Single Status Update
My car is screwed up. It has an overheating issue but it doesn't show it as an issue. The radiator fan wont turn on unless my AC or heater is on. No check engine light or anything. After a long diagnosis at a dealership, they've concluded that the computer in the car itself is failing and needs to be replaced. Never had that happen to a car before. Its a hefty bill to get that swapped out. I could go cheap and buy a used part off ebay for $30-100 but I don't see the point when theres no way to test the damn things accurately considering mine is reading as functioning normally. wtf. Instead of trading in the car, I'll foot the $1k bill next week when the get the part in. I really don't want another car payment at this point.
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Good luck with your car Strider. I used to do all my own car maintenance, but this toyota has been so damn good the last 7 years I've only had to get the front brakes done once.
Normally I'd agree that the dealerships are rip offs, most of the time they are. But this toyota dealership I go to has been very reliable. The only thing that really seems marked up is the labor. I used to do all my own brake jobs, I'd buy high quality pads for $30+ and rotors for $30 a piece. So for about $100 I'd do my own front brakes, but I'd have to do them at least once every 2 1/2 years because of the amount of driving I was doing at the time. But after putting on a crap load of miles on my corolla and having the front brakes last roughly 4 years, I decided to pay the extra cash for the OEM brake pads and rotors since they last twice as long as the aftermarket ones. The price for those in parts was a bit over double, $230. I was having some health issues and since it was winter (I have no garage), I had the dealership do the work. Ended up charging me $160 in labor. $500 for a brake job seems pretty steep to me compared to getting it done somewhere else for $200, but the parts are double the life span (at least they are for toyota, never seemed to be the case with any GM vehicle I ever owned). This ECU unit is going to cost me $600 for the part. I could save $500 buying a used one, but I'm hesitant because it could have some issue as well. But for the full $1k they quoted me, that also includes replacing the thermostat ($75 part). Roughly $325 in labor total for both parts. I could probably get the bill knocked down to $500 going to another mechanic and getting a used ECU, but I'm also planning on making multiple 18 hour round trips to ohio over the next couple years. x_x If I was just driving around locally I'd probably go with the cheaper option, but it feels like I'd be better off with the more expensive route for the peace of mind.
After getting screwed around with for the last 2 weeks with the dealership not getting the part in, my car has finally been fixed. They did have to replace the ECU and the thermostat. I need to do some more test driving to make sure the car truely isn't overheating anymore. So far so good tho. The car is running smoother, quieter and idles better at least. I called up a couple places to get quotes last week. 2 places wouldn't do the ECU and told me I'd have to go to the dealership but Firestone would. They quoted me $860 before tax for the entire job. x_x Not much savings over the dealership. In the end it costed me $1100 with tax for the ECU, thermostat, oil change and labor at the dealership. I went with them in the end since it comes with a full 1 year parts and labor warranty. If I have anymore issues with these 2 parts they'll replace them again free of charge for the first year. They also gave me a free rental car for the last 3 days while they waited on the ECU to get delivered to them. This crap was costly as hell, but at least I wont have another car payment. I hope thats the end of my car issues for a while. *crosses fingers*
2 days after my last post about this issue my car's check engine light came back on. Long story short, I bitched to the dealership and my car has been there for the last week. Probably because of the cost of the repair work and the fact that they don't want negative reviews online I have had a free rental car for the last 8 days while they trouble shooted the problem with my car. Turns out they put the wrong thermostat in my car because for some reason there are 3 different versions for my vehicle type depending on where the car was manufactured or some crap. They apparently didn't get the right thermostat shipped to them even tho they re-ordered the same one they previously replaced 8 months ago. Then that thermostat also failed which caused them to realize the coolant temp sensor was also malfunctioning by being off by over 15 degrees. They then replaced the temp sensor and the thermostat again and now the car is running fine. I picked it up today. Finally. x_x They didn't charge me for the rental, or the temp sensor or the extra thermostats. They even gave me a $50 credit because the thermostat replacement should have been covered by their warranty to begin with. The ECU was failing and did need to be replaced since it wasn't sending the signal to the radiator fan to begin with either. After picking up my car and driving it home today, it feels like I'm driving a new car again. It idles alot smoother now at stop signs and while parked. Hopefully this is completely fixed now. *knocks on wood*
The guy at the dealership jokingly said if I end up having to call him back because of this issue again he'll quit his job. He also said the head mechanic never wants to see my car again if at all possible.