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02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 28 Sep 2009, 01:41 pm
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Default 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Hi all, My 02 went to the shop for routine timing belt/tensioner/water pump replacement, minor oil leak(looked like valve cover), $1400 estimate. Got a call from shop saying it needed a head gasket replaced too. 3 days later bill was $2400. Ouch. Floated a loan to pay it. Questioned time billing as they had everything apart anyway. After picking up, AC didn't work and was getting an engine light. Took it back in, said egr failed and re-charges ac system. Seemed okay. Drove about 3000 miles on trip and car electric fan came on everytime car idled, gas mileage was all over (19 then 25). Now alot of rattling in front of motor. Checked oil and was down a quart! Put oil in still rattling. Checked coolant was out reserve and down an inch in radiator. Pulled plugs (1 and 4) and plugs had not been changed (gap off gauge) and 1 had oil on shaft. Took back to shop said I thought timing was off. They looked at said no they checked with an onboard computer and everything was fine, discussed other issues was told to contact their attorney, lovely. Here's my questions. When doing timing belt wouldn't you just replace everything, idle rollers, etc, flush coolant system, change oil??
They told me they did niether, just replaced coolant and never changed or dropped the oil. They said that chryler put out a memo saying a car with over 50,000 miles it was normal to go through a quat every 1,000 miles? right? On head gasket they said head was fine and replaced bolts with new ones. Q? Wouldn't you have to pull plugs to actually check for milling? Wouldn't you change oil at least once? Wouldn't you replace 50,000 mile plugs? I got ripped? Coolant is not red as before but clear, but still red floating around in it, no oil in it. Oil looks okay, no coolant that I can tell, no oil or coolant leaking outside the motor. With gasket set aren't there all the gasket(head,etc) for everything including they valve cover orings for the spark plug tubes? I'm out of money and can't afford to have someone else look at it right now. Kinda scared to drive too much. Supposedly 2 year 24,000 mile warranty, but have now been told to contact attorney, nice. Pretty "want to be prestigous" shop. I'm an old school motorhead so these tight little motors etc are not for me, too many electronics. Don't know where to look or go for help. Sorry so long on thread.
zmaster
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Old 28 Sep 2009, 03:30 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Welcome to the forum.

To get right down to it, NO they (and most independent shops and dealers) won't change anything that wasn't agreed to beforehand. They will change oil if a major job they contained oil was involved. I had a small oil leak on the front seal and along with my timing belt they replaced the seal but did not change it. The head gasket you can buy by itself or in a kit. Sounds like they only bought the one or maybe 2 since the valve cover came off. Their not going to replace the plugs or wires unless you told them to. If you had made an agreement to check other things and call you for an approval before doing anything else then they might have. But if they did oil, plugs etc. and threw in an extra $100 when you came and picked it up, you be pissed also.

It does sound like they didn't use the right antifreeze as it should be red or green depending on what they used. Buy yourself one of those gadgets for about $3 that measures what the antifreeze will protect your coolant down to. Should keep it from freezing to about -20 degrees.

As as them telling you to see their lawyer, doesn't sound like a reputable shop to me.
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Last edited by CREWZIN; 28 Sep 2009 at 05:47 pm.
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Old 28 Sep 2009, 04:00 pm
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Location: San Antonio, Texas
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

They should have replaced the oil. In my opinion anytime you expose the oil to coolant or any abrasives then it should be replaced. With out hearing the noise it's hard to diagnose but most likely one of the timing pulleys may have come loose or not been installed properly. The belt may be slapping against the covers. All in all it sounds like you got a raw deal. At my dealership the head gasket would have only been about an extra 300 - 500 dollars. Timing belt would have been about the same price maybe even cheaper, plus you get a Chrysler trained technician to work on your car.
I'm sorry you had a bad experience at a "want to be prestigous" shop. I can't tell you how many times I've heard this story. That's not to say that dealerships don't screw up sometimes too but are a lot less likely.
Typically on a job like yours I would have bid :new timing belt pulleys, tensioner and cover set (If yours was an older engine), oil change, coolant, all belts, with having to remove the head a complete head gasket set. As far as spark plugs, as soon as I go the head off and saw they where worn out then it should have only cost the price of the plugs (about 1.75 -2 bucks a piece). Head bolts can be reused if they haven't stretched..
As for the EGR going bad... First that tells me you have an older engine that would need the new tensioner and cover package, second I can prove anything but it may just have been bad timing. (Was the light on when you picked it up or came on after driving for awhile?).
As for the A/c not working. Could have been an oversight but should have been caught on the test drive.... if they even did one which it sounds like they didn't.
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Old 28 Sep 2009, 05:39 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

By all means contact the better business bureau and report them. It's the least you can do for them.
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Old 28 Sep 2009, 08:09 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

It does seem funny that as soon as you had a complaint you were told to "Contact my lawyer". Sounds like they have had a problem or two in the past, that they should be so defensive.
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Old 29 Sep 2009, 01:36 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Thanks all for feedback,
Raw deal, lesson learned. Am taking them to court, its pretty bad. We did get calls as to more problems before I picked up car the 3rd time, now supposedly its heating up because electric fan is failing, right. I hot connected and ran and it is fine. As to rattling in the front of motor they said that noise was from the tranny, right. Tranny is on the other side of car, I think they were trying to sell me a tranny then. We're taking them to court, be tough to really prove anything as I would need to take in to another mechanic, no funds, all into original non fix. I think they did do the belt, you can hear the high pitched whine of it. Oh well, if your ever in Colorado Springs, CO please feel free to go somewhere other than Aspen Auto Clinic or Aspen Coachworks, the owne is Greg Bunch ASE Master, and has never made any attempt himself to talk to us about problems. Live nd learn. Anyone know an honest mechanic in this area??? Thanks for all your feedback.
zmaster
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Old 29 Sep 2009, 01:49 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Look into small claims court. The $ amount isn't huge; if they don't show up, you win; but collecting is another story...
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Old 29 Sep 2009, 02:09 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Thanks again,
Yes we filed, he lawyered up for small claims, like you say, he's been through this stuff before, go figure. Well I'm going to switch plugs at least, will probably take care of mpg. Any reccomendtions on 02' 2.4, auto for plugs, I've been told to stay away from autolites. Bosch or?? 130k on motor.
Keep Cruising
zmaster
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Old 07 May 2010, 04:57 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Quote:
Originally Posted by zmaster View Post
Hi all, My 02 went to the shop for routine timing belt/tensioner/water pump replacement, minor oil leak(looked like valve cover), $1400 estimate. Got a call from shop saying it needed a head gasket replaced too. 3 days later bill was $2400. Ouch. Floated a loan to pay it. Questioned time billing as they had everything apart anyway. After picking up, AC didn't work and was getting an engine light. Took it back in, said egr failed and re-charges ac system. Seemed okay. Drove about 3000 miles on trip and car electric fan came on everytime car idled, gas mileage was all over (19 then 25). Now alot of rattling in front of motor. Checked oil and was down a quart! Put oil in still rattling. Checked coolant was out reserve and down an inch in radiator. Pulled plugs (1 and 4) and plugs had not been changed (gap off gauge) and 1 had oil on shaft. Took back to shop said I thought timing was off. They looked at said no they checked with an onboard computer and everything was fine, discussed other issues was told to contact their attorney, lovely. Here's my questions. When doing timing belt wouldn't you just replace everything, idle rollers, etc, flush coolant system, change oil??
They told me they did niether, just replaced coolant and never changed or dropped the oil. They said that chryler put out a memo saying a car with over 50,000 miles it was normal to go through a quat every 1,000 miles? right? On head gasket they said head was fine and replaced bolts with new ones. Q? Wouldn't you have to pull plugs to actually check for milling? Wouldn't you change oil at least once? Wouldn't you replace 50,000 mile plugs? I got ripped? Coolant is not red as before but clear, but still red floating around in it, no oil in it. Oil looks okay, no coolant that I can tell, no oil or coolant leaking outside the motor. With gasket set aren't there all the gasket(head,etc) for everything including they valve cover orings for the spark plug tubes? I'm out of money and can't afford to have someone else look at it right now. Kinda scared to drive too much. Supposedly 2 year 24,000 mile warranty, but have now been told to contact attorney, nice. Pretty "want to be prestigous" shop. I'm an old school motorhead so these tight little motors etc are not for me, too many electronics. Don't know where to look or go for help. Sorry so long on thread.
zmaster
This is Greg Bunch, owner of Aspen Auto Clinic. I would like to say that "zmaster" and I had a long talk and worked through the misunderstanding and mistakes my company made. We fixed all of his issues at no charge and apologized for the what has happened. The offending staff that were responsible are no longer with my company and we thank "zmaster" for giving me the oportunitiy to make things right. Last I heard his vehicle is running good and I wish him and his wife best.
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Old 07 May 2010, 05:23 pm
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Default Re: 02 pt cruiser,2.4 Timing belt/head gasket

Mr. Bunch.

Thanks for coming to the forum and telling us the final outcome from zmaster's problem. Hopefully he's a satisfied customer now and can look forward to having a place to go to that he can trust.
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