Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

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Old 14 Jun 2006, 11:39 am   #1 (permalink)
Jon
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Default Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

I'm wondering if there are guideliness people could suggest for when an
inexperienced owner should go to a dealer versus a generic Midas shop.
My '99 Camry has almost 140,000 miles on it and the dealership
recommended the following repairs:


Oxygen Sensor ("about to go")

Left and Right Inner Tie Rods

Front Pipe [Do with Oil Pan Reseal]

Rear Struts / Rear Sway Bar Bushings

Front Brake Pads and Rotors



As one might expect, for some of these items, Midas is substantially
cheaper. I'm wondering which might be considered "run of the mill,"
and which might be considered more involved and if that's a good way of
determining who should do the work?

Thanks in advance,

Jon

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Old 14 Jun 2006, 11:55 am   #2 (permalink)
Daniel
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

Jon wrote:
> I'm wondering if there are guideliness people could suggest for when an
> inexperienced owner should go to a dealer versus a generic Midas shop.
> My '99 Camry has almost 140,000 miles on it and the dealership
> recommended the following repairs:
>
>
> Oxygen Sensor ("about to go")
>
> Left and Right Inner Tie Rods
>
> Front Pipe [Do with Oil Pan Reseal]
>
> Rear Struts / Rear Sway Bar Bushings
>
> Front Brake Pads and Rotors
>
>
>
> As one might expect, for some of these items, Midas is substantially
> cheaper. I'm wondering which might be considered "run of the mill,"
> and which might be considered more involved and if that's a good way of
> determining who should do the work?
>
> Thanks in advance,
>
> Jon

==========================
I'd get a second opinion, but not from Midas.
Check Google for click and clack the tappet brothers, their site has
local mechanics with recommendations from people that have used them.
A relative recently tried this in So. Calif. and was very pleased with
the savings and service.

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Old 14 Jun 2006, 12:21 pm   #3 (permalink)
m Ransley
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

Hows your milage, oxygen sensors go or no go, they dont about to go.

Tie rods, hows your steering?
Front pipe, is it leaking, if not leave it.
How old are struts, bushings are a 15$ job.
How are the brakes, so far it looks like the dealer just needs a job.
But maybe your car need alot of maintenance, Dealers are always
overpriced, Midas is ok, shop for prices.

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Old 14 Jun 2006, 02:55 pm   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

How much did the dealership quote you versus Midas?

Midas used to be a good muffler shop. Dont know about their mechanical
credibility.

If I need to get something done I can't or won't do myself, I tend to go to
a good independent shop. I try to find someone I can trust, both ethically
and professionally, and use them when I need them..

Dealerships often suck. Franchise garages sometimes do too.

Oxygen sensors, contrary to another poster, are not a go/no go situation.
They can get sluggish, begin to operate near the ends of their range or
deviate out of range. You don't have to use Toyota parts, but some of the
aftermarket units are not of good quality. Some are. If your car is
running
okay, no error codes are noted, mileage is good, maybe you dont need the
OS.

On the tie rods, have them checked out. They are either worn or they
aren't. You don't change them like a shirt just because you have owned
them so long, or they are a little grey.

Rear struts and bushings...could be. Depends on mileage, handling, etc.

Front pads and rotors...Pads if you need them, rotors if they are worn or
warped
beyond use. They aren't hard to check.

"Jon" <JLPPLJ@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1150303147.400509.180920@u72g2000cwu.googlegr oups.com...
> I'm wondering if there are guideliness people could suggest for when an
> inexperienced owner should go to a dealer versus a generic Midas shop.
> My '99 Camry has almost 140,000 miles on it and the dealership
> recommended the following repairs:
>
>
> Oxygen Sensor ("about to go")
>
> Left and Right Inner Tie Rods
>
> Front Pipe [Do with Oil Pan Reseal]
>
> Rear Struts / Rear Sway Bar Bushings
>
> Front Brake Pads and Rotors
>
>
>
> As one might expect, for some of these items, Midas is substantially
> cheaper. I'm wondering which might be considered "run of the mill,"
> and which might be considered more involved and if that's a good way of
> determining who should do the work?
>
> Thanks in advance,
>
> Jon
>



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Old 14 Jun 2006, 06:25 pm   #5 (permalink)
Mark A
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

"Jon" <JLPPLJ@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1150303147.400509.180920@u72g2000cwu.googlegr oups.com...
> I'm wondering if there are guideliness people could suggest for when an
> inexperienced owner should go to a dealer versus a generic Midas shop.
> My '99 Camry has almost 140,000 miles on it and the dealership
> recommended the following repairs:
>
>
> Oxygen Sensor ("about to go")
>
> Left and Right Inner Tie Rods
>
> Front Pipe [Do with Oil Pan Reseal]
>
> Rear Struts / Rear Sway Bar Bushings
>
> Front Brake Pads and Rotors
>
> As one might expect, for some of these items, Midas is substantially
> cheaper. I'm wondering which might be considered "run of the mill,"
> and which might be considered more involved and if that's a good way of
> determining who should do the work?
>
> Thanks in advance,
>
> Jon
>


I would not let Midas near my car. In my experience, Midas is at least as
expensive as a dealer (especially after they get the car on the lift),
unless they are using non-OEM parts, in which case you need to exercise some
caution.

For struts, I might consider someone other than a dealer, but probably not
Midas.


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Old 14 Jun 2006, 06:45 pm   #6 (permalink)
PeonHonda
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair


im a little curious of how they know that the o2 sensor is about to go?


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Old 14 Jun 2006, 09:53 pm   #7 (permalink)
Mark A
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

"PeonHonda" <PeonHonda.29f25m@no-mx.forums.yourdomain.com.au> wrote in
message news:PeonHonda.29f25m@no-mx.forums.yourdomain.com.au...
>
> im a little curious of how they know that the o2 sensor is about to go?
>


Sometimes the engine check light (with corresponding O2 code) will
illuminate intermittently.


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Old 15 Jun 2006, 07:20 pm   #8 (permalink)
marmar5
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

My dealer quoted me $746 for rear struts and another $130 for rear
sway-bar bushings. This is for a 2000 Camry with 130K.

That seems too high, so I am going to get a quote from an independent
shop.

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Old 16 Jun 2006, 06:23 am   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair


"marmar5" <marmar5@sbcglobal.net> wrote in message
news:1150417253.800905.164030@f6g2000cwb.googlegro ups.com...
> My dealer quoted me $746 for rear struts and another $130 for rear
> sway-bar bushings. This is for a 2000 Camry with 130K.
>
> That seems too high, so I am going to get a quote from an independent
> shop.



Might be wise. NAPA Online lists rear struts for that car for $61 each.

Find a GOOD independent mechanic. There are many of them out there
who are as good as, and possibly better than, the dealership mechs.
They have a reputation to maintain, but dont have to charge an arm and
a leg to support all the dealership activities.

If dealerships delivered what they charge for, it might be a different
story,
but -often as not - they may be overpriced and less than satisfactory.


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Old 16 Jun 2006, 11:28 am   #10 (permalink)
Daniel
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Default Re: Toyota Dealership versus Local Midas Shop for repair

PeonHonda wrote:
> im a little curious of how they know that the o2 sensor is about to go?

==================
This should probably have been asked as a separate question, but here's
my answer.
Since I've got the '94 with OBD1, yours may differ.
The oxygen sensor is essentially made of zirconia. This is the material
similar to a diamond in hardness - like those imitation diamonds
marketed as cubic zirconia.
The oxygen sensor contains a metal shell with vents to the atmosphere.
When the O2 sensor gets really hot in the exhaust stream, the presence
of oxygen creates a tiny electrical voltage which triggers the
electronic engine computer to alter the fuel injector pulse width
controlling the amount of fuel injected.
So in normal operation the electrical signal is fluctuating back and
forth.
According to my service manual, with voltmeter leads connected to the
underhood diagnostic port, if the needle fluctuates more than 8 times
in 10 seconds the O2 sensor is good.
Newer O2 sensors have an added heater, to bring the unit up to
operating temperature more quickly to reduce emissions which are higher
when the engine is cold and the O2 heater filament can fail similar to
a filament burning out in a standard incandescent light bulb.
People say oxygen sensors "get lazy" over time, and that's why they
need to be replaced. This means they respond more slowly to changes in
ambient oxygen levels, but the material is like a ceramic, with very
small pores through which oxygen can be transmitted.
My own personal theory is that carbon accumulation causes the
"laziness."
Also burning oil, sulfur compounds I believe, plus I know for sure the
acetic acid released during silicone sealer curing will destroy an O2
sensor.
The Red Line complete fuel system cleaner I use in every tankful (just
a small amount) claims to survive the combustion process and safely
clean emission control components.
I keep wondering if the O2 sensor should be changed just based on
mileage as I approach 150,000 miles, but it still tests just fine, and
the last smog test showed percentage of oxygen at 25 mph as 0.0.

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