialty brands need specialty care.
The closest I have come to a chain place was buying a fintail battery at Sears...drove it right into their facility where a battery is supposed to be dropped in within minutes. Not so easy. I had to go into the storage area with one of the workers and pick out the correct (huge, designed for trucks) battery. The crew there got a kick out of the car though, and no harm was done.
#209 of 4850 Re: Forty nine dollars for a tire, and a coupon that said buy one, get one [roadburner]
Oct 08, 2012 (12:35 am)
Yea, this could be fun. How much effort should I put into responding to all of this?
First oil changes are routinely done by entry level technicians and yes people being who and what they are can make mistakes, especially if they get rushed or distracted during some operation. You say you found the drain plug gasket missing and the plug overtightened. I'll say that based on your post you failed to full fill all of the duties that a technician should have when doing the next service and compounded the problem.
Lets start with the oil filter. FRAM, that's a company who's products are not high on my own quality list and haven't been for years. They IMO took an approach that tried to cheapen the trade services and marketed directly to consumers, like you. When I see filters sold at retail for less than what I pay wholesale for the O.E. component I don't expect that they will really meet my customers needs and therefore cannot justify trying to use them. However that has in turn caused a problem, the consumer see's that KMART advertisement for a FRAM oil filter and assumes that price is a fair value, and then when they get our bill don't understand why the filter we use cost them five times as much.
Lately Jay Buckley from FRAM started spending a lot more time on the iATN and has been working to try and repair the companies image. They have in the last few years backed off from advertising that hurt shops, and have been making great strides to manufacture everything here in the USA. Previously a lot of their products were being made overseas and when they have found issues they have been addressing them. You report here that you found a filter with the end caps failing, did you contact them with your dicovery? Had you of done that they would have requested the filter to be returned so that they could investigate why it happened. Did you get all of the fragments out of the filter housing? Are you sure none made it past and into the oil galleys where flow could be restricted? Do you have insurance for working on someone else's car because if you failed to get all of the pieces out, you are now the last one to touch it and are now liable should his engine fail. Had Fram been notified of the failure and that likely concern that pieces may have made it into the engine they would have stepped up and made sure that the owner was protected should a failure occur. But you didn't tell them about it did you?
You need to go take a seat beside the apprentice who misplaced the drain plug gasket, you have a lot in common with him/her, JMHO.