Car servicing

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jackal
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Car servicing

Post by jackal » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am

Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Thank you.

Hypersion
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Re: Car servicing

Post by Hypersion » Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:39 am

I've had good experience using yelp to find automobile repair shops.

tenkuky
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Re: Car servicing

Post by tenkuky » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:00 am

This is a very local question. Depends where you live.
If you generally post location (I assume in AZ), other boarders can give word-of-mouth recommendations.
Apart from yelp, look at suggestions on this webpage.
https://www.consumerreports.org/car-rep ... d-repairs/

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:10 am

Dealers always find problems where there are none. If you did everything they recommend it would cost you $500 every visit. Oh wait, you do and it does.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

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8foot7
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Re: Car servicing

Post by 8foot7 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:29 am

Stop taking the car to the dealer after the warranty is up. Find a local mechanic.

daheld
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Re: Car servicing

Post by daheld » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:30 am

This is going to depend entirely on where you are. I generally think it's a good idea to find an independent, locally owned shop. Chances are, there's a higher likelihood they'll be less inclined to try and nickel and dime you and upsell.

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Toons
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Re: Car servicing

Post by Toons » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:35 am

How often does a Civic Need to go in for service?
:happy
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Rupert
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Re: Car servicing

Post by Rupert » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:45 am

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Thinking of switching dealers.
:oops: Don't take your out-of-warranty car to any dealer. Find an independent mechanic who specializes in Japanese imports. Some even specialize in Hondas. Word-of-mouth is the best way to find one.

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jharkin
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jharkin » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am

Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.

BTW - even IN warranty you don't have to take the car to the dealer for scheduled maintenance.. Oil changes, tire rotations, and wear items like brakes can be done at a local shop. They may try to scare you about warranty coverage but that's BS... the warranty coverage is good at any dealer no matter where you bought the car and no matter where you have regular maintenance done.

Only go to the dealer for warranty covered repairs.
Last edited by jharkin on Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

123
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Re: Car servicing

Post by 123 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:48 am

It's time to find an independent repair shop. I have used one for our Toyota and it's been great. One guy is in charge and he has 2 or 3 helpers/mechanics that work with him. Sure the shop may look worn, needs a paint job, no waiting room, no free coffee but the guy you talk to is likely the guy that actually evaluates and works on your car, that's priceless. You may have to schedule a day to bring it in for service (a good sign), it's not an emergency room for cars like a dealership where mechanics twiddle their thumbs waiting for people to come in. The independent repair shop is more conscious of costs, they may give options that are consistent with the vehicle age and mileage. Brake work at my independent repair shop is generally 1/3 or 1/2 of cost at the dealership. When I had a power window motor replaced it cost me $200 parts and labor whereas the dealer charge would have been $500+.

With an independent repair shop it's helpful to be more proactive about repairs. If you need brake work TODAY because your spouse can't stand the squeeks your primary choice might be the dealership emergency room.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:21 pm

123 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:48 am
With an independent repair shop it's helpful to be more proactive about repairs. If you need brake work TODAY because your spouse can't stand the squeeks your primary choice might be the dealership emergency room.
Naw. There are lots of muffler shops that also do brakes and fluid changes. Just get there early in the morning because it's often first come, first serve.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm

jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:29 pm

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Thank you.
No way to tell you: you need to find it for yourself good mechanics in the area. But as others have posted, do not go to dealers for this car (or any other car, unless maintenance is free). Get multiple quotes, a good mechanic is harder to find..

armeliusc
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Re: Car servicing

Post by armeliusc » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:34 pm

Find a good, local independent mechanic. Do the maintenance per recommendation by the manual. Unless something is broken, you do not need to do more than that.

I am lucky enough to find a local trusted shop that I started to bring our Civic to then when it was brand new. The manual specifically says you don't have to do regular maintenance at a dealer to keep your warranty; you just have to get it done.

crake
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Re: Car servicing

Post by crake » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:39 pm

TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
A transmission fluid change costs about 20 dollars in fluid. A coolant change is about 15 dollars. Those are the prices for OEM fluids, not after market. Spark plugs would cost about 40 dollars.

jackal
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jackal » Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:50 pm

Appreciate the input! I live in Arizona and I’m going to use consumer reports and yelp. Appreciate your help.

inbox788
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Re: Car servicing

Post by inbox788 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:10 pm

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Can you list the problems you've had (describe them) and the ones the dealer found? How many, when and at what mileage? 2 or 3 problems? 5 or more?

Many service recommendations are not required, and if I was making $500/recommendation, I'd be making as many as I could get away with, but once in a while, there are real problems that should be addressed in a timely manner.

Finding a good mechanic is like finding a good financial adviser and the dealer is like Merrill Lynch Wealth Management or Edward Jones. Get recommendations from friends and family, but realize they may not be the best judge. And even Yelp reviews don't guarantee a good outcome, just that they focus more on customer service. Some that get good reviews might rip you off less than dealers, but do it nicely.

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:32 pm

crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:39 pm
TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
A transmission fluid change costs about 20 dollars in fluid. A coolant change is about 15 dollars. Those are the prices for OEM fluids, not after market. Spark plugs would cost about 40 dollars.
As I said, this all assuming OP is inclined and wants to do the work himself. And if not, to get him started he will need some basic tools which will easily run the total higher.
I question the bad advise that anything about $100 is getting ripped off. That is ridiculous, especially for someone who doesn’t do the work himself.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:35 pm

armeliusc wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:34 pm
Find a good, local independent mechanic. Do the maintenance per recommendation by the manual. Unless something is broken, you do not need to do more than that.

I am lucky enough to find a local trusted shop that I started to bring our Civic to then when it was brand new. The manual specifically says you don't have to do regular maintenance at a dealer to keep your warranty; you just have to get it done.
But make sure you keep all your receipts so you can prove you had it done
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

A440
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Re: Car servicing

Post by A440 » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:37 pm

8foot7 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:29 am
Stop taking the car to the dealer after the warranty is up. Find a local mechanic.
+1
Try to avoid the "stealership" unless it is warranty work.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:38 pm

crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:39 pm
TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
A transmission fluid change costs about 20 dollars in fluid. A coolant change is about 15 dollars. Those are the prices for OEM fluids, not after market. Spark plugs would cost about 40 dollars.
And they do all that for free? What about the transmission filter?
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

crake
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Re: Car servicing

Post by crake » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:56 pm

TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:32 pm
crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:39 pm
TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
A transmission fluid change costs about 20 dollars in fluid. A coolant change is about 15 dollars. Those are the prices for OEM fluids, not after market. Spark plugs would cost about 40 dollars.
As I said, this all assuming OP is inclined and wants to do the work himself. And if not, to get him started he will need some basic tools which will easily run the total higher.
I question the bad advise that anything about $100 is getting ripped off. That is ridiculous, especially for someone who doesn’t do the work himself.
I was referring specifically to your statement that "Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it."

I have a 2013 Honda Fit which I DIY all maintenance. Over 5.5 years I've spent on average 62.89 per year maintaining the car per the owners manual. If I include new tires I average 160.43 per year, but the new ones still have half their tread left. This car is driven approximately 20k miles per year. If your mileage is half of mine your maintenance costs would be as well. My point is that 100 dollars per year is a reasonable estimate for how much a new Honda should cost to maintain per year if you DIY.
Last edited by crake on Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.

crake
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Re: Car servicing

Post by crake » Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:59 pm

cheese_breath wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:38 pm
crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:39 pm
TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
A transmission fluid change costs about 20 dollars in fluid. A coolant change is about 15 dollars. Those are the prices for OEM fluids, not after market. Spark plugs would cost about 40 dollars.
And they do all that for free? What about the transmission filter?
To my knowledge Honda does not recommend ever replacing the transmission filter. The dealer will certainly not be replacing it during a regular transmission fluid change. I am aware that service centers charge for service. I was referring specifically to the statement that even taking car of these items yourself will cost more than 100 dollars.

jackal
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jackal » Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:40 pm

inbox788 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:10 pm
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Can you list the problems you've had (describe them) and the ones the dealer found? How many, when and at what mileage? 2 or 3 problems? 5 or more?

Many service recommendations are not required, and if I was making $500/recommendation, I'd be making as many as I could get away with, but once in a while, there are real problems that should be addressed in a timely manner.

Finding a good mechanic is like finding a good financial adviser and the dealer is like Merrill Lynch Wealth Management or Edward Jones. Get recommendations from friends and family, but realize they may not be the best judge. And even Yelp reviews don't guarantee a good outcome, just that they focus more on customer service. Some that get good reviews might rip you off less than dealers, but do it nicely.
1. Cabin hepa filter replacement.
2. Brake flush since fluid looked dirty
3. Alignment since l/r tires showed inner cupping.
4. Recommend changing engine air filter next time. Did not get this done.

These cost 250.
Service b13 cost about 185.
Taxed and disposal costs on top of this.

Last service was in March. Don’t drive much other than 1-2 long drives per year.

Thank you!

denovo
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Re: Car servicing

Post by denovo » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:21 am

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Thank you.
Stop going to dealers
"Don't trust everything you read on the Internet"- Abraham Lincoln

BarbBrooklyn
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Location: NYC

Re: Car servicing

Post by BarbBrooklyn » Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:44 am

Google "The Car Guys"--Ray and Tom Magliacci who used to do the Car Talk show on NPR. On their site there is a list, searchable by zip code, of mechanics that other folks have had good experiences with. I found my mechanic there, as well as the backup mechanic I use when the first guy is closed.

If you use the dealer for a special deal oil change (something I used to do regularly, because it meant I didn't have to find a parking spot for the day in a dense neighborhood) and they find something they want to fix, you simply say "I don't have the time/money/whatever to do that this time" and have the mechanic check it out.
BarbBrooklyn | "The enemy of a good plan is the dream of a perfect plan."

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:37 am

crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:56 pm

I was referring specifically to your statement that "Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it."
That has not been my experience. For instance this year:
$30 on synthetic oil
$30 on 4 quarts of ATF
$30 on VTM-4 (rear diff) fluid
$23 engine fillter
$14 cabin filter

I haven't yet added the cost for washers, hand pump for rear diff and ATF change etc.

None of these seem unreasonable to me, and therefore my comment that you can easily run it above $100.
crake wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:56 pm
My point is that 100 dollars per year is a reasonable estimate for how much a new Honda should cost to maintain per year if you DIY.
OPs car is 2010, hardly new. For reference my car is 2015, so generally we can expect to have more not less expenses for auto maintenance.

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:43 am

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:40 pm

1. Cabin hepa filter replacement.
2. Brake flush since fluid looked dirty
3. Alignment since l/r tires showed inner cupping.
4. Recommend changing engine air filter next time. Did not get this done.

These cost 250.
Service b13 cost about 185.
Taxed and disposal costs on top of this.

Last service was in March. Don’t drive much other than 1-2 long drives per year.

Thank you!
If they flushed brake fluid and wheel alignment, I would expect to pay ~$250 and that is not unreasonable. Out of those you can easily replace both cabin and engine filter for ~$40 in parts. So if you don't feel like doing oil changes yourself, atleast you can change filters and save some money that way.
B13 is engine oil, transmission fluid, and diff (if any) fluid replacement and tire rotation. $185 seems reasonable to me.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:31 am

jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:40 pm
inbox788 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:10 pm
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Can you list the problems you've had (describe them) and the ones the dealer found? How many, when and at what mileage? 2 or 3 problems? 5 or more?

Many service recommendations are not required, and if I was making $500/recommendation, I'd be making as many as I could get away with, but once in a while, there are real problems that should be addressed in a timely manner.

Finding a good mechanic is like finding a good financial adviser and the dealer is like Merrill Lynch Wealth Management or Edward Jones. Get recommendations from friends and family, but realize they may not be the best judge. And even Yelp reviews don't guarantee a good outcome, just that they focus more on customer service. Some that get good reviews might rip you off less than dealers, but do it nicely.
1. Cabin hepa filter replacement.
2. Brake flush since fluid looked dirty
3. Alignment since l/r tires showed inner cupping.
4. Recommend changing engine air filter next time. Did not get this done.

These cost 250.
Service b13 cost about 185.
Taxed and disposal costs on top of this.

Last service was in March. Don’t drive much other than 1-2 long drives per year.

Thank you!
I've had many cars, many in double digit age and I've never had my brake fluid flushed. About 3 years ago I went to Midas for one of their inexpensive 'loss leader' oil changes, and they tried to convince me to do it. I declined. Sometime later I went to Tuffy for a coolant change, and the owner there said he's never had his brake fluid flushed either.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

armeliusc
Posts: 278
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:40 am

Re: Car servicing

Post by armeliusc » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:09 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:31 am
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:40 pm
inbox788 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:10 pm
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Can you list the problems you've had (describe them) and the ones the dealer found? How many, when and at what mileage? 2 or 3 problems? 5 or more?

Many service recommendations are not required, and if I was making $500/recommendation, I'd be making as many as I could get away with, but once in a while, there are real problems that should be addressed in a timely manner.

Finding a good mechanic is like finding a good financial adviser and the dealer is like Merrill Lynch Wealth Management or Edward Jones. Get recommendations from friends and family, but realize they may not be the best judge. And even Yelp reviews don't guarantee a good outcome, just that they focus more on customer service. Some that get good reviews might rip you off less than dealers, but do it nicely.
1. Cabin hepa filter replacement.
2. Brake flush since fluid looked dirty
3. Alignment since l/r tires showed inner cupping.
4. Recommend changing engine air filter next time. Did not get this done.

These cost 250.
Service b13 cost about 185.
Taxed and disposal costs on top of this.

Last service was in March. Don’t drive much other than 1-2 long drives per year.

Thank you!
I've had many cars, many in double digit age and I've never had my brake fluid flushed. About 3 years ago I went to Midas for one of their inexpensive 'loss leader' oil changes, and they tried to convince me to do it. I declined. Sometime later I went to Tuffy for a coolant change, and the owner there said he's never had his brake fluid flushed either.
Honda manual specifically says 'replace brake fluid every 3 years regardless of mileage'. Brake fluid accumulate moisture, which can corrode brake components, and affect the hydraulic pressure for braking. I would not risk having braking issue for an ~$80 cost of replacing brake fluid every three years or so.

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DanMahowny
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Re: Car servicing

Post by DanMahowny » Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:25 am

I'm always suspicious when someone's advice is tied to their compensation.

It's a battle I fight often.
Funding secured

dsmil
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Re: Car servicing

Post by dsmil » Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:50 am

I like going to local mechanics, like a shop at a gas station. I've been using a couple of local mechanics for the past 5 years, and they've been very reasonable and only charge me for things that I need. The dealers and the big chains like Pep Boys have always found ways to charge me for unnecessary things. They seemed to always want to charge me hundreds of dollars each visit for fluid flushes and such. The last time that I looked for a new mechanic, I wound up looking for reviews on Yelp and called to get quotes for a pricey repair that I needed done. I went with the best quote and they've been very good to me.

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bottlecap
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Re: Car servicing

Post by bottlecap » Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:55 am

As others have said, the issue is that you take it to dealers. Take it to a busy independent.

JT

NHRATA01
Posts: 500
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Location: New York City area

Re: Car servicing

Post by NHRATA01 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:57 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 8:31 am
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:40 pm
inbox788 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 2:10 pm
jackal wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 10:25 am
Own a 2010 Honda Civic and the dealer seems to keep finding new problems and each service runs me 500 or so. Thinking of switching dealers. Any suggestions on where to take my car? Currently I use a Honda dealer.
Can you list the problems you've had (describe them) and the ones the dealer found? How many, when and at what mileage? 2 or 3 problems? 5 or more?

Many service recommendations are not required, and if I was making $500/recommendation, I'd be making as many as I could get away with, but once in a while, there are real problems that should be addressed in a timely manner.

Finding a good mechanic is like finding a good financial adviser and the dealer is like Merrill Lynch Wealth Management or Edward Jones. Get recommendations from friends and family, but realize they may not be the best judge. And even Yelp reviews don't guarantee a good outcome, just that they focus more on customer service. Some that get good reviews might rip you off less than dealers, but do it nicely.
1. Cabin hepa filter replacement.
2. Brake flush since fluid looked dirty
3. Alignment since l/r tires showed inner cupping.
4. Recommend changing engine air filter next time. Did not get this done.

These cost 250.
Service b13 cost about 185.
Taxed and disposal costs on top of this.

Last service was in March. Don’t drive much other than 1-2 long drives per year.

Thank you!
I've had many cars, many in double digit age and I've never had my brake fluid flushed. About 3 years ago I went to Midas for one of their inexpensive 'loss leader' oil changes, and they tried to convince me to do it. I declined. Sometime later I went to Tuffy for a coolant change, and the owner there said he's never had his brake fluid flushed either.
That doesn't mean it's right. Brake fluid is probably the most commonly neglected fluid that really shouldn't be neglected. If it's turned dark it should be done. Proper maintenance would be about every 3 years regardless of mileage. At minimum it should be done when the pads are done - since you're already in there. You'll notice a difference in pedal firmness with fresh fluid, not to speak of the fact old fluid tends to corrode parts and swell seals over time.

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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Car servicing

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Oct 18, 2018 12:09 pm

BH may be the only place on the internet where a poster could advised that electronic safety features are absolutely necessary but it is ok to disregard the manufacturer's recommendation to change brake fluid every three years :oops:

A sure way to avoid being ripped off by dealerships is to avoid them. The optimal way may be to educate yourself enough about cars to ask for services that are needed rather than letting the dealer sell you something that is not necessary. Of course there will be some things that most people will be at the complete mercy of the dealer (or any independent mechanic for that matter.)

I have generally avoided dealerships for service after the warranty expired due to hard sells of unnecessary services. I have found that for my current car, the local dealership's prices are very competitive with independent shops. They also have never tried to push anything on me, so I still take my car there for everything that I can't (or am unwilling to) do. DW takes her car to an independent shop for most services but to the dealership for some items as it is still in warranty. My old car that college-attending DS is driving will never see a dealership again. One size does not fit all.

inbox788
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Re: Car servicing

Post by inbox788 » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:30 pm

NHRATA01 wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:57 am
That doesn't mean it's right. Brake fluid is probably the most commonly neglected fluid that really shouldn't be neglected. If it's turned dark it should be done. Proper maintenance would be about every 3 years regardless of mileage. At minimum it should be done when the pads are done - since you're already in there. You'll notice a difference in pedal firmness with fresh fluid, not to speak of the fact old fluid tends to corrode parts and swell seals over time.
Some fluids look dirty, but that's how they work (e.g. diesel engine oil). Brake fluid does not circulate, so dirty brake fluid in the reservoir is way too late and changing just the fluid in the reservoir isn't going to help, but some unscrupulous mechanics do just that and only that.

Same with air filters. White air filters get dirty very quickly with a little dust, but if you hold it up to the light, it's still translucent, so it's still working somewhat. Neither looking at it directly or indirectly with really tell you how well it's filtering, and often basing a decision on that can be wrong.

Unfortunately, many folks rate mechanics on how well they're treated and misconceptions rather than "proper maintenance".

nick evets
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Re: Car servicing

Post by nick evets » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:46 pm

I recently brought my Tundra in for service at the dealership because it needed an emissions inspection, and I had a coupon for an oil change that brought to the cost to DIY levels. (Weird how motor oil prices haven't fallen over the years). The Tundra is a pain, anyway, as it uses a cartridge-based filter, and has a heavy skid-plate that needs to be removed....

I was a little amused and shocked at how high-tech the service "sales" aspect has become. I received a txt in the waiting room with a link to my vehicles 'custom report' on a webpage with FAILURE's and PASSES, and videos for the service items explaining how important and urgent they were.

Had I accepted the report and done everything my $82 emissions inspection and oil change would have been $3200. No joke. (Granted, this included S1200 for tires, which I do need soon).

tydas
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Re: Car servicing

Post by tydas » Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:48 pm

If your town has a facebook group that is a good place to find mechanic recommendations...

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Fri Oct 19, 2018 9:00 am

nick evets wrote:
Thu Oct 18, 2018 1:46 pm
I recently brought my Tundra in for service at the dealership because it needed an emissions inspection, and I had a coupon for an oil change that brought to the cost to DIY levels. (Weird how motor oil prices haven't fallen over the years). The Tundra is a pain, anyway, as it uses a cartridge-based filter, and has a heavy skid-plate that needs to be removed....

I was a little amused and shocked at how high-tech the service "sales" aspect has become. I received a txt in the waiting room with a link to my vehicles 'custom report' on a webpage with FAILURE's and PASSES, and videos for the service items explaining how important and urgent they were.

Had I accepted the report and done everything my $82 emissions inspection and oil change would have been $3200. No joke. (Granted, this included S1200 for tires, which I do need soon).
:D
I had a similar experience when I did oil change for my wife's car (same reason, coupon was so close to the price of oil that I took it in). I had changed transmission oil and cabin filter the week before, so I knew they were good. After giving my car to the 'service manager', I was waiting in the lobby. The manager showed up ~20 minutes later and says 'my technician tells me that cabin filter is very dirty, and that transmission oil looks like is mostly done and needs replacement. He recommends that I take care of it rightaway, and that will be $225 to fix it'. :happy

I politely refused. But these things become a regular occurrence when car gets older (mine is 4 years old!).

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tennisplyr
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Re: Car servicing

Post by tennisplyr » Fri Oct 19, 2018 4:58 pm

Try to find a reputable local mechanic, you're being taken advantage of.
Those who move forward with a happy spirit will find that things always work out.

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weltschmerz
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Re: Car servicing

Post by weltschmerz » Sun Oct 21, 2018 6:31 pm

Reading through these posts, it seems like the overwhelming majority of Bogleheads use independent mechanics. I am driving a 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee with a big V8 engine, and I have a different perspective, I have gone to the dealer (San Diego Jeep) for much of my service. When I first bought the car, I knew that Jeeps were not super reliable, so I bought an extended warranty (and over the years it paid for itself). I got used to going to the dealer, and I still do. Here is my reasoning:

1) Oil and oil filter changes. These are cheap, I go to the dealer for these, since they have an Express Lane that gets me done in less than an hour. Just had this done last week, and they even did some recall work for me, installing some brake booster part that they had on hand. Quick and painless. I can change my own oil, but it’s worth it to me to have them do it to avoid the mess and the used oil disposal. People claim that they have the most inexperienced people doing the oil changes, and that may be true, but I check my oil levels after the engine cools, and they are putting in the exact right amount of oil for my V8, so I’m happy. The prices are a probably a little higher than the independents and the Jiffy Lubes, but we’re talking about a sub-$100 service, not worth shopping around for.

2) Engine air filter and cabin air filter. These take minutes to change on your own, so I buy these online from Rock Auto and do it myself. The guy at the Jeep dealer said he’d change the cabin air filter for $90. I went online and bought the Jeep part for $20 and changed it in about 2 minutes. I changed the engine air filter at the same time, another 2 minute job.

3) Tires. I go to Discount Tire for this. I have also used Costco and Firestone in the past, the dealers just can’t compete on prices here. Be careful though, they don’t always torque the nuts correctly. I just got a new set of tires about 2 weeks ago from Discount Tire, and I went to check that the lug nuts were tight enough, turns out they are so tight, I can’t even move them. Now I need to go online to Harbor Freight and buy a Breaker Bar to get them loose. I will also buy a torque wrench so they are torqued correctly. I’m glad I found this before being stranded on the side of the road. I hope they didn’t mess up my bolts by overtorquing.

4) Repairs. I go to the dealer for this. I don’t want to go to an independent, they may not have seen my exact problem before, and they may not have the right parts to fix it. For instance, my Jeep currently has no air conditioning. Could be several things that are simple to fix, a bad compressor, or low refrigerant, or it could be more serious. The HVAC system is a known problem with the 2011 Jeep GC, so I bet that if I bring it to the dealer, they will know exactly how to fix it, and it will be done quickly. I will pay extra for that assurance.

If I could find a great independent mechanic who specializes in Jeeps, I might consider them, but at this point, I’ll probably just stick with the dealer. Sure they try to upsell you on unnecessary stuff (fluid flushes, filter changes), but I remain strong and tell them No, and they have generally done a good job for me. Also the sales manager always calls me after the service to try to sell me a new car and buy my Jeep, but I brush this off as well.

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jharkin
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jharkin » Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm

TheOscarGuy wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:26 pm
jharkin wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:47 am
Find a good local mechanic! A 2010 Civic shouldn't have needed anything but regular oil changes and a couple of brake fluid flushes by now. It may have come due for one radiator and transmission fluid change depending on how many miles you put on. Spark plugs may be coming up soon (105k)

Spending more than about $100 a year on service is a ripoff on that car.
This is very confusing -- so it may need a radiator and transmission fluid change, and still spending more than $100 is a ripoff? Even taking care of these maintenance items yourself will run you higher than that, assuming OP really is inclined and willing to do it.
How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.

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weltschmerz
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Re: Car servicing

Post by weltschmerz » Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:34 pm

jharkin wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm
How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.
To many people, the price of the fluids (and the time to change them) is not the issue, since there is no way they are going to crawl under the car, perform the service, then deal with disposal of the old fluids.

Nicolas
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Re: Car servicing

Post by Nicolas » Sun Oct 21, 2018 10:22 pm

8foot7 wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 11:29 am
Stop taking the car to the dealer after the warranty is up. Find a local mechanic.
+1, never go to a dealer especially for so simple a car. I found an honest local mechanic 20 or so years ago and I've saved thousands.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Car servicing

Post by cheese_breath » Sun Oct 21, 2018 10:34 pm

weltschmerz wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:34 pm
jharkin wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm
How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.
To many people, the price of the fluids (and the time to change them) is not the issue, since there is no way they are going to crawl under the car, perform the service, then deal with disposal of the old fluids.
Ah for the good old days when there was room under the hood. Just reach in from the top, turn the petcock on the side of the block, and let 'er drain.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

stimulacra
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Re: Car servicing

Post by stimulacra » Sun Oct 21, 2018 11:55 pm

weltschmerz wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 6:31 pm
4) Repairs. I go to the dealer for this. I don’t want to go to an independent, they may not have seen my exact problem before, and they may not have the right parts to fix it. For instance, my Jeep currently has no air conditioning. Could be several things that are simple to fix, a bad compressor, or low refrigerant, or it could be more serious. The HVAC system is a known problem with the 2011 Jeep GC, so I bet that if I bring it to the dealer, they will know exactly how to fix it, and it will be done quickly. I will pay extra for that assurance.

If I could find a great independent mechanic who specializes in Jeeps, I might consider them, but at this point, I’ll probably just stick with the dealer. Sure they try to upsell you on unnecessary stuff (fluid flushes, filter changes), but I remain strong and tell them No, and they have generally done a good job for me. Also the sales manager always calls me after the service to try to sell me a new car and buy my Jeep, but I brush this off as well.
Most people who use independent mechanics use ones that specialize (i.e. Japanese, domestics, Europeans, or exotics). For Jeeps I would find an independent that specializes in Dodge/Jeep, or Dodge/Chrysler, since the Grand Cherokee is the same platform as the Dodge Durango. Most independent mechanics started out at dealerships before striking off on their own. The have dealer parts and services on speed dial and are usually on a first name basis with the staff there.

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jharkin
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jharkin » Mon Oct 22, 2018 6:53 am

weltschmerz wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:34 pm
jharkin wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm
How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.
To many people, the price of the fluids (and the time to change them) is not the issue, since there is no way they are going to crawl under the car, perform the service, then deal with disposal of the old fluids.
Agreed, but that was not Oscar's contention.. His specific point was that "somebody capable of doing the work would spend $100". Which is not true.

And you cant make the argument on value of time either as a Civic is one of the easiest cars to work on. Ive done a radiator flush on one - it literally takes 10 minutes and no tools. There is a half turn plastic spigot on the bottom of the radiator - you put a shallow pan under the car, open that, wait 5 minutes for the fluid to drain, close the spigot and fill it up from the top until its full.

To do it perfectly you would then run the car until its warmed up and then let it cool off and check the level a second time.. but really that's all there is to it. So if a shop charges more than $15 for the fluid plus 30 minutes of labor something is wrong...

TheOscarGuy
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Re: Car servicing

Post by TheOscarGuy » Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:28 am

jharkin wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm

How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.
You assumed that OP did the work himself. He has made it clear since his/her original post that its the dealership that did the work. Unless you are proposing dealership charges just for parts and not for labor, your original post does not make sense to me.

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jharkin
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Re: Car servicing

Post by jharkin » Mon Oct 22, 2018 6:26 pm

TheOscarGuy wrote:
Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:28 am
jharkin wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:14 pm

How could you possibly spend $100 to change the antifreeze and ATF on a civic?? A gallon of Honda type 2 coolant is about $15. Maybe $20 at a full price dealer. Honda DW1 atf is a about $8/qt and the civic takes about 3 quarts on a change. I’ve done those jobs, takes less than an hour.
You assumed that OP did the work himself. He has made it clear since his/her original post that its the dealership that did the work. Unless you are proposing dealership charges just for parts and not for labor, your original post does not make sense to me.

I’m not sure how much clearer I could have stated it, I was responding to your contention that it would cost that much even to DIY.

We all know the dealer is a rip-off. The point I and others have made is that the work could be done much cheaper at an independent shop even if you don’t diy. Idisagree that the averaged annualized maint cost should be hundreds even using an Indy shop. It’s a CIVIC! Driven the typical 12k miles, most years it will need nothing but 1-2 oil change ( the interval is 7500 or 10k I believe). The transmission and radiator fluid would come up around year 7 or 8 ( I think it’s 90k, then every 60) Spark plugs at year 9 (105k) Thay haven’t had timing belts since 2005. Really just not much to do.

I also find it funny people are talking about diffs and VTM4... The civic is a FWD transaxle. There is NO separate diff that needs maintenance. VTM4 is for older model Pilots and CRVs.
And the poster above that said no trans filter changes is correct. Honda’s use a very different design of automatic than most other cars do. It’s not planetary gear based and has no band clutches, it actually works more like an automated manual. Unlike American cars you don’t remove the bottom pan to drain it and you don’t fill through the dipstick, it has drain and fill plugs just like a manual trans. And the filter is deep inside and very difficult to change short of doing a full overhaul.

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