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Car repair help, please

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by imjustagirl, Aug 18, 2010.

  1. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Having just moved to a new city, and with all my friends/coworkers living out in the burbs and using mechanics out that way, when my car refused to start Monday night, I decided to just look around online.

    Found a place near me that got good reviews. Called the roadside assistance, had them tow it over there. Guy just called me. It's the starter (which I figured, when I noticed the battery tested out OK). They want $417 for it ($133 for labor, $284 for the part).

    Now, in looking online at NAPA and other places, I can get a starter for my car for about $170. And at this point, where I can't pick the car up until Friday because I literally don't have the money to get it fixed, saving $100 is saving $100.

    I've been told to a.) call and see if they have a remanufactured part (My car's a 2003, so it's not like I need brand new stuff) and b.) see if they'd install one from somewhere else. Problem THEN becomes how do I get to NAPA to buy the part and back over to this place since I DON'T HAVE A CAR?

    Any advice? Do they have me over the barrel and I'm just going to have to not pay any other bills this month to make this payment?

    (and yes, RickStain, I know I should have savings. Bite me. :D :D :D :D)
  2. Machine Head

    Machine Head Well-Known Member

    Call NAPA and see what the delivery charge would be to deliver it to the repair shop?
  3. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    PepBoys has it for $185, and they're checking how much it would cost to just do it there. Even with a $40 tow, I should still be ahead of the game.
  4. Lieslntx

    Lieslntx Active Member

    I know you haven't lived there too long, but have you met someone that will do the "I'll buy you a 12-pack of beer if you drive me so-and-so" thing?

    My other thought: is the repair shop going to be pissed that you bring them a part they could have sold you and they end up finding another problem, charging more for labor, etc. Maybe I'm worrying about something that I shouldn't be, but this part would concern me.

    However, my best piece of advice would be to ask them for a re-manufactured part first and see how much that saves you.
  5. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Well, they're closed for the night. So I'm basically preparing myself for what I need to spend my lunch hour tomorrow doing.

    I'll call them tomorrow when they open at 7 a.m. See what they have to offer. If not, at least I know other places might be able to help. Just a question now since the PepBoys is about 10 miles away and I know the place near me will come pick me up to go get my car from them.
  6. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    You need to get a AAA membership...

    Does your auto insurance have free towing?

    The current place might charge you an hour of labor for looking at the car. You might need to factor that in.


    2003 Altima? $417 seems high.
  7. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    2003 Impala.

    I get free towing from my Verizon roadside assistance, but I've already used two. Don't know how far they'll tow, either.

    Yeah, the place here will charge me $88 for diagnostics, so at $320 plus $20 for the tow (maybe) I'm still behind the game. Crap!

    From your site, 93D:
    RepairPrice EstimateTM

    Estimated price range for your repair
    $293 - $469 » What's a RepairPrice estimate?
    Estimate Includes:
    Labor: $86 - $109

    $207 - $360

    so...$133 for labor is high, but $284 for the part is right in there. Crap!
  8. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Active Member

    IJAG, usually the best mechanics tend to also have the best sources. In other words, they can usually find the right quality part at a price that isn't far above industry standard. The best mechanics will make their scratch in labor and find a way not to find the most expensive part and/or charge an outrageous markup in the process.

    Understanding that this doesn't necessarily give you a grand solution, I can only hope this is of some help.
  9. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    I thought I was the only one who started car trouble threads.
  10. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    No, your thread would have been:

    "My car has been making a terrible noise. It scratches and clangs. Also, every parent in town hates me. I run everything I can, even shit I shouldn't, but it's never enough. What do I do?"

  11. murphyc

    murphyc Well-Known Member

    My co-worker recently had to replace the ignition tumbler on his '05 Impala (same car as yours) and that was a pricey little thing. I think of Chevrolets being cheap to fix, but between the tumbler on that Impala, the starter on yours and the suspension repairs on our Malibu, maybe I'm living in the past.
    I second (or third, fourth, whatever number we're up to) the idea of looking for a remanufactured starter.
    Also, it might be worth finding an Impala forum. You never know, the starter might be a common problem and people have come up with a low cost solution.
  12. fishwrapper

    fishwrapper Active Member

    NAPA will deliver the part. Labor on a starter shouldn't be more than one hour on most cars.
    (I don't know if the starter is behind the block on the new(er) Impalas.) It appears they're charging you for two hours.
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