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Is this auto repair shop trying to rip me off?

Expose or warn others about scams and scammers, or shady business practices. Expose those that have cheated you or ripped you off. Caution: Before naming specific individuals or groups, make sure that they really wronged you and that there was no misunderstanding. Otherwise your post may constitute slander or libel if it contains false information.

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Postby Devil Dog » Mon May 05, 2014 12:09 am

Winston wrote:Devil Dog,
I just had the timing belt replaced. It took about 3 hours. Afterward, when they gave me the timing belt they replaced, it looked pristine, almost new. When I mentioned this, they said that there are stretch marks on it. I asked "Where?" He pointed to the bottom of it but I saw no stretch marks. It looked very sturdy and strong, almost as good as new.

Does that mean that the timing belt never really needed to be replaced? Why didn't they just open the part that covers it to examine it first?

They put a sticker about the replacement on the side of a part that contains it. Were they supposed to do that or put the sticker under the hood? How did they know that the timing belt wasn't changed?

It is best to have it replaced, no matter how it looks. It has been through many hours of stress and heating/cooling cycles. It may have problems which are not apparent to the naked eye. And as the previous poster mentioned, most of the money was already spent just by opening it up. It would not make economic sense to open it up and then not replace the belt and the water pump.
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Postby Winston » Wed May 07, 2014 5:50 pm

Here are photos of the timing belt that was taken out, that I took with my phone camera. Doesn't it look pristine?


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Postby momopi » Sun May 25, 2014 9:44 pm

Winston wrote:Devil Dog,
When I took the car in for a smog check certificate, the guy at the shop reminded me about the timing belt. He said that they could replace it for $400 total. That's half of what the other places wanted. What do you think? Should I get it replaced for that amount?

What is the year and make of the car, and where did you get the $800 quote at the "other places" ?

The cost replacing the timing belt and water pump on a Toyota Camry should be around $400-$500 at cheap independent shops, or twice that at a dealer.

Timing belt and water pump is usually only applicable to vehicles with internal combustion engine. Moving forward, electric vehicles do not have these, and the maintenance expense will probably go toward battery replacements ($2000-$3000+).
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