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  1. #1
    ACLerok
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    Default serious problems with my celica

    Ok, so basically I went to the dealership like always for my oil change. (I've been going there for the 2 years now I've had my celica.) But the other day I go in and the mechanic comes in to the waiting room and tells me I have some serious problems going on with my car. He gives me a list of stuff thats damaged and how much it'll be to fix it all. Heres the list:

    Need drive belts replaced
    Cooling system needs to be serviced
    Battery needs "service"
    Head gasket and distributor seal is leaking oil
    Power steering pump needs to be replaced
    Power steering rack needs replacement
    Both lower ball joints need to be replaced
    Right front coil spring needs to be replaced

    And the grand total they gave me for parts and labor is 2,187.35 plus tax.

    I want to know if this is worth the trouble of paying this hefty repair bill or should i just junk my celica. This is the first time in the 2 years I've had it that anything needs to be worked on. And now this repair bill is almost as much as I paid for it...I bought it for 3,000.00

    What should I do?

  2. #2

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    I would suggest getting a second, independant opinion. Dealers seem to be very good at making up stuff like this. After I bought my car, a local dealer here told me that I "needed" over $4000 in work. All of it was overpriced, and most of it was bogus. Even if it does need some stuff, it will be cheaper at an independant shop.

    If you let us know what kind of problems your car is experiencing, we can probably talk you through a lot of it yourself.

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  3. #3
    ACLerok
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hooligan
    If you let us know what kind of problems your car is experiencing, we can probably talk you through a lot of it yourself.

    Thats the weird part though, my car feels as normal as ever. I hadn't noticed a change in the way it's been driving. I did notice however my p/s fluid had to be refilled once a few weeks ago. So i'm pretty sure it's leaking somewhere.

  4. #4

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    alternator belt and distributor seals are EASY to replace.
    Whats so bad about the coil spring? Id look into that one cause its a potentionaly dangerous...
    Ball joint, I'd replace if bad...
    coolant flushing is also easy.

    don't change anything useless !

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    I had good time with this one
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    The new ride!!

    msn:
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  5. #5

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    yeah dealers are overpriced bastereds
    i miss my celica
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  6. #6
    Ultimo Miembro Fantástico Gigantesco Slider will become famous soon enough Slider will become famous soon enough Slider's Avatar

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    Yeah forget the stealerships. Ask around and find a honest/reputable mechanic if you can't do it yourself.

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  7. #7
    TRDmkII
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hooligan
    I would suggest getting a second, independant opinion. Dealers seem to be very good at making up stuff like this. After I bought my car, a local dealer here told me that I "needed" over $4000 in work. All of it was overpriced, and most of it was bogus.
    I would have to disagree with you...i kind of take offense to that....most dealers don't make shit up but most of it is needed(or at least thats how i do things), however its not all live and death...all of that sounds like logical stuff with a lot of miles...the powersteering pump and rack are leaking most likely, so by topping off the fluid you can get by.....

    take hot water and and a wirebrush and you can service your battery

    i'd replace the coil spring due to the face that it might be very rusted or broken...

    are you sure he didn't mean valve cover gasket leaking?...i've never really run across a 5sfe with a head gasket leak, usually i sell the vavle cover gasket and dist o ring together...because its easier to do the dist o ring if your remove the valve cover gasket...

    i wouldn't worry too much about it....if you would like take it for a second opinion but i'm sure they're not making it up....its all a matter of opinion...i might say something needs replaced, but jim bob at the corner garage might say o i can fix that....he does it for cheaper but it doesn't last as long...

  8. #8

    Default

    Wash your battery, check levels in battery, flush your system, change belts and put some Lucas rack n pinion restore in your power steering. The Lucas with help your seals and most likely stop any leaks in that area. Change ball joints, check/change coil, chank distro seal. Not to sure about the H-gask. It's not that dealers make a lot of stuff up, its just that they kill you on labor. Each object is priced as a single job. So even if they can do items at the same time the charge you for each job. IE to change PS Pump they have to remove belts anyway. So why is there a charge for labor on changing it? Do they put a new one on just to take it off to change the pump?
    Tommy

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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by TRDmkII
    I would have to disagree with you...i kind of take offense to that....most dealers don't make shit up but most of it is needed(or at least thats how i do things), however its not all live and death...all of that sounds like logical stuff with a lot of miles...the powersteering pump and rack are leaking most likely, so by topping off the fluid you can get by.....

    take hot water and and a wirebrush and you can service your battery

    i'd replace the coil spring due to the face that it might be very rusted or broken...

    are you sure he didn't mean valve cover gasket leaking?...i've never really run across a 5sfe with a head gasket leak, usually i sell the vavle cover gasket and dist o ring together...because its easier to do the dist o ring if your remove the valve cover gasket...

    i wouldn't worry too much about it....if you would like take it for a second opinion but i'm sure they're not making it up....its all a matter of opinion...i might say something needs replaced, but jim bob at the corner garage might say o i can fix that....he does it for cheaper but it doesn't last as long...
    I agree with you but I could buy 2 celicas for the price of that work.
    Jeff


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  10. #10

    Default Don't sell it!

    All cars need repairs so buying a new one will need new things. Some of those u can do yourself, some you don't have to replace (just watch the fluid levels), some can wait a while on etc. How much does the dealer charge for an oil change? and how much for the full system diagnostics? Oil changes shouldn't be over $30. (under $25 if it's not sysnthetic) When you get everything werked out, te parts you replaced will be good as new. 2 yrs on a 3k dollar car... it's about time something needed replacing.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by ACLerok
    Need drive belts replaced
    Cooling system needs to be serviced
    Battery needs "service"
    Head gasket and distributor seal is leaking oil
    Power steering pump needs to be replaced
    Power steering rack needs replacement
    Both lower ball joints need to be replaced
    Right front coil spring needs to be replaced
    I think I had almost the lists happened in my car. . .
    in my opinion . .
    for the leaking oil. . . I remembered that day. . . my radiator hose was broken because of the leaking oil from the head gasket and distributor seal. . .
    that was a shitty day. . . .huge amount of smoke came out under the hood. . .

    for the PowerSteering. . . pump and rack. . . I had replaced both with used parts by Toyota dealership. . .and yeah. . . u should feel that the powersteering is gone if there is leaking in the P/S. . . once u r turning. . . u can hear the "geeeeeeee" sounds from the wheel. . . that was what happened to me. . . .

    I understand how u feel rite now. . .
    coz I had been keeping replacing stuffs for the car too. . . that sucks if u dunno anything about cars. . .and u dun want to leave the car like that. . .
    that's why we are here on this fornum. . . .
    good luck!~

  12. #12
    Jigglypuff
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    Default

    Need drive belts replaced
    Easy to do yourself. $15 belt, and ,15 minutes of your time.

    Cooling system needs to be serviced
    Aka flush and fill. Maybe 30 mintues of time if you do things the prescribed way. I personally think it's a bit tedious since you have to flush the system several times.

    Battery needs "service"
    Hmm. Maybe he means cleaning the terminals? Some batteries require that the user refill it with water, but your car battery should maintenance free.

    Head gasket and distributor seal is leaking oil
    Head gasket? Maybe he meant valve cover. If it's the head gasket, you're in pretty big trouble. Otherwise, it's pretty easy to remedy. Gaskets will be about $20 for both of them. Replacing them will require removing like 8 bolts/screws.

    Power steering pump needs to be replaced
    Power steering rack needs replacement
    Both are probably leaking. Mine leak(ed?), but I didn't feel like replacing them was necessary. It's your call on this one.

    Both lower ball joints need to be replaced
    Right front coil spring needs to be replaced
    No idea on these. Suspension isn't one of my fortés.

    If you want a short tutuorial on tasks you feel like doing, say so and I (or someone else) will go into detail about it. Half the stuff up there is as easy as changing your own oil, and if you do it yourself you'll save serveral hours worth of labor charges.

  13. #13
    ACLerok
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    Default

    Thanks for the advice everybody. My celica is still sitting at home but I'm using my parents jeep up here at school.

    Need drive belts replaced
    Quote Originally Posted by Jigglypuff
    Easy to do yourself. $15 belt, and ,15 minutes of your time.
    Cooling system needs to be serviced
    Quote Originally Posted by Jigglypuff
    Aka flush and fill. Maybe 30 mintues of time if you do things the prescribed way. I personally think it's a bit tedious since you have to flush the system several times.

    If you want a short tutuorial on tasks you feel like doing, say so and I (or someone else) will go into detail about it. Half the stuff up there is as easy as changing your own oil, and if you do it yourself you'll save serveral hours worth of labor charges.
    I was wondering if someone could post some quick tutorials on how to do these things. I figured I could do these myself once I come back from school (took my last final yesterday .)I called the dealer and the guy I spoke with said I could get an aftermarket p/s pump and rack and they would be about half the price. Would they still be as good? But I made an appointment to get my spring and ball joints replaced. Also he said it is the head gasket and distributor seal that is leaking. Is this something I could do myself? If not, for them to do it it'll be $136 he said. But again, thanks for all the advice.

  14. #14

    Default

    lemme try to help more on this


    servicing a battery

    if the battery is still good u need this

    a brush to clean the terminals
    add water to cells if nessasary

    cooling system

    drain out coolant
    run sum flush though it, around 2.50 -5.00 a bottle
    run water though it
    get a gallon of coolant and a gallon of bottled water
    coolant est $6 bottle
    gallon jug of water $0.50 at walmart

    if u are going to replace the thermostat it is $9.99 from autozone

    belts......from autozone

    alt & a/c belt $13.99
    power steering $7.99


    Valve cover

    gasket with plug tube seals $17.29 from autozone

    dizzy seal...i know its less than $10 from dealer

    P/S pump

    Drain and fill with Lucas p/s fluid $5 EST
    go from there

    Rack...if you dont have a loose steering system , wamder or alot of play in your steering system its fine

    check the boots thogh on the tie rods

    Ball Joints

    $54.99 from autozone, you need 2

    Spring

    check them for cracks
    both springs should be replaced if one is bad, ill sell you 2 front stock ones cheap
    94 camry base 5speed, oil pump exploded
    87 yota truck, it runs, it's in beater phase but it's been mobile.
    85 celica gt-s @311k...22RTE will 2016 be the year Joe fixes the 3rd gen
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  15. #15

    Default

    Just wanted to let you guys know... have you ever noticed the Power Steering fluid cap actually says to use ATF?

    After my amatuer timing belt job, I refilled the power steering system with power steering fluid. 30,000 miles later I have a leaky high pressure hose. Coinsidence? Perhaps.


    Also... what are the chances the leaky PS system is simply a leak in the high pressure hose many of us have had that has just been around a while? Its darn near impossible to spot a leak back there. For me anyway.
    Last edited by Doc; 12-17-2004 at 03:19 AM.

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  16. #16
    ACLerok
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    Quote Originally Posted by 91stxman
    Spring
    check them for cracks
    both springs should be replaced if one is bad, ill sell you 2 front stock ones cheap
    How much would you want for the 2 springs?

  17. #17
    TRDmkII
    Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Tommy91GT
    It's not that dealers make a lot of stuff up, its just that they kill you on labor. Each object is priced as a single job. So even if they can do items at the same time the charge you for each job. IE to change PS Pump they have to remove belts anyway. So why is there a charge for labor on changing it? Do they put a new one on just to take it off to change the pump?
    wow, that'd be great if i got that...lol...i don't charge to put on accy belts when i do a t-belt, i wouldn't charge to do betls if i changed a ps pump...yes some stuff adds up...but for example on a 5sfe, 3.0 to change a t-belt. to change front seals is 5.0 hrs...and a water pump pays 5.0 hrs...but if you did a tbelt waterpump and front seals its 7.0 soo your saving like 6 hrs...by doing it at once....if have to change a ball joint and i'm doing a wheel bearing...i cut the time....a lot of times they will separate it out to show the entire cost if each item was done separately.....wow i just read what i wrote, man i'm really defending dealerships...i don't care..actually i think i'm defending myself...lol oh well...no biggie...when i do work on the side i do it for much less anyways...


    Quote Originally Posted by Doc
    Just wanted to let you guys know... have you ever noticed the Power Steering fluid cap actually says to use ATF?

    After my amatuer timing belt job, I refilled the power steering system with power steering fluid. 30,000 miles later I have a leaky high pressure hose. Coinsidence? Perhaps.


    Also... what are the chances the leaky PS system is simply a leak in the high pressure hose many of us have had that has just been around a while? Its darn near impossible to spot a lead back there. For me anyway.
    those hp hoses are suspect to leak, i've changed a few many times...pain in the ass...its almost easier to remove the whole pump to change it....it doesn't matter what you use p/s fluid or atf...toyota recommends dextron III atf but the cars come with regular ps fluid??? don't ask.
    Last edited by TRDmkII; 12-17-2004 at 02:53 AM.

  18. #18
    Jigglypuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACLerok
    Need drive belts replaced
    Look at the alternator, and note how it's mounted. Near the back of the unit. there's a 14mm bolt that holds the alternator to the engine block. Loosen it (don't take it off). Near the front of the unit is another bolt. Loosen it until you can take off the serpentine belt.

    For the P/S steering belt, you'll have to remove the passenger side, front tire. Once it's of, locate the P/S pump (follow the belt). The pump is mounted similiarly to the alternator. Look near the top of the pump and loosen the 14mm (?) bolt. Near the bottom should be another bolt. Loosen the two of them, and the pump should be able to pivot freely.

    Installation is the oppsite of removal. Make sure the belts are taught. They should be firm, but still have a little slack. Use your own judgement own how tight they should be. If you hear squealing when you start the car, you know it's too loose.

    Quote Originally Posted by ACLerok
    Cooling system needs to be serviced
    Jack the car up, secure it, and locate the drain plug for the radiator (it will be near the bottom, left hand side). Open the fill cap at the top, and drain the radiator into a bucket. When done fill it up with the proper mixture of antifreeze and water, and then turn the car on for 15 seconds. Continue flushing and filling until the drained fluid is a pure color.

    You're supposed to repeat the process since there's still fluid in the engine block. Repeating the process ensures that all the fluid is cycled out.

  19. #19
    Ultimo Miembro Fantástico Gigantesco Slider will become famous soon enough Slider will become famous soon enough Slider's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doc
    Just wanted to let you guys know... have you ever noticed the Power Steering fluid cap actually says to use ATF?
    ATF is thicker than regular PS fluid. Regular PS fluid may leak or cause leaks from what I remember.

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  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by TRDmkII
    wow, that'd be great if i got that...lol...i don't charge to put on accy belts when i do a t-belt, i wouldn't charge to do betls if i changed a ps pump...yes some stuff adds up...but for example on a 5sfe, 3.0 to change a t-belt. to change front seals is 5.0 hrs...and a water pump pays 5.0 hrs...but if you did a tbelt waterpump and front seals its 7.0 soo your saving like 6 hrs...by doing it at once....if have to change a ball joint and i'm doing a wheel bearing...i cut the time....a lot of times they will separate it out to show the entire cost if each item was done separately.....wow i just read what i wrote, man i'm really defending dealerships...i don't care..actually i think i'm defending myself...lol oh well...no biggie...when i do work on the side i do it for much less anyways...




    those hp hoses are suspect to leak, i've changed a few many times...pain in the ass...its almost easier to remove the whole pump to change it....it doesn't matter what you use p/s fluid or atf...toyota recommends dextron III atf but the cars come with regular ps fluid??? don't ask.

    When ever people do work on the side they usually charge a lot less and do the work is usually done fast. My point about deallers and some other mechanics is most things are gauged on a hours need. If it takes less they still charge you for the full hours. Nothing against that, they are doing what they do best, and a lot of people can't do or are afraid to do their own work (public in general). Example: Toyota charged a soldier in my unit for 5 hrs labor to replace both driveshafts on the front. I turned around and did mine the following weekend and was done in under 2 hrs. Now i'm good with my hands, and know my celica in and out, but there is no way I should be able to do work faster than a dealer who is suppose to be the "Subject Matter Expert". Now when I speak of of mechs, I speak in general, there are a lot of truthworthy mechs that know what they are doing and charge far prices, but there are just as many that overcharge and do shady work. Thats why I like to do all my own work. That way if it's messed up, I know who to blame. Plus I charge myself a lot less for labor.
    Tommy

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  21. #21

    Default

    A lot of mechanic shops charge by the book value of time it takes to do a repair on a car. So if they quote you 5 hours without any glitches it'll cost you 5 hours of labor. The mechanic will try and do it as quick as possible and say get it done in 3 hours. Now the mechanic gets paid for 5 hours and has done 3 hours worth of work and get onto the next car. This shows the mechanic is rushing which is why a lot of the time things aren't done properly.

    But then some other mechanic shops give bonuses to mechanics if they reduce complaints or do a better job than the customer expects. So if it takes them the full 5 hours they might get a bonus on top of that and still put out good quality work.

    It varies between shop to shop, this also applies for the autobody trade as well.

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  22. #22
    TRDmkII
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conrad_Turbo
    A lot of mechanic shops charge by the book value of time it takes to do a repair on a car. So if they quote you 5 hours without any glitches it'll cost you 5 hours of labor. The mechanic will try and do it as quick as possible and say get it done in 3 hours. Now the mechanic gets paid for 5 hours and has done 3 hours worth of work and get onto the next car. This shows the mechanic is rushing which is why a lot of the time things aren't done properly.

    But then some other mechanic shops give bonuses to mechanics if they reduce complaints or do a better job than the customer expects. So if it takes them the full 5 hours they might get a bonus on top of that and still put out good quality work.

    It varies between shop to shop, this also applies for the autobody trade as well.
    it does depend on the technician, personally i work fast...i don't rush, i'm just pretty good, once you've done something several hundred times it gets as easy as looking in the mirror

    my shop works flat rate, and i see some people struggle and try to rush. Not jinxing myself hopefully but i rarely have any comebacks...i'd say about 1-2 a month and they are minor things...or rattles that are near impossible to fix.

  23. #23

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    i would recommend getting a chiltons manual and go from there, i mean the belts are a sinch and the gaskets are as well. Know nothing about the rack a' pinion.
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  24. #24
    ACLerok
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    Well, it's been awhile. But I took it to another mechanic. It turned out the dealership was maybe exaggerating on what had to be done. He had a look at it and said I need a new p/s rack yes, but the pump was fine. And the belts need to be replaced but I'm also getting the timing belt and water pump replaced. It's only going to be about $1,200 for the repairs. While I was talking to him, he seems like he knows his stuff and will be pretty reliable. It's going in this morning and they said will take about 8 hours.

  25. #25

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    its good that you figured everything out besides the point if he really knows what hes talking about, i can tear everything down to the timing belt in no time.
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