1998 SE getting fleeced from mechanic - Page 4 - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 02-02-2006, 10:42 PM   #31
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For my 2 cents I would argee with bill Start asking question'* 4000 is to much money. I would start look way'* to leave their with out paying penny. For 4000 you could just get another car.
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Old 02-03-2006, 02:19 AM   #32
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I always hate to go this route, but it'* worth mentioning:
If they want to charge you too much money for their teardown in the event you want to take your car, engine, and business elsewhere (Which I recommend), I'd seriously keep open the option of small claims court. Your shop sounds like they're either (1) Seriously out to screw you, (2) Seriously incompetent or possibly just utterly unfamiliar with the 3800 Series II engine, or (3) Both. In either event, I recommend you get a couple quotes from competing shops what they would charge you to have done the same work; i.e., Diagnose your non-start problem and give you a repair estimate. If you know this amount BEFORE you take your car away from the shop where it is, you'll have a good case for countering any price-gouging they may do to release your car. And if they do gouge you to take your car away, you can go straight to small claims court to fight for the difference.
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Old 02-03-2006, 10:24 AM   #33
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Are there any shops in your area with good word of mouth? As in a series of people have spoken good about them? You may want to have a chat with them and see what they have to say as well as what they would charge?

Have you spent any money thus far on having the car fixed?

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Old 02-03-2006, 05:16 PM   #34
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ok guys, sorry it took me a day or so to get back with you. (work)

I went in and looked at the parts and talked to the actual mechanics that did the break down. They brought up that there was a lot of water and I asked about it being Hydrolocked rather and seized. The head mechanic and owner of the shop just about spit his coffee out of his nose. He said that there was a little bit of water/coolant and not enough to cause it to hydrolock.

I talked to the mechanic a good bit longer and he showed me all the parts that they are saying is needing to be replaced.

Worn Rods- There is some validity to this from the few that I was shown... not all of them just a couple have defined grooves on the end.

Injectors- I saw nothing wrong here but hard to tell just by looking at them

Heads- I looked them over and saw a crack between 2 of the chambers on one and nothing on the other.

UIM- There was a noticable hole but nothing too large. (we knew this was going to need to be replaced)

Water pump- *shrugs* they talked about build up of residue at one of the weep holes pointing towards its possible failure

But over all after going in with the knowledge gleened here I ended up getting them to see that they missdiagnosed the 'seize' and he began totalk about how the UIM failure created all the 'collateral' damage that we saw. But that if they had stopped at noticing the UIM failure that the rest wouldn't have been taken apart. They aren't going to charge for the labor of the tear down or rebuild other than what would normally cost me to do the UIM.

As it would seem that I do need to replace a few rods, 1 head, intake manifold and a few minor other parts it'* going to get it close to the original quote.

I won't be going back to that place and most assuredly going to be given the BBB a call and filling a complaint.
Thanks again guys.
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Old 02-03-2006, 07:16 PM   #35
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Find a low milage engine from the wrecker, have the upper intake replaced with the lower gaskets and Coolant Bypass Elbow and then have another place do the work...

What do they mean by Grooves? In a bearing maybe... But the bearing would have had to spun to create a groove in a rod... Rods are some really tuff stuff...

Keep us informed...

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Old 02-03-2006, 07:20 PM   #36
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If you can find another place to do the work, get another motor and have them do the install... That will save you from spending $$$$ on a torn down engine...

After the years I have been here on this club, I still can't believe how many bad shops there are...

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Old 02-03-2006, 09:43 PM   #37
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I think he means grooves in the end of a pushrod, not grooves in a piston rod. (Can we get confirmation here?)

I'm a lot more happy with your current diagnosis.
From what you've said, it looks like you need:
(1) A complete upper and lower intake manifold replacement & gasketing job.
(2) Maybe a couple of new pushrods.
(3) A cylinder head.
(4) Water pump. (Not a bad idea if you're doing all this other work.)

Now to give you some information to work with:
* I just had my Pontiac Dealer do the Upper and Lower intake manifold job,
(replacing BOTH upper and lower with new, and of course new gaskets), for $1600 out the door.
Yes, I know some of the guys on the forum here would say I got raped,
but I didn't have the time to do it myself, and I needed it done and I trust my dealer.

I think you said your original estimate was in the $1900 ballpark.
If they will replace BOTH your intake manifolds and put on a head from a wrecker, and replace your waterpump, you're back in the right ballpark.

At this point I think you called their bluff, and they blinked.
If you trust them to fix it properly, get it done, but ever after, take your business elsewhere!
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Old 02-05-2006, 09:04 PM   #38
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Exactly what Bugsi said, after looking around I got the price down a little bit more with supplying my own head and such, they didn't like that part but after I caught them in the bluff they really didn't have anything to say about it.

As for their work. It'* covered by a 3 yr 36k mile warrenty that covers labor and parts since they still did a complete break down of my motor. I verified that they are still going to cover everything. They said yes and even got it in writing.

So over all it looks like I'm going to get the better end of the deal in this but still won't be going back to that place. I'm actually going to start looking around here and see if I can find a good shop in case I need one in the future. (I like in an Apt and cant even check the oil without someone asking what I am doing with the hood up.) Or I'd do it myself. (hehe scary thought isn't )

Anyone in the Houston Area know of a couple good places on the South side?
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Old 02-05-2006, 09:17 PM   #39
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Well I'm gald you found us and were able to call their bluff, Serves them right... Maybe they will be a bit more careful about pulling a fast one in the future...

Again glad the the info has helped you to a certain degree..

And there are a few good shops out there...

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