: Installation Costs?!?!?

02-06-06, 04:39 PM
I just had Brogan Cadillac install some new components in the front suspension: new lower left control arm, left front knuckle, left inner/outer tie rods. I provided all the parts and they installed it. The price came out to about 900 for the install and subsequent alignment. Now, am I crazy or is that through the roof for the work done? Tell me I'm not crazy.
Initially the quote was about 1300 with the parts. I said I would provide the parts, which I got for about 500. There is no doubt that they would have charged a lot more, probably around 700 or so. Regardless, even if I take the lower cost that I was able to get the parts for and subtract from the initial quote, the cost for labor would only be about 800 [1300-500] (600 with what they would have most likely charged for the parts [1300-700]). Somethings not right here. Anyone know how much an installation like this really costs? Thanks.
I also wanted the volume knob on the NAV replaced. They replaced the whole NAV. Wasn't the volume knob replaceable by itself, without removing the whole NAV?

Redline CTS-V
02-06-06, 04:50 PM
I'd say it's high... According to Alldata;

Knuckle - 2.1 Hours
Control Arm - 1.6 Hours
Tie Rod End (Inner & Outer) - 2.6 Hours

Alignment is usually around $100.00, so that means they are charging you about $127.00 per hour. That's not taking into account any overlap on those repairs, which there is...

02-06-06, 04:58 PM
Yeah, I figured 3-4 hours tops, with about 100 for alignment, which yields 200-266 an hour. Even at 5 hours is 160 an hour. Crazy. Anyway, I'm gonna see the actual invoice and see what comes of it. Thanks a lot.

02-06-06, 05:33 PM
Why did you change all that stuff (accident?)

02-07-06, 04:19 PM
<Deep Breath> Okay, here we go. I was coastin down a slope on Route 17 in neutral, preparing to exit the highway onto an offramp. Foot on the brakes, I ease into the pedal as I approach the exit. I get the shudder (vibrations had recently been emanating from the front end, coming through the steering column whenever I pressed the brakes at speeds above ~40 mph [it did not have to be hard braking, not even moderately hard]; I was also getting vibrations/shudder at speeds above 70-80; for these and various other issues, I was literally going to take the V in to the dealer that very morning - DAMN! - as it turns out, I would, indeed, make my trip to the dealer ... eventually).
Anyway, continuing on, as I settle deeper into the brakes, suddenly - BAM! - a sudden shudder, no, more like a violent vibration, violent enough to almost kick my foot back. At this point, I was already committed to taking the off ramp (unless I wanted to veer into the faster traffic that was sweeping by; I'll take my chances by myself, without involving anyone else). It wasn't the ABS - much more violent/agressive - I know what ABS feels like and it wasn't the Stability System (don't think it even went off, at least I didn't see it in the NAV; but at times like these, time goes oh so fast, but oh so slow; pretty weird).
Pressing on the brakes gives me no response and turning the steering wheel does nothing. I just plow. No brakes, no weight transfer, no turn-in, yields plowing. And that is just what I did. Scary, having no control. Intuition and normal everyday experience tells you that when you press the brakes and turn that is exactly what happens. When it doesn't, your heart drops heavily, deep into the pit of your stomach, and all you can do is hold on tight and hope for the best. I hit the curb, hop it, and that sickening feeling comes up from the underside of my belly, radiating outwards and consuming me in my worst fears (what is the damage? how bad is she hurt? Oh no, I want to cry. Mommy!). Alas, only afterwards does the Stability System go off, now that the V is pigeon-toed. I have to stop the engine and restart it to reset the Stability System, since it keeps on bringing the V to a complete stop (wish it had done that before - Durrh!).
I get out of the car to have a look, expecting the worst (bent, wobbly wheels, damaged front bumper and fascia, etc.). But hey, you don't look too bad. You'll be okay. Maybe just an alignment and some suspension components at most. Just pop on two of my other wheels and she'll be as good as new (cross fingers). I'm less than a mile away from the dealer so I crawl on over.
By this time the adrenaline has already seeped in and started to subside, making way for the after-tremors. I try to recount, as best I can, while trying to remain calm, what just happened. The guy manning the front computer, to whom I was just speaking, guides me to the service advisor and relates that my vehicle had hit a curb. Invariably, it seems that the damage due to hitting the curb will not be covered under warranty. But I'm still worried about my car. Will she be okay? Let's get her fixed. Come on stay focused. I want her back, healthy and as good as she was before. That's all that matters at this point. A couple hundred dollars, as opposed to a drawn out process (all the while my V sitting all alone, out of use, broken hearted and broken toed). I figure I'll take the smaller hit, rather than consuming my time (the larger hit for me) and time away from my V. 1 or 2 days for the parts and 1 day to put them in. 2 or 3 days, tops, right? Not bad. It could be as if it all never happened. Yeah. Make it all go away.
So, after they have a look see, I received an estimate of 2700. WHAT? Oh, okay. I see. The two wheels are 1400. I've got another set of wheels and a spare as well. I can throw on two new wheels and recondition the damaged ones, bringing the total down to 1300. I can get the parts for a couple hundred lower than the list price of 700 I would get from the dealer and a couple hundred remaining for the labor. Not bad. 500, 600 at most. 2, 3 days. Aright, let's get her done, chop, chop!
But, wohhh, there cowboy. Not so fast. As it turns out, one of the tie rods had been revised, and it was on national back order. The control arm also took longer than expected as well. It was 2 weeks before the parts came in. Anyhow, I finally got the car back and, Wow!, that's an awful lot of shake from just the curbed wheels. And there's also a prominent whirring noise as I get around 28-30 (assumed, err, hoped it was vibration noises due to the off-balance wheels) Well, off to get my other two wheels mounted and she'll be happy as a bun. Two new wheels on and vibration gone, but, what, whirring. Damn this. What the fack. She's still not happy. Still hurting.
I refuse to pay anymore out of my pocket. My pockets are sealed, at least to the Cadillac dealer. They already raped me with the 900 dollar invoice (which, itself, didn't add up). Damn it. I shouldn't be paying for this at all. Damn. DAmn. DaMn. DAMN!
Should have made sure it was all done under warranty. What was I thinking? Damn adrenaline; worrying about my V, must've mucked my head up. Or was it already mucked up? Doesn't matter, this is all mucked up.
I've taken that off-ramp at similar and higher speeds in not only the V, but in a Suburban. A SUBURBAN. A 3 ton SUV. I could enter that off ramp at 40-45 mph in the Suburban all day long. After the incident, I took my sister's '76 Rabbit, with it's crap @ss excuse for brakes, and no power steering (her pump is dead), and entered that off ramp at similar speeds with nary a whisper. What the funk?
I've also had Stability go haywire on me in the Suburban. Similar conditions, coastin down a hill on a local street, the Stabilitrack suddenly got possessed on me. Did that crazy taking over the vehicle ish and then went away. I was going straight, so nothing came of it and I went on my merry way. It did leave an indelible impression in my memory, but it was noted as nothing more than a quirk. Guess, it was a little more than that this time. But then again, I don't know if it was similar, what it was or why it was? Man, what the fack?
I asked that they check all of the sensors. I got some kind of run around about having to fix the car before they did that? What nonsense. I don't think they checked them even after the car was fixed. I gave them a list of things to look over and fix (the issues I was going to bring the car in for) and, judging by the invoice (list of warranty issues investigated), I don't think they checked half the things on there. Anyway, this is not meant to be a tirade on the dealer service. I still have to talk to them regarding my concerns and, hopefully, it'll all work out for the better.
I still love my V. That's all that matters. As long as she's attended to. You'll be okay. We'll take care of it. Back in tip top shape, in no time. Huh, no, now, wait a minute. That's what I was saying 2 weeks ago. Doh!

Oh, and sorry for the long post.

02-07-06, 05:04 PM
as I settle deeper into the brakes, suddenly - BAM! - a sudden shudder, no, more like a violent vibration, violent enough to almost kick my foot back.

I'm confused. What was the BAM and violant vibration? Sounds like something let go in the suspension or brake. Why are you paying for any of this?

02-07-06, 05:11 PM
why pay? sounds like she broke

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02-07-06, 05:14 PM
:hmm: Maybe I'm slow (been told that before), but if I'm reading your description of the incident correctly . . you:
1) were coasting in neutral preparing to exit - What's your reason for doing that?
2) You had a) brake failure and b) loss of steering and subsequently struck the curb due to loss of control.
3) Your examination afterwards reveals severe front wheel misalignment, but you fire it up and limp in to the dealership . . without brakes!

Or are you saying that after all this the brakes and steering now work??
And . . you are paying for all this out of pocket vs. having an accident report made, the car towed and a determination made as to whether there was a mechanical failure? I must be missing something here.:confused:

02-07-06, 07:10 PM
coastin down a slope on Route 17 in neutral
definitely a no-no :tisk: been there and done that and learned my lesson many years ago.

Texan V
02-07-06, 09:34 PM
What am I mising? What's wrong with coasting in neutral?

02-08-06, 01:27 AM
????????? I don't understand; if the car failed why would you buy the parts and pay 900 for labor, please explain.

02-08-06, 01:58 AM
What am I mising? What's wrong with coasting in neutral?

If the motor quits you lose power everything (brakes and steering).

That is why you don't "coast" and especially in a turn.

02-08-06, 09:11 AM
If the motor quits you lose power everything (brakes and steering).

That is why you don't "coast" and especially in a turn.

Does your motor quit when you put it neutral??? Mine doesn't.

02-08-06, 09:52 AM
It's an issue of control. You are driving a high performance sedan with a 6spd manual transmission. An element of that is keeping the engine connected to the driveline, thus using the engine's compression for braking/trailing throttle control and the ability to immediately re-apply power as needed in the properly selected gear.
Actually, the concept holds the same whether your driving a V or a '74 Pinto. And . . as heavymetals said . . you are S.O.L. if the engine decides to stall. No power steering and usually one application of the power-assisted brakes.

Texan V
02-08-06, 02:08 PM
How does the driveline being engaged stop the power steering and brakes from going out when the motor dies? :confused:

02-08-06, 02:41 PM
How does the driveline being engaged stop the power steering and brakes from going out when the motor dies? :confused:

With forward momentum of the car and the clutch engaged, the rear wheels will still spin the rotating assembly of the engine, thus spin the pulleys that give you power steering and brakes. It wouldn't be the same as if the engine were running but...some power assist would be better than none at all when you need it most.

02-08-06, 03:07 PM
engine much less likely to "stall" when it is connected to a rotating driveline in a moving car, and if it died in gear you would KNOW it.

Coasting in neutral is just not good driving practice; you are "giving up" engine braking power and ALL accelerating possibility (and therefore "control"). Why would you ever want to do that?

But driving style is beside the point here. The alleged failure described above has NOTHING to do with whether or not he was in neutral.

Seems to be that it should not require the CSI team to determine if a failure caused the crash or the crash caused the failure, and if the failure caused the crash then this seems to me to be a warranty item (again, no matter what gear he was in).


02-08-06, 03:39 PM
my head hurts...:banghead:

silver bullet
02-08-06, 05:27 PM
I don't know about the 'V' owners manual but in my 2004 CTS manual on page 4-25 under a caution warning it says,coasting in neutral is dangerous. as you found out. I also had auto tech tell me some time ago that the engine being at idle and the car going faster than it should , for the given rpm will sometimes fool the computer into doing weird things to compensate for it not a good idea in the modern cars. At least when your in gear you have a little bit of control, and brakeing.

02-08-06, 06:08 PM
my head hurts...:banghead:

That's only because the reality is sinking in that it will be another 30 (or 80?) years before a another football or baseball championship comes to New England.....

02-08-06, 06:30 PM
That's only because the reality is sinking in that it will be another 30 (or 80?) years before a another football or baseball championship comes to New England.....
:stirpot:The Red Sox will be back soon. As for the Patriots, they can rot in the AFC East basement for all I care.

02-08-06, 06:44 PM
What am I mising? What's wrong with coasting in neutral?
No control. Having the transmission engaged in gear provides decelleration as well as acceleration control. Engine power, appropriately applied, will positively ensure control of any driving situation. I read an article in a magazine recently, addressing this very issue most veheminently. I will try to fine the article.

02-08-06, 06:51 PM
we would have done that for 450 cdn