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What to do with my beloved PT?

 
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  #31 (permalink)  
Old 02 Jan 2017, 10:48 pm
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rckstein View Post
I hope you might just be confused about what the mechanic was talking about, or you need to find a different mechanic if he says the thermostat is under the dash.
I just did a google search on this repair shop and found out that they have horrible reviews and have pulled this BS on several people besides us. But like I said, we went to a different mechanic because the mechanic that worked on our A/C was charging outrageous prices, so we tried another. I don't know how we're going to find someone who'll do a good job around here.
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  #32 (permalink)  
Old 02 Jan 2017, 11:08 pm
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Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Amboy, Indiana
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Wink Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imakenocents View Post
The thermostat is seated in the aluminum thermostat housing attached to the cylinder head located on the passenger side front of the cylinder head. The upper thermostat housing is plastic and the upper radiator hose runs from the upper radiator over to the plastic cover. There are two bolts that hold the top cover onto the lower thermostat housing. The thermostat is sandwiched between those two pieces.
I should have been more specific the area I'm referring to here is in the engine bay under the hood. Certainly not under the interior dash as your mechanic apparently tried to say.
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  #33 (permalink)  
Old 02 Jan 2017, 11:28 pm
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Imakenocents View Post
I should have been more specific the area I'm referring to here is in the engine bay under the hood. Certainly not under the interior dash as your mechanic apparently tried to say.
Thanks, I actually figured that out. I took auto mechanics in my youth so I remember what a cylinder head was and knew it wasn't under the dashboard

Now I don't think we ever made it to A/C systems and compressors though .
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  #34 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 05:26 am
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Location: Central Florida
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PTtreegirl View Post
Wife here. My husband says he has been monitoring the temp gauge since the heater went out several weeks ago, and everything looks OK. I thought he responded to that suggestion but maybe not. Yeah, I agree, the $1,500 quote is criminal now knowing what the part costs, but what is worse is that we went to TWO different mechanics for each of the problems and they both tried to rip us off and/or were incompetent. I watched my husband reply to the heater core suggestion and he said that they did replace it with a rebuilt one. Does that sound legit? Or was that BS also? Jeesh, I think we could drive to Indiana from where we live in Virginia and still come out ahead! I guess we'd freeze on the way though. I'll have my husband reply to you tomorrow - he went to bed already - EST ya know . But thank you very much for all your help! We really appreciate it. I'll try to update when we find someone we trust to do the work. I hope it's soon, it is supposed to get cold next weekend. Thanks again!

If they went to all this work, they had better put a brand new one in.

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  #35 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 05:35 am
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

One post says that the radiator was replaced with a remanufactured core. I thought that the PT radiator is basically a throw away item and replaced with new, if you need a new one, not like the old (all metal) radiators that can be repaired? Was the radiator replaced as well as the heater core? For the a/c, one test that can be done is a dye test to check for leaks. Did the shop do such a test or just automatically say the compressor was bad? Also, is this the same shop that did the timing belt work?
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Last edited by rckstein; 03 Jan 2017 at 06:52 am.
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  #36 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 08:22 am
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rckstein View Post
One post says that the radiator was replaced with a remanufactured core. I thought that the PT radiator is basically a throw away item and replaced with new, if you need a new one, not like the old (all metal) radiators that can be repaired? Was the radiator replaced as well as the heater core? For the a/c, one test that can be done is a dye test to check for leaks. Did the shop do such a test or just automatically say the compressor was bad? Also, is this the same shop that did the timing belt work?
I'm guessing that they meant that the radiator was flushed and the heater core was replaced, but there's so many repetitive posts and information being suggested, that I can't keep up. I'm bowing out of this one.
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  #37 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 09:50 am
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Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LionPT View Post
If they went to all this work, they had better put a brand new one in.

OK, wife here. Don't think DH remembered exactly what they did at the shop and what they told him. But I looked at the receipts and this is the work I think was done, one shop for the AC and a different one for the Heater. I also called the shop that worked on the A/C this morning to confirm what they told him:


The A/C: did a freon recharge, in April. Was running hot again in Sept. The receipt said: they "spent a reasonable amount of time" checking the hoses for leaks" in Sept. Recharged the freon again. They had a discussion with my husband about needing a new compressor, because they couldn't find any leaks in the lines/hoses and the freon recharge wasn't working for long. They gave him a ball park figure for a new compressor at $1,200 to $1,500. He told them he didn't want to pay that much and so we never got it repaired because summer was over. The cost in Sept was $160. I don't know what the cost in April was because I can't find the receipt, but probably about the same. So, about $320 so far on the A/C without a working A/C.

The heater: Receipt dated 12/06. What the receipt says they did was:
Checked coolant level in radiator, but no replacement.
Pressure tested coolant system for leaks
Checked condition of hoses and belts
Replaced the thermostat
Performed back flush of heater core
Noted that: "Should problems continue, Heater Core will need to be replaced".

So I think my husband got confused with what was under the dashboard and what was fixed/replaced. The heater core was NOT replaced. The thermostat was. I don't know what they quoted him on the cost of replacing the heater core, but he obviously doesn't want to pay for it, knowing that it is going to be a heck of a job taking out the dashboard and steering, etc.

What he was charged was $381 in labor, and $101 for parts for a total of $490. But that did include fixing the windshield sprayers (two nozzles for $50!!!) , and fixing a leak in one of the tires (they had to take off the tire, repair it, and put it back on).

So total cost of A/C plus Heater work = $810 with no working heater or A/C, and a quote of $1,200 -$1,500 to replace the A/C compressor with no estimate of replacing heater core yet.

I called the shop that did the AC repair because it had much better reviews when I did a google search on them. They said they were willing to look at the car and provide a quote and see if a heater core replacement was necessary (since they didn't do the work on the heater - they said it might be a less expensive fix) and re-assess the A/C, but said, looking at their notes, it most likely did need a new compressor at a cost of $1200 - $1500. I asked him about the cost of the A/C compressor part and he told me it would cost him $400, even though I said it was listed online at $260. Then he got huffy with me and said "There's a reason they don't make PT Cruisers anymore - they have a lot of problems and they're hard to work on". So anyway, my husband is going to take it in tomorrow and get and estimate on the work needed, and hopefully make an informed decision on what to do with it. My husband is still thinking it's not worth it to invest $2,000 + more into it. I don't know what he thinks we should do with it, as it will be worthless as a trade-in and no one is going to buy a car with no heat or A/C. This sticker price on the car was $26K (I paid less than half that 2 years later) and it's only 9 years old, so I'm upset that such a nice care is being considered a piece of junk. Anyway, I'll let you guys know what we learn tomorrow.
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  #38 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 09:53 am
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Posts: 38
Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chuzz View Post
I'm guessing that they meant that the radiator was flushed and the heater core was replaced, but there's so many repetitive posts and information being suggested, that I can't keep up. I'm bowing out of this one.
So sorry!!! Here's the true scoop after looking at the receipts and talking to one of the mechanics. I appreciate everyone taking their time to help.

OK, wife here. Don't think DH remembered exactly what they did at the shop and what they told him. But I looked at the receipts and this is the work I think was done, one shop for the AC and a different one for the Heater. I also called the shop that worked on the A/C this morning to confirm what they told him:


The A/C: did a freon recharge, in April. Was running hot again in Sept. The receipt said: they "spent a reasonable amount of time" checking the hoses for leaks" in Sept. Recharged the freon again. They had a discussion with my husband about needing a new compressor, because they couldn't find any leaks in the lines/hoses and the freon recharge wasn't working for long. They gave him a ball park figure for a new compressor at $1,200 to $1,500. He told them he didn't want to pay that much and so we never got it repaired because summer was over. The cost in Sept was $160. I don't know what the cost in April was because I can't find the receipt, but probably about the same. So, about $320 so far on the A/C without a working A/C.

The heater: Receipt dated 12/06. What the receipt says they did was:
Checked coolant level in radiator, but no replacement.
Pressure tested coolant system for leaks
Checked condition of hoses and belts
Replaced the thermostat
Performed back flush of heater core
Noted that: "Should problems continue, Heater Core will need to be replaced".

So I think my husband got confused with what was under the dashboard and what was fixed/replaced. The heater core was NOT replaced. The thermostat was. I don't know what they quoted him on the cost of replacing the heater core, but he obviously doesn't want to pay for it, knowing that it is going to be a heck of a job taking out the dashboard and steering, etc.

What he was charged was $381 in labor, and $101 for parts for a total of $490. But that did include fixing the windshield sprayers (two nozzles for $50!!!) , and fixing a leak in one of the tires (they had to take off the tire, repair it, and put it back on).

So total cost of A/C plus Heater work = $810 with no working heater or A/C, and a quote of $1,200 -$1,500 to replace the A/C compressor with no estimate of replacing heater core yet.

I called the shop that did the AC repair because it had much better reviews when I did a google search on them. They said they were willing to look at the car and provide a quote and see if a heater core replacement was necessary (since they didn't do the work on the heater - they said it might be a less expensive fix) and re-assess the A/C, but said, looking at their notes, it most likely did need a new compressor at a cost of $1200 - $1500. I asked him about the cost of the A/C compressor part and he told me it would cost him $400, even though I said it was listed online at $260. Then he got huffy with me and said "There's a reason they don't make PT Cruisers anymore - they have a lot of problems and they're hard to work on". So anyway, my husband is going to take it in tomorrow and get and estimate on the work needed, and hopefully make an informed decision on what to do with it. My husband is still thinking it's not worth it to invest $2,000 + more into it. I don't know what he thinks we should do with it, as it will be worthless as a trade-in and no one is going to buy a car with no heat or A/C. This sticker price on the car was $26K (I paid less than half that 2 years later) and it's only 9 years old, so I'm upset that such a nice care is being considered a piece of junk. Anyway, I'll let you guys know what we learn tomorrow.
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  #39 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 09:56 am
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Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 38
Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rckstein View Post
One post says that the radiator was replaced with a remanufactured core. I thought that the PT radiator is basically a throw away item and replaced with new, if you need a new one, not like the old (all metal) radiators that can be repaired? Was the radiator replaced as well as the heater core? For the a/c, one test that can be done is a dye test to check for leaks. Did the shop do such a test or just automatically say the compressor was bad? Also, is this the same shop that did the timing belt work?

So sorry for the confusing info. See my reply above with the true scoop as far as I can tell from looking at the receipts and talking to one of the mechanics this morning. Thank you again for your help!

Last edited by PTtreegirl; 03 Jan 2017 at 10:21 am.
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  #40 (permalink)  
Old 03 Jan 2017, 10:47 am
rckstein's Avatar
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Euless, TX
Posts: 6,945
Default Re: What to do with my beloved PT?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PTtreegirl View Post
OK, wife here. Don't think DH remembered exactly what they did at the shop and what they told him. But I looked at the receipts and this is the work I think was done, one shop for the AC and a different one for the Heater. I also called the shop that worked on the A/C this morning to confirm what they told him:


The A/C: did a freon recharge, in April. Was running hot again in Sept. The receipt said: they "spent a reasonable amount of time" checking the hoses for leaks" in Sept. Recharged the freon again. They had a discussion with my husband about needing a new compressor, because they couldn't find any leaks in the lines/hoses and the freon recharge wasn't working for long. They gave him a ball park figure for a new compressor at $1,200 to $1,500. He told them he didn't want to pay that much and so we never got it repaired because summer was over. The cost in Sept was $160. I don't know what the cost in April was because I can't find the receipt, but probably about the same. So, about $320 so far on the A/C without a working A/C.

The heater: Receipt dated 12/06. What the receipt says they did was:
Checked coolant level in radiator, but no replacement.
Pressure tested coolant system for leaks
Checked condition of hoses and belts
Replaced the thermostat
Performed back flush of heater core
Noted that: "Should problems continue, Heater Core will need to be replaced".

So I think my husband got confused with what was under the dashboard and what was fixed/replaced. The heater core was NOT replaced. The thermostat was. I don't know what they quoted him on the cost of replacing the heater core, but he obviously doesn't want to pay for it, knowing that it is going to be a heck of a job taking out the dashboard and steering, etc.

What he was charged was $381 in labor, and $101 for parts for a total of $490. But that did include fixing the windshield sprayers (two nozzles for $50!!!) , and fixing a leak in one of the tires (they had to take off the tire, repair it, and put it back on).

So total cost of A/C plus Heater work = $810 with no working heater or A/C, and a quote of $1,200 -$1,500 to replace the A/C compressor with no estimate of replacing heater core yet.

I called the shop that did the AC repair because it had much better reviews when I did a google search on them. They said they were willing to look at the car and provide a quote and see if a heater core replacement was necessary (since they didn't do the work on the heater - they said it might be a less expensive fix) and re-assess the A/C, but said, looking at their notes, it most likely did need a new compressor at a cost of $1200 - $1500. I asked him about the cost of the A/C compressor part and he told me it would cost him $400, even though I said it was listed online at $260. Then he got huffy with me and said "There's a reason they don't make PT Cruisers anymore - they have a lot of problems and they're hard to work on". So anyway, my husband is going to take it in tomorrow and get and estimate on the work needed, and hopefully make an informed decision on what to do with it. My husband is still thinking it's not worth it to invest $2,000 + more into it. I don't know what he thinks we should do with it, as it will be worthless as a trade-in and no one is going to buy a car with no heat or A/C. This sticker price on the car was $26K (I paid less than half that 2 years later) and it's only 9 years old, so I'm upset that such a nice care is being considered a piece of junk. Anyway, I'll let you guys know what we learn tomorrow.
There's not much argument you can give a shop on parts pricing. In my experience, shops generally charge about double for the parts, from what you can get the same part over the counter, because the shop has to cover their labor should the part fail during the warranty period. The bigger question is, is a new compressor going to fix the issues, or are they just throwing parts at your car, hoping they eventually replace the correct part?
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