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Daughter calls me yesterday back in Milwaukee, got an oil change and said her drive belt is bad. What, I just replaced that about 30K miles ago, was only 12 bucks and on that Cavalier, super easy. PS pump is driven off the camshaft, water pump off the timing chain. Only leaves the alternator and the compressor, was less than a five minute job! Last belt lasted over 100K miles.

So she tells the guys this, they cut the price down to 69 bucks, still way overpriced, but claimed she needed one. How do I know, I can't see it.

Just wonder how people can even afford to drive a car at these rates.

Then later my son calls me, someone ran into his brand new Honda, asked him what the damage is, only to the right front fender. Want 3000 bucks to repair it, because the have to paint it.

Said the same thing happened to our new Cruze, and I insisted on a brand new fender, was hit by a deer, and quote came to 999 bucks. Was covered by our comprehensive with a hundred buck deductible but my wife was on company business so they paid for this. Checked over all their work to make darn sure the under fender was properly undercoated, they did a good job. But since his car was in a parking lot, has to use his collision insurance, also carrying 250 deductible.

Then he tells me when driving over to his Honda dealer his engine starts to overheat. Nothing to do with the so-called accident, his Made in China water pump gave out. But this was covered under warranty.

Ha, just commented, not only the Cruze has water pump problems. Have another son living in Japan, tells they are also having massive layoffs and going to different places to get their crap made. Wonder if they are saving a couple of bucks on a water pump, but costing them a small fortune with warranty work. Ha, we are not the only country that is ran by idiots thinking they are saving money.
 

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Nick sorry to hear it but that pretty much sums up life in general. Everyone is out to lie, cheat and steal as much as possible. Our politicians are a great example of this.
 

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Oh the other son calls me, took his family and in-laws out for a ride, said ran perfect, but a couple hours later the engine killed and was far from the dock. Called me to contact some marina near by for a tow, but then some nice people came by and towed him to the dock.

Tried to get a handle on this problem, this thing compared to today is so simple, did you pull the center wire out of the distributor hold it near the block to see if you were getting a spark? He is afraid to do this, or maybe he flooded it, was born during the fuel injector area.

Anyway, I am headed out to his home to learn the problem, bet it takes me two minutes and get to see my grandkids. But will make sure he is with me to learn what the problem is.

Up here, marinas and RV dealers charge 125 bucks an hour, and they don't work very fast and not the most knowledgeable people in the world. So can reason why, the resell prices on these things is so low.

Ha, had to change the constant velocity joints and bearing, found US equivalents, never was greased from the factory. Cost me around 45 bucks for all Made in the US parts and was a four hour job. Others with the same exact problem paid 2,000 bucks for this same job. Is well greased now.

Then I caught my Chevy dealer charging me for, but not changing the oil filter, talk about crooks. How about taking an SUV for a wheel alignment after just replacing all four ball joints. Then being told you need four new ball joints with a 900 buck quote. Guy refused to give me the quote, tore it up, or would have landed up in jail.
 

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Back in the 60s-70s here, a few dealers/garages for a tune up would sand blast the plugs and clean the cap+rotor but charge you for new plugs, cap + rotor ect. How many people would actually check these things after a tune up. Or give you an oil change but not a new filter but charge for one.
 

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I did'nt read this rag but anyways ,, Hay Nick did ya ever watch the BLUES Brothers ? well there is a seen where John and Dan Push that Mobile into a Gas staion and ahh Dan swipes a bunch of ahh Drivebelts and then charges $90.00 for a tankfull of Gasoline to a Gorgeous Female ahh

Whom was that Female ?
And what was she driving ?
 

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Daughter calls me yesterday back in Milwaukee, got an oil change and said her drive belt is bad. What, I just replaced that about 30K miles ago, was only 12 bucks and on that Cavalier, super easy. PS pump is driven off the camshaft, water pump off the timing chain. Only leaves the alternator and the compressor, was less than a five minute job! Last belt lasted over 100K miles.

So she tells the guys this, they cut the price down to 69 bucks, still way overpriced, but claimed she needed one. How do I know, I can't see it.
I laughed when I seen the serpentine belt on my cavalier, don't think I ever seen a modern car with a 1.5ft belt. Looks more like it belongs on a riding lawn mower. Your correct, paid about $12 for mine, much better than the almost $40 for the large one on my Buick.

Cruze belt unfortunately is a bit harder to change, motor mount sits squarely in the center of the belt so it needs to be removed and motor supported.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Sons comment about his step sister, is he read auto shops like to screw young women, but not literally. And yes they scared the hail out of her, that's why she called me.

Water pump on that Cavalier is driven by the timing chain, if that breaks, don't have to worry about overheating your engine, it won't run. Won't die without AC, and with an 80 minute reserve capacity, could drive someplace. Also won't lose power steering in that car with a broken belt, only thing is the alternator, and that can be conserved by switching everything you don't need like the radio and blower motor, not the time to switch on your rear window defrost.

Was disappointed on the Cruze they put that water pump back on the belt, here we go again. Can only drive the thing a couple of minutes, sure have to worry about cracking your aluminum head, plastic cam cover and intake manifold.
 

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Was disappointed on the Cruze they put that water pump back on the belt, here we go again. Can only drive the thing a couple of minutes, sure have to worry about cracking your aluminum head, plastic cam cover and intake manifold.
I also liked the 2.2Ecotec family design of the waterpump, but it also created an overly complicated timing chain & balance shaft chain that also was known to have some issues. When I traded it had the dreaded diesel knocking sound on cold start, a sure sign of the timing chain tensioner becoming weak.
 

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Ha, son just calls, should charge a consulting fee, his AC quit working. First question is your fan going into high speed, no, his your outside unit turning on, no. Sounds like your thermostat is shot. Pull the cover off, get a short wire, paper clip, whatever and short out the red and yellow wires.

Will I get a shock? Not with 24 volts, his AC kicked on, your thermostat is shot, made in China and uses a cheap reed type relay for cooling contacts. He is now running out to by a new one, but had to comment, the old fashion Honeywell heating cooling thermostats, used a mercury switch that lasted forever. Now lucky today for these pieces of crap to last a couple of years.

So much for laws and made in China, told him this time, kill the power switch on his furnace or will mess up his control board, has to pull that backing plate off where the wires can short out. Ha, also have to pull the thermostat when painting the wall, they change the designs of these things every five minutes. Bet if he called a heating contractor to do this, would run him 3-400 bucks, for a 16 buck thermostat. Should have a spare.
 

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I knew you would get around to stealing some time ..Dang thieves have all of the fun hah..we call em Mechanics !
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Recall walking into a shop where a customer was screaming his head off for a 20 hour bill for a major electrical problem. Owner was honest to say the problem was in the starter connector and was hard to find.

Really stupid, run the positive battery cable down to the starter for the 12V take off for the rest of the vehicle. Way down in the bottom exposed to road salt. P-30 was this way, batteries were mounted high on the left side, starter way down to the rear on the right side, Running a 10 AWG all the way back to the body connector only 12" away from the battery.

Twisted that 4 and 10 gauge wire together, stuck it in a 2" piece of copper tubing, flatten the end, drilled a hole in it, even rounded the edge on my grinder to make it look professional and stuck it in my soldering pot. Then I had about a ten foot length of 10 gauge wire left over I could use elsewhere.

Both one of my daughters was sharing a room in college and both driving Honda's. Both had dead batteries, and her parents and I went down to help them. Just removed the old battery, took it back to K-Mart at the time and exchanged it for a brand new battery, zero cost. Offered to do the same thing for her roommate, but her parents insisted on taking it to a Honda dealer. They told them her drive belt was bad, should replace the alternator and the water pump and hit them with a 1,500 buck bill. Guess they wished they accepted my offer in the first place.

Back in the 80's, Honda water pumps were bullet proof, that Nippon Denso alternator just needed new brushes that was all but a five minute job.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Now daughter is having engine overheating problems after this belt replacement, but thinks this has nothing to do with it. How do I know talking to a person that doesn't know the first thing about cars?

For all I know the punctured a hole in one of her hoses, or worse yet in her radiator, but she is starting to learn all about a recovery tank.

Kids? If you think you have problems when they are two years old, wait until they grow up.
 
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