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Old 12-13-2012, 06:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Car Help

Tell me if any of this sounds fishy or not.

I have a 1997 Dodge Caravan with 3.0 liter engine.
The car computer says that cylinder 6 misfires.
Mechanic says the engine has low compression and that cylinder 6 probably has a burnt valve and that fixing it would cost more than the car.
I got the car for $400 because of that.
I drove it a couple thousand miles with that problem.

Now it is leaking coolant and over heating and stalling.
I took it to mechanic today.
It is leaking from the water pump.
He says he has to take everything apart to get to it.
That means removing the timing belt and other stuff.
He says after parts and labor it is going to cost around $600.
And as long as I have the timing belt off it should be replaced too.

But if it is fixed cylinder 6 would still be bad and the car would still not be worth much and have a short life expectancy.

He says he can replace the engine for about $1000-1200. The new engine would have about 10,000 miles.

My options seem to be
1. Put "blue devil" in it and hope that fixes the leak.
2. Fix the water pump. Leave cylinder 6 misfiring.
3. Replace the engine.
4. Sell the car and buy something else.
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kong View Post
Tell me if any of this sounds fishy or not.

I have a 1997 Dodge Caravan with 3.0 liter engine.
The car computer says that cylinder 6 misfires.
Mechanic says the engine has low compression and that cylinder 6 probably has a burnt valve and that fixing it would cost more than the car.
I got the car for $400 because of that.
I drove it a couple thousand miles with that problem.

Now it is leaking coolant and over heating and stalling.
I took it to mechanic today.
It is leaking from the water pump.
He says he has to take everything apart to get to it.
That means removing the timing belt and other stuff.
He says after parts and labor it is going to cost around $600.
And as long as I have the timing belt off it should be replaced too.

But if it is fixed cylinder 6 would still be bad and the car would still not be worth much and have a short life expectancy.

He says he can replace the engine for about $1000-1200. The new engine would have about 10,000 miles.

My options seem to be
1. Put "blue devil" in it and hope that fixes the leak.
2. Fix the water pump. Leave cylinder 6 misfiring.
3. Replace the engine.
4. Sell the car and buy something else.
I'm no mechanic, but for me personally, #4 for sure.
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

Buy a Honda they last and can be cheap.

Unrelated; the code for the EGR valve keeps coming up and the engine light comes and goes, the dealer wants to replace everything and the mechanic is stumped, what could it be?
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Old 12-13-2012, 10:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

misfire is usually from it not having spark, if he could tell you it had a burnt valve with out cracking it open, then be wary.... leaking from the water pump would mean bad gaskets or someone was trying to be a backyard mechanic and didnt tighten it properly but im not familiar with newer engines (by that i mean 1990+) so i'd have no idea about that, hell if it leaks just put water in it, unless it gets freezeing where you are.. my camaro goes through water within a week
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:06 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

It goes through a gallon of water in less than 10 minutes.
It was a different guy that said it was probably a burnt valve. He did checked the compression and did some other stuff that made sense at the time.

Basically I am just wondering if it sounds honest that replacing a water pump will cost over $600 and replacing an engine will cost a little over $1000.
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

its pretty cheap considering i had less of a problem (messed up the ignition coil wiring) and had to pay 500$ to get it back, either pay the 1000 for a new engine or scrap it and get a different car
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

@Katz: Is $1000 so cheap for an engine replacement that Kong should be worried that it's a scam?
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

I'm no expert at all but 1k does sound cheap for that kind of work. I would be worried the "new" engine has hidden issues. Can't you get second or third opinions from other mechanics in the area?
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:57 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

1000 seems about right, that 3.0 is definitely more common then the 3800 i had to find so it should be pretty easy for the mechanic to find one for less than 400$ (i paid 600$ and had to go 80 miles away) then add the labor and it sounds about right, although i dont think it will add up too 1000 exactly
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Old 12-17-2012, 09:13 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

I bought a new van for 900 and sold the old one for scrap.

New van is coincidentally the exact same model and color but 2 years newer. They look identical.

Thanks for suggestions.
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Old 12-17-2012, 11:42 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

yeah i figured it'd be that route, minivans are a dime a dozen it seems
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:21 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

What did you get for the broken van?
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Old 12-18-2012, 05:25 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

KONG .............SELL IT... your goin too lose money bro,,, fuel unjectors are alot just dump it

---------- Post added at 03:25 AM ---------- Previous post was at 03:20 AM ----------

ouch 600 for a water pump........ dude u need 2 learn basic car repairs... not 2 hard
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:07 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Car Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by stevencassidy13 View Post
What did you get for the broken van?
$400. Same as I paid for it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 520outlaw View Post

ouch 600 for a water pump........ dude u need 2 learn basic car repairs... not 2 hard
I only do stuff that I find interesting. I don't care about cars. They said it was so much because to get to the pump they had to take a bunch of stuff off the engine including the timing belt and then put it back on and it would take them about 4-6 hours.

The guys seemed pretty honest. They fixed one leak, diagnosed the other. I watched them while they worked and that took nearly 2 hours. Then they let us store the van in their garage for 5 days and work on it in their garage using some of their tools. Then in the end we asked them what we owed them and they said whatever we felt like giving them.
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