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TDI 101 Got a simple/basic TDI question? Are you a newbie (new to the forums). Feel free to post your question here.

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Old July 13th, 2015, 08:50   #1
bsculthorpe
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Default Replace Thermostat Housing?

2004 Jetta TDI
Dropped off at local Foreign Auto Shop to check out Oil Drip and Check Engine Light diagnosis. (Busy so don't have a lot of time to look into some of this stuff myself, first problem)

Their diagnosis from the check engine light is something electrical, which they traced to the thermostat housing. They want $2,600 to replace the entire housing, and say the part is $1,800? What am I missing here. The threads online say the thermostat should be good for a long time and rarely need replaced, and even then a new thermostat is $50?

Any help or feedback is appreciated. At this point, I will sell the car as it doesn't make sense to spend $3k in my mind.
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Old July 13th, 2015, 08:52   #2
yatzee
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what is $1800?! How does a thermostat housing have an electrical fault?!

Something smells funny.
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Old July 13th, 2015, 09:23   #3
bsculthorpe
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Exactly. They actually called back and lowered it to about $800 to replace thermostat and coolant sensor. Said that is what is tripping the engine light.
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Old July 13th, 2015, 10:30   #4
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The Coolant Temp Sensor on an older car can drift over time and set a CEL.

The T-stat housing can warp and then leak over time, as well. Is the housing actually leaking? Are you having to add coolant more often than every 6 months or so?

An OEM T-stat is $22, A T-stat housing is, on the high side, $68. I couldn't find the O-rings and CTS (maybe $25?) on the 1rst VW parts web site doing a quick search and plus, the parts should be ordered by VIN, anyway.

Also, there would be replacement coolant and labor.

Wow!!! $2600 is highway robbery when just changing the CTS may be all that is wrong. It wouldn't be a bad idea to change the T-stat and housing because of age of the car, but they could be just fine. The shop could change the CTS and then use VCDS to check if the T-stat is maintaining temp.

That shop is trying to rob you blind. Run away as fast as you can. The fact that they lowered the price by $800 should tell you something.
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Old July 13th, 2015, 11:02   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsculthorpe View Post
...
Dropped off at local Foreign Auto Shop .... They want $2,600 to replace the entire housing, and say the part is $1,800? What am I missing here. ...
'Local' being West Palm Beach, they must have been looking in the Porsche-BMW parts price list. But their labor rate is going to be higher than a scared cat's behind no matter what.

So...

Sell your car to me for $1. It is junk anyway.

Cheers!

PH
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Old July 13th, 2015, 11:09   #6
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Coolant sensor is a 10-15 minute job.

Thermostat with housing flat rates at 1.5 hours.

Figure in the parts prices from above and they must have a really high labor rate and parts mark-up!
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Old July 13th, 2015, 11:55   #7
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seriously what a freaking joke, get your car out of there ASAP and tell them to rotate on there $800 thermostat housing... For $800 I could drive to Florida from washington buy all the parts, do the work then drive home and still feel like I ripped you off...
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Old July 13th, 2015, 12:05   #8
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Mechanic is on crack, maybe?
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Old July 13th, 2015, 18:40   #9
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You need to call them out on this in person in front of other customers. I was a flat rate tech for close to 10 years at a Audi dealer in the northeast (so I know high prices) they are either total idiots or they are knowingly trying to rape you and you have to call them out either way. Ask them the labor and parts price. Then tell them that the price for the sensor,oring,and clip at the dealer is $50 and the thermostat is $45 and the housing is about $60 at the dealer so how do they get $1800. And the labor with an 1hr diag at the dealer is 2.5 hrs and the thermostat is about 1.5 hrs so how do they come up with there price.

Let us know what they say when you let them know that you know what the real cost should be
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Old July 14th, 2015, 06:29   #10
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Seems to me that they don't want the work.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 10:30   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JETaah View Post
Seems to me that they don't want the work.
Couldn't agree more. It's like a bar tender charging a drunk $20 or more for a shot of whiskey.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 11:42   #12
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And this is why shops get a bad name, total BS.

I guess they figured you're a tourist????
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Old July 14th, 2015, 12:24   #13
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this thread illustrates the reason I started to learn about cars and do my own work.

it all started when I was ripped around 500 then a further 100 something for a diagnostic that never told me anything nor diagnosed anything. few years later the shop owner burned down his shop for insurance money but got caught lol idiot.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 14:18   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JB05 View Post
Couldn't agree more. It's like a bar tender charging a drunk $20 or more for a shot of whiskey.
There was a bar in NYC years ago owned by two American Indian brothers. Most drinks were normally priced, but Manhattans were $24.00.
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Old July 14th, 2015, 14:49   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1854sailor View Post
there was a bar in nyc years ago owned by two american indian brothers. Most drinks were normally priced, but manhattans were $24.00.
lol!!
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