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2000 DeVille
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Took my wife's 2000 Deville in for diagnostic because of rough running/MIL flashing/DTC P0300. Shop estimate for $900 to replace plugs, boots, and crankcase position sensor. Seems about double my estimate. Am I wrong?

edit: They quoted parts and labor for a Camshaft pos sensor, not Crankshaft... my bad.
 

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2001 Seville STS, 1990 Seville (RIP), 1972 Sedan Deville
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Depends on their hourly rate, how many hours they're estimating it will take, and how much they're marking up the parts. I personally wouldn't pay that.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

That's just simple math. How does this help? I was asking for someone with experience to comment on the likelihood this was an inflated estimate. Without input from the forum, I decided I was being jacked, so I picked up my car and paid for the diagnostic, which was about $115. When I looked at the breakdown it wasn't too bad, but could determine that the shop was trying to emulate a Cadillac dealership which I was trying to avoid.

Common sense would have told them you don't jack prices for repair on a 15 year old car like that and expect to get the business. The fact that he charged me $115 to run a 30 minute diagnostic confirmed I did not want him working for me.

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That's what I was thinking. From the written estimate he gave me, it appeared everything was double priced. $227.13 labor to change spark plugs.... that's $28 per plug.... LABOR.
 

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2010 DTS
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

I know a dealer will charge about $450 to swap out CKP sensors. Non dealer should be somewhat less.

Not sure what the going rate is for plugs, but the rear ignition cassette is a bit of a job to remove, so all things considered, that might be a little high, but probably not much considering the cost of labor. Best thing to do is call around and get a few more estimates. Then you'll know for sure.
 

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1973 Cadillac Hearse, 2002 Cadillac DHS
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

And labor is still labor whether the car is 15 years old or 15 minutes old.
 

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2002.5 F55 CORSA STS, 2014 Explorer XLT FWD
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

GM labor rates -

Change plugs and boots - 1.9 hours, parts pricing varies. Right (rear) bank is an absolute bitch to do.

CKPs - 1.5 hours, GM retail $200 for both.

So, for GM labor alone you're looking at 3.5 hours, about $350 right there. Quite a bit of stuff needs to be opened up, moved out of the way to do both jobs.
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

Common sense would have told them you don't jack prices for repair on a 15 year old car like that and expect to get the business.
Maybe he doesn't REALLY want to do it.
I've got several jobs in for service right now that unless I'm making VERY good money on I won't do,
other types of jobs I'm the least expensive in the country.
Every shop has jobs that they solicit, jobs they avoid all togather and jobs they do but only at a premium rate.
Just a thought.
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

Maybe he doesn't REALLY want to do it.
I've got several jobs in for service right now that unless I'm making VERY good money on I won't do,
other types of jobs I'm the least expensive in the country.
Every shop has jobs that they solicit, jobs they avoid all togather and jobs they do but only at a premium rate.
Just a thought.
Excellent point, however I think the shop just wanted to emulate a dealership's pricing. The reason I say this is because he had a laundry list of all the things he thought I should get done, I surmise he thought I would be a revenue source like my former Caddy dealer used to do to me. That's why I stopped going to the dealer and looked for an independent shop.

GM labor rates -

Change plugs and boots - 1.9 hours, parts pricing varies. Right (rear) bank is an absolute bitch to do.

CKPs - 1.5 hours, GM retail $200 for both.

So, for GM labor alone you're looking at 3.5 hours, about $350 right there. Quite a bit of stuff needs to be opened up, moved out of the way to do both jobs.
That's the info I was looking for. Thanks!!!

And labor is still labor whether the car is 15 years old or 15 minutes old.
This is another useless comment. Of course this is true. The issue is that someone with a 15 year old car is not going to spend the $$$ to make it like new, especially for a retiree.

I know a dealer will charge about $450 to swap out CKP sensors. Non dealer should be somewhat less.

Not sure what the going rate is for plugs, but the rear ignition cassette is a bit of a job to remove, so all things considered, that might be a little high, but probably not much considering the cost of labor. Best thing to do is call around and get a few more estimates. Then you'll know for sure.
Yes! Another very helpful comment, thank you very much. Your reply gives me confidence that I am proceeding in the right direction. The written estimate betrays the fact that the auto tech did not really quote me an accurate figure because he downplayed the spark plug boots as not being a significant factor in considering the cost. He did say the spark plugs had coil over plugs, but he did not discuss the replacement of the cassette(s). The estimate did not reveal his shop rate or estimate of time to do the work. I paid him and went down the street about a block and made an appointment there.

Thanks to all you guys with helpful input. I used to do my own work but I'm getting too old for it anymore (in my 70's). Besides, I go in for surgery next week and wanted to get this car fixed ASAP for my wife. I will be unable to even take the car in for repair for a couple of weeks post-surgery... so again, Thank you all very much.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

@Submariner409: Wow! This is the reply I was hoping for. My humble gratitude for your input.

Having said this, I guess I should tell you that I was in an Anti-Sub Hunter/Killer Task Group during my stint in the Navy back in the '60s. Were you in the Atlantic or Pacific?
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

Atlantic, out of New London and Charleston. During the 1960s time of Task Group ALFA I was in USS PIPER (SS409) and USS SKIPJACK (SSN585). We worked with them, NORTHAMPTON, and the P2-V squadrons out of Brunswick.
Mid 60s saw me shanghaied to ballistic missile boats.

EDIT: Durning a MEDEX in SKIPJACK we landed an underwater launched green flare ("torpedo away" exercise) on the flight deck of JOHN F KENNEDY. You guys never had a chance.
 

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Those prices are high especially for a non dealer. I always firgure 75 an hr for any repairs. 2 hrs for ckp and probably same maybe more for plugs. 350 to 400 labor plus parts not unreasonable.
As for someone not putting money into a 15 plus year old car just look around here and all us nuts... I have made way more money off older cars and people who have to have their cars running than ever have off newer cars.
 

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1991 Cadillac Brougham D'Elegance 5.7 Litre, 1994 DeVille
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

From the look of the replies in this thread the price might not be double what it should be but still sounds high. Did you try getting a price from the dealer? I try to avoid them but sometimes a good dealer will have decent prices for work like this because they've done the job enough times it is pretty straightforward to them and they can price it better. Not saying it is the case but you never know they might surprise you.
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

he downplayed the spark plug boots as not being a significant factor in considering the cost.
true, but the boots rarely NEED to be replaced.
He did say the spark plugs had coil over plugs, but he did not discuss the replacement of the cassette(s).
The cassettes house your coils. No need to add cassettes to the price of a tune up unless you have a misfire that plug replacement does not solve. New cassettes can be pricey.
 

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1996 Cadillac Deville
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

So, how much did it end up costing at the shop down the street?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

Atlantic, out of New London and Charleston. During the 1960s time of Task Group ALFA I was in USS PIPER (SS409) and USS SKIPJACK (SSN585). We worked with them, NORTHAMPTON, and the P2-V squadrons out of Brunswick.
Mid 60s saw me shanghaied to ballistic missile boats.

EDIT: Durning a MEDEX in SKIPJACK we landed an underwater launched green flare ("torpedo away" exercise) on the flight deck of JOHN F KENNEDY. You guys never had a chance.
Oh yeah? During one exercise with a boomer, the game started at 06:00 and at 06:01 I spotted a snorkel and called it in. The exercise was over. That evening at report, the Skipper said that "LTjg Eagle Eyes" scored a hit within one minute of the beginning of the exercise. (I didn't live that one down the remainer of the cruise... :) ) I felt sorry for the sub skipper who was caught with his pants down trying to get that last minute fix for a shot. I bet he didn't live that one down for the rest of the summer. I'll bet his ears were ringing for a week from the PDC.

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BTW.. I flew ASW off the Intrepid, Wasp, and Lake Champlain. I also went to Sub school for an orientation in Groton. While there, a nuke came into port and didn't quite negotiate the dockside approach and hit it dead on. It split the dock in two right down the middle. Boy, was I glad to be flying and not diving.

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Those prices are high especially for a non dealer. I always firgure 75 an hr for any repairs. 2 hrs for ckp and probably same maybe more for plugs. 350 to 400 labor plus parts not unreasonable.
As for someone not putting money into a 15 plus year old car just look around here and all us nuts... I have made way more money off older cars and people who have to have their cars running than ever have off newer cars.
That's because most people with a new car take it into the dealer under warranty. When I first got my Caddy, I took it to the dealer I bought it from. Too many times they did such a poor job that I switched to a franchise shop that I found with exceptionally skilled techs. Then the shop manager got replaced and things went downhill. Now I am looking for a good independent shop. This was my first attempt and I wasn't impressed with what they told me, not to mention quoting me $199.99 for a Camshaft Position Sensor (labor $69.13) which I knew was too much. They listed plugs and boots but did not list coil pack(s) which I knew was expensive, but not listed. I wasn't convinced they had much experience with N*s, the quoted work didn't seem to fit, and they were too eager to do a lot of work I didn't want. To top it off, the tech that did the DX told me that there was barely any oil on the dipstick. When I told him that I ran it until the DIC showed "Check oil level", then put in 2 qts. and had been doing that for years. He went on about how I was damaging the engine, etc. I realized he never read the GM comment on that technique, so I assumed he probably did not know much about Caddys. Mine was the only one on his lot.

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So, how much did it end up costing at the shop down the street?
Turns out they only take repairs in by appointment only. I had asked for an appointment via email earlier in the day, but they didn't get around to looking at it until I showed up several hours later. They did, however, set me up with an appointment early Monday morning. I am more prepared for this DX than the first thanks to you guys on the forum. In the meantime, I saw more than one post on the net indicating someone had a similar issue due to a loose vacuum line. I will make sure they investigate this and not rely completely on computer codes.

I know this is gonna cost some bucks. I just want it to be for the right reason and not for a waste of time and money.
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

The ONLY time a missile boat would snorkel was to do a reactor restart with a low battery - the snorkel brings air into the boat and passes out the exhaust gas for the single diesel-generator. No submarine would ever attempt to snorkel in close proximity to a fleet or shipping. #1 scope for a quick final bearing and shoot - maybe. But the fast attacks and missile boats never needed to "see" a target - it was (and is) all done with sound and bearing analysis. After the end of the diesel boat/Mk.14-3 steam torpedo era things got a LOT more "Run Silent, Run Deep". Even in the early 70s we could shoot a wireguided fish, steer it around 3 smaller targets and hit the biggie - from 8 miles away - without ever seeing any of the targets. There are also fish that go out 3,4,5,6 miles and then shut down and hover. When the group approaches, it starts up, picks out its assigned target, changes speed and depth, and - bang.

Heh, heh -------- NLON, the Thames River, tidal current, long piers and parking at the head of the pier. Back in the early 60's there was the old story of the skipper who brought a fleet snorkel diesel boat (bullnose bow) in a bit too hot, hit the wooden seawall liner, the bow rode up and creased the hood of his car.

Read the home page, learn the virtual tour instructions - enjoy. This is a sister ship to my first diesel boat.

http://www.maritime.org/tour/index.php
 

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2010 DTS
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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

When I told him that I ran it until the DIC showed "Check oil level", then put in 2 qts. and had been doing that for years. He went on about how I was damaging the engine
:histeric: I wonder how he would explain you "damaging your engine" with 5.5 qts of oil still in it. :bigroll:
 

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Re: Repair estimate quite high. Feedback requested.

some cars, its not really a question of if you can afford to buy, but can you afford to own
 
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