Dealer versus repair shop for transmission rebuild-please help me choose | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Dealer versus repair shop for transmission rebuild-please help me choose


New Member
November 24, 2009
Reaction score
City, State
Forest Hills, NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
'96 Explorer Eddie Bauer
My '96 Explorer (105K miles) is in need of having the transmission rebuilt. I'm a complete newbie, in that I've never needed or experienced this problem before, and so I'm hoping someone here can help me with some guidance.

I live in Forest Hills, NY (Queens) and have a shop called Reliable Transmission nearby, they are a ATRA rebuilder member. Also, there are plenty of Ford dealers nearby as well. Does anyone on this forum live in my area? If so, can you kindly make a good recomendation for who to use?

Finally, what are the pro's and con's of using a private repair shop versus the dealer? Thanks in advance to all who can offer me some advice, it is very appreciated!

Dealer will generally cost you close to double for work. Sometimes you can catch them when they are slow and get a HUGE break, but that is pretty rare.

No matter who you go to you can figure if something fails with the Trans they will try to weasel out of making good on any guarantee.

I've seen quotes all over the map for a rebuilt transmission. You may check your local salvage yard as some rebuild transmissions and back them with a free replacement warranty. While it may be a gamble, you can generally save tons of cash going this route.

If you go to any ATRA certified transmission shop you are pretty well guaranteed a fair price and a good warranty. I alway prefer to rebuild your existing trans rather than use an exchange if possible, as long as it is not fried.
Why do you need a rebuild besides mileage.