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Oil Leaks - worth fixing?? Insane Quote??

Livingsyngle

New Member
Joined
February 10, 2014
Messages
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City, State
Maine
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 Explorer XLS
Hey everyone,

I'm VERY new here so forgive any "mistakes" I may make in regards to posting. I've never posted in ANY forum and am new, but desperate for info.

I live in Maine where annual state inspections are required on all vehicles. Took my 2000 Ford Explorer XLS (6cyl, 2wd) to get inspected this past weekend and was told it had the following that failed inspection:

Rear Main Seal Leaking
Upper Oil Pan Leaking
Valve Cover Gasket Leaking

and in addition to the oil leaks the Passenger A-Arm is bad and battery not properly held down.

He indicated this would be about $2000 to repair, basically more than the vehicle is worth (I purchased for $2200 2yrs ago) and went on to say it wasn't worth more than $150 and offered to purchase for a local Day of Destruction at one of the race tracks here.

Does this sound right for these types of repairs?? I'm a single Mom, so have no one to really "do" any repairs other than hiring out, but I don't want to get ripped off either.

Any feedback would be appreciated!!
 



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Heck no!! Way too much money for those repairs and the truck is worth more than that for sure. He is trying to screw you over go somewhere else for sure.

For reference those seals are probably 200 bucks total and take all of 2 hours to fix. Tho oil pan is another 100 or so probably..

Total I would say on the WAY high end 1k but really it should be less than that
 






Just keep in mind that the rear main seal requires the removal of the transmission. but still that quote seems way to high.
 






Thank you all so much for the replies!! I have an appt on Wed morning for a second opinion and new quote!! fingers crossed people!!
 






Is he the same shop that failed it for inspection? I cannot believe they fail vehicles for oil leaks in ME, thats crazy! Have a male friend or relative bring it to shop with you, a lot of mechanics see a woman come in and they are going to try and take advantage, good for you for not falling for his scam.
 






A local shop here quoted $350 labor to remove and reinstall the transmission. Figure the seal installation should only take a few minutes at best, maybe 30 at worst (to remove and clean up the surfaces). The seal itself is a $20 part. Add another hour of labor if you have 4WD to remove the transfer case.

IIRC, the oil pan gasket is not a bad fix IF you have a 2WD model. The 4WD models are a huge pain and require dropping the front axle. That may account for a lot of the labor.

The valve cover gaskets shouldn't take more than a couple hours of labor to do, and the gaskets themselves are cheap, maybe $10-20.
 






It is NOT the same shop, and my Dad is taking it for me this time (it's the guy he uses all the time). So hopefully better news.

The same guy who failed it this year, passed last year (with the rear main seal leaking) and even said it would cost more to fix than vehicle was worth, so he passed anyway!!

It is only a 2WD, so hopefully that will cut back on some of the labor/cost!!

It seemed excessive to me too, and was more insulting that he tried to buy it for a $150 bucks when it sounds good, no rust, clean. My mom started for me during the cold to keep the battery from dying as it's parked in their yard and thought it had stalled it was so quiet running.

I'm glad you folks who know more about cars think so too!! :)
 






It is NOT the same shop, and my Dad is taking it for me this time (it's the guy he uses all the time). So hopefully better news.

The same guy who failed it this year, passed last year (with the rear main seal leaking) and even said it would cost more to fix than vehicle was worth, so he passed anyway!!

It is only a 2WD, so hopefully that will cut back on some of the labor/cost!!

It seemed excessive to me too, and was more insulting that he tried to buy it for a $150 bucks when it sounds good, no rust, clean. My mom started for me during the cold to keep the battery from dying as it's parked in their yard and thought it had stalled it was so quiet running.

I'm glad you folks who know more about cars think so too!! :)

It sucks when mechanics try to take advantage of people who they think don't know anything about vehicles it happens from time to time. Good in you for questioning it and not drinking the coolaid that many people do and take their word as God!
 






I think he was trying to either make a nice amount of money off you or get your truck from you REALLY cheap so he could have a vehicle to smash up. I wouldnt go back there ever again but thats just me. I would try and get it passed at another station unless he flagged it in the system for those problems. I never heard of any state failing cars for oil leaks.
 






I was offered $500 for my Explorer when it was totaled (the quote was for the value of the car as scrap metal), so ya...$150 is not practically highway robbery...it is robbery.

I'd write a letter to your state's Attorney General's office reporting the mechanic. Why? Well, two reasons:

1. He'll think twice the next time he tries to pull this on someone else.

2. They might require 10 complaints to actually take action, and yours might be #10 .
 






Great question is how bad are the leaks? Like does it leave a big oil puddle under the truck, or just a couple spots? Do you have to regularly add oil?

If not, then getting flagged is a little ridiculous. I know its winter, but run the truck through a couple undercarriage washes to get any old oil and grime off, then park it with a piece of clean cardboard under it to see how much is really leaking. Frankly if its not much like a couple drops, a simple oil change with a bottle of main seal leakstop additive will likely cure that issue.

http://www.autozone.com/autozone/ac...260b?itemIdentifier=348035&_requestid=3515719


Passenger arm - didnt say if it was upper or lower, or if it was the bushings or the ball joints. Passenger side is an inexpensive 2-piece upper unit that can be purchased for under $50 at most parts stores, installed is maybe $125. Lower is more labor intensive but very likely he would have said lower ball joints if that was the case.

Battery is secured by a block and bolt. If it is missing, can be had at any junk yard for under $5 if you want an original, or just spend $10 at the local auto parts store and get one of these:

http://www.autozone.com/autozone/ac...-25rs?itemIdentifier=95989&_requestid=3510020
 






You know.. we haven't noticed ANY oil spots on the ground at all and with all the snow we've had, you'd think there's be a fresh/dirty spot it it was leaking badly. Nor do we smell any oil burning when the car is running or driven.

The garage that it is being taken to for the 2nd opinion did use a sealant for an oil leak on my Mom's car, so hopefully they will be able to do the same for mine!! :)

The a-arm is the upper passenger. Good to know that's not a huge costly job. And of course the battery is the least of my worries.

Can't thank you all enough for your input.. you've definitely set this girls mind at ease some!!
 






went on to say it wasn't worth more than $150 and offered to purchase for a local Day of Destruction at one of the race tracks here
ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS!!!! This is easily the most unprofessional thing I've ever heard.
If your valve cover(s) are actually leaking. IMO you really can't say for sure that the rear main and oil pan is leaking also. As the valve covers are above those items. Replace the valve covers first. Then go from there.
I would just wash the undercarriage really well and take it in for inspection. Then, keep an eye out for drips. Throw some cardboard down and peek under there with a flashlight.(vehicle cold, flat surface and parking brake on)safety first
I recently replaced my valve covers. If an inspection person were to look under there, they may say I have an oil leak. When in fact it's just old oil from before the replacement. So maybe the leaks have been fixed prior to you buying it and it's just old oil caked up under there. Just saying. Anywho, good luck.
 






WAIT!...I'll give you $200.



..just kidding
 






hahaha... thanks for the laugh!! I needed that this morning!!
 






Lesson I've learned, dont take your car to a mechanic and have them find the problem. Do your research, find out whats wrong, then pay to have that fixed (if you dont DIY) The mechanic that told you its worth 150 is a loser. He is just trying to rip somebody off.

If you don't see oil leaking, or any stains underneath, I say get a different inspector. Go all the way to Vermont if you have to.

BTW, I have the highest bid at $350.
 






FYI: scrap valve is around $10.75 per pound right now, so you could scrap it for around $400. i'm not suggesting you should, but it just goes to show that someone telling you it's worth $150 is total bull!
 






FYI: scrap valve is around $10.75 per pound right now, so you could scrap it for around $400. i'm not suggesting you should, but it just goes to show that someone telling you it's worth $150 is total bull!

Holy cow -- $10.75 per pound!! :eek: Thinking more like 10.75 cents per pound for scrap steel. :D
 






Holy cow -- $10.75 per pound!! :eek: Thinking more like 10.75 cents per pound for scrap steel. :D

yep - 10.75 cents per pound (sorry, brain fart). i was at the recycler 2 weeks ago and that's what they were paying.
 



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You guys ROCK!! The 2nd opinion paid off, along with all your suggestions on what to ask and having my Dad take it.. My car is repaired and stickered for a total cost of $245!! Thank you all SO much!!
 






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