: More Car Repairs



CaddyChillin77777
11-29-09, 03:27 PM
Hey, on my '78 LeCab, my car has been having some problems. The battery kept dying on me, and I deducted that it was the alternator which I swapped out and now the car starts up. However, I still have a cracked engine manifold gasket, am in need of a new catalytic converter, and need tire alignment for my front wheels. The mechanic has given me an estimate of $2,500. Is this reasonable? How much should each component that needs repair cost? Would it be possible for me to fix any of this myself? My past history involves replacing my starter and alternator, but nothing too complicated.

Thanks,

Lee

csbuckn
11-29-09, 03:45 PM
Way too much, even if the exhaust is rusted. I would take it to another place. Was that at the dealership? You could probably replace the cat converter yourself.

Stingroo
11-29-09, 03:55 PM
That's WAY overpriced. I would take it to another shop, and never, EVER return to that first one. lol

CaddyChillin77777
11-29-09, 03:56 PM
The exhaust is intact. I'm not even sure if the catalytic converter is bad. You can definitely see some wear on it, and the outer layer has sortof peeled off of the rest, but I did pass emissions earlier this year. As far as the engine manifold goes, how detrimental is it to the engine to drive it while this leak is present? They were saying it would risk the engine dying at any moment. How much should this cost?

csbuckn
11-29-09, 04:29 PM
nothing terrible should happen to your car if you run it with a cracked manifold. It may get a little hotter under the hood and be noisy but you'll live. The cat converter, I believe, has a heat shield all the way around it that is probably rusting off but if your still passing emissions, its probably still doing its job. 2 to 500 for the exhaust manifold(my estimate) but it depends on how rusty it is, if bolts start breaking then the price can go up fast. I would take it to an exhaust shop.

CaddyChillin77777
11-29-09, 07:07 PM
Ok, thanks a lot. Now that brings me to another question - does anybody know a reliable mechanic in the DC area? Also, should I change my catalytic converter because of the heat shield corrosion?

Warren_R
11-29-09, 08:16 PM
Have you tired www.yelp.com? I'm not saying it's infallible, but does offer actual feedback re all sorts of businesses & can be searched by area :)
IMHO, worth a try at least!

CLASS OF 77
11-29-09, 10:33 PM
Hey, on my '78 LeCab, my car has been having some problems. The battery kept dying on me, and I deducted that it was the alternator which I swapped out and now the car starts up. However, I still have a cracked engine manifold gasket, am in need of a new catalytic converter, and need tire alignment for my front wheels. The mechanic has given me an estimate of $2,500. Is this reasonable? How much should each component that needs repair cost? Would it be possible for me to fix any of this myself? My past history involves replacing my starter and alternator, but nothing too complicated.

Thanks,

Lee

Shop around, I just replaced the left side exhaust manifold on my 77 CDV, it was a task, but I got it done.

You must realize there is a chance the manifold bolts may break off in the head! I had three break and went through hell! I have talked to other people and they told me these CADDYS are known for snapping. So, make sure you take it to a reputable shop and stay away from those backyard mechanics. sSee if you can find new exhaust manifolds there is a place here in CALIFORNIA that sells them new I will see if I can find the contact. GOOD LUCK!

1980coupe
11-30-09, 01:15 AM
The exhaust is intact. I'm not even sure if the catalytic converter is bad. You can definitely see some wear on it, and the outer layer has sortof peeled off of the rest, but I did pass emissions earlier this year. As far as the engine manifold goes, how detrimental is it to the engine to drive it while this leak is present? They were saying it would risk the engine dying at any moment. How much should this cost?

your car is 31 years old and it still goes through emissions??? As soon as mine turned 25 years it is not required anymore; the only thing they do now is safety inspections. When it hit 25 I had a muffler shop remove everything; muffler, catalytic converter, y pipe and replaced it with straight dual exhaust with glasspacks. Has a nice rumble when idling not to exagerated but nice sound to it.
I guess up where you're at emissions are different and probably vary state to state. Call and ask them up to what year do they stop doing it on old cars and see what they say....maybe it don't need it anymore.

drmenard
11-30-09, 07:20 PM
I'm here in Massachusetts... AS of last october only cars with OBD II have to pass emissions... that is 95 and below don't have to pass...

CaddyChillin77777
12-01-09, 01:27 PM
Do I need to get historic plates or something? It's a pain in the ass always driving to the testing facilities. How much did it cost to have the exhaust system replaced? And can anybody give me a reasonable estimate to how much it should cost for tire realignment and manifold replacement?

Thanks, Lee

csbuckn
12-01-09, 03:33 PM
the alignment at a chain shop is probably 79.99. The problem is what is causing the misalignment, theres probably a bad tie rod or something that needs fixin before they can do an alignment. With the prices these shops charge nowadays, that manifold is probably gonna be at least 200. I would suggest to start spraying the manifold bolts with WD40. I broke 2 myself.

1980coupe
12-02-09, 12:03 AM
Do I need to get historic plates or something? It's a pain in the ass always driving to the testing facilities. How much did it cost to have the exhaust system replaced? And can anybody give me a reasonable estimate to how much it should cost for tire realignment and manifold replacement?

Thanks, Lee

I do not have historic or antique plates on my car, however I do have old Texas plaets that were used in the 80's which at that time used a year and month sticker that were placed on opposite sides of the rear plate and the letters/numbers are in black and a plain white backround before they did scenery and blue numbers and letters. Here you can use year plates that represent your car, like if you drive a 62 Caddy and find a decent pair of 62 plates you can use them on your car. I like the old ones better with the year stamped to them.
The exhaust costed I believe $170-$180, I can not really recall since it was done 5 years ago. I do have the receipt in my box of receipts.:)
Tire alignment varies from shop to shop. Mine is free for as long as I own my Caddy. I paid a little extra like $150 but hey if you add up the times you go and each time you get charged it'll add up more than the cost I paid. So I purchased the lifetime alignment, front and rear brakes too.
Manifold, I would think will be a cost issue, only because of the labor. Maybe you can fix yourself??
:)

outsider
12-02-09, 10:13 AM
manifold's not hard to do if you can get to it. Just a few bolts.

Hard part is not breaking any bolts...and trying to get to the bolts on some models.

CaddyChillin77777
12-02-09, 01:02 PM
Well are the bolts easily accessible on the 425? Any kind of tips and secrets to not breaking the bolts would be much appreciated. Also, if one of the bolts did break, what then? Can you drill them out and simply replace them?

Lee

CaddyChillin77777
12-02-09, 01:03 PM
And thanks 1980coupe, I'll look for the older set of plates, if my dad kept them.

greencadillacmatt
12-02-09, 01:09 PM
I would hose down all the manifold bolts with PB Blaster. It is a penetrating oil, and it does a fantastic job. Spray the bolts once or twice a day for a few days. (PB can be found at just about any parts store.)

jayoldschool
12-02-09, 01:12 PM
You can get to all the manifold bolts. If you want LOTS of access, take off the inner fender! If you can, use an air impact gun. The bolts will come out easily.

CaddyChillin77777
12-02-09, 02:18 PM
Awesome, thanks for the advice, and the prompt responses. As soon as I finish my organic chemistry exam tomorrow, I'll go to the store and get the PB blaster and air gun. Ahh I miss the days when my car sounded like a car and not a tractor...

CaddyChillin77777
12-02-09, 04:43 PM
OK, so here's a recurring problem... My battery keeps dying and I don't know why. Even if I jump it it wont recharge. I know my belts are tight, and I just replaced the alternator. What could be draining my battery? When I changed the alternator, I didn't even have to jump the car, so I assumed everything was working properly, and that my other alternator had gone bad. Any ideas? The mechanic who gave me the bad estimate said that it could be the radio being wired directly to the battery. Could this be the problem?

Ok nevermind, it was something stupid. My battery port is stripped, so my positive terminal wasn't connected

outsider
12-03-09, 10:15 AM
^hehe, I was ganna say to check your connections, check the battery to make sure it's still good, maybe put a slow charge on it over night, and make sure you're running it long enough for the battery to recharge from the alternator.