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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
emergency update toward end of post.::



We've got an emergency on our hands now.

They said my car would be done last night by 5PM, but called and said they'd need to keep it until morning. I said okay, that's fine.

I just got a call with the owner saying this:

  • Bad news
  • They replaced the "master cylinder" (even though the secretary guy told me all day yesterday that it was the slave) and something still wasn't right so they kept it overnight and kept topping up some fluid but it kept not being right.
  • They now have "no idea" what might be causing it and need to pull the transmission out in order to investigate.
  • He thinks it's "something blowing the valves in my slave cylinder
  • He's estimating another $1,600 charge on top of the $615 I've already paid them for apparently worthless work.
How do I handle this? I don't know what the situation calls for. He said it drives, but that doesn't help me much if something is messing up.


This all seems sketch again. I don't understand why they would just randomly replace some part, then charge me for it, without know it's the cause?
 

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No idea on "book" times but swapping out a transmission on our SAAB's is under 6 hours, give another hour or so for bleeding etc, maybe 8 hours max.

Shop rates should run $80 to $120 per hour, the clutch kit is another $350 or so. Toss in a few dollars for incidentals.

So, I can see where a $1200 bill would come from, but I'd think more like $800.

Reminds me why I do my own work!
 

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I would expect at least $500 for a Viggen clutch disk, pressure plate and slave cylinder. Then you might have to add machining the flywheel and possibly a rear main seal and axle seals while the transmission is out. Then add the labor. My guess is for a shop you've never been to could easily approach $1500... Ron
 

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About a year ago, this job cost me $800 for labor and about $450 for the Viggen pressure plate, clutch disk, and slave cylinder. I also installed an aluminum SPEC flywheel at the time so did not pay for planing the flywheel. I bought the parts at FCP Euro.

When you receive the part, make sure you measure the clutch disk at 228 mm. There are some OE discs floating around out there with the correct part number that are undersized.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Aw man :cry:

I was hoping it'd be lower as I already spent $1,600 on this thing not two weeks ago. I was hoping to use this paycheck for the PCV upgrade; since it broke down I have no choice but to take care of the clutch first. My slave cylinder was replaced last year so it shouldn't need to be done this go around--I hope.

I'll probably go ahead and sink the cash because I simply love the car.. but I may need to consider trading it in. I believe it's only valued at ~$5,000, being a convertible. I still owe more than that on it and have been paying all these repairs in cash. I'm way in the hole on this investment.
...makes me think I should have been taking some mechanic classes.

I won't be buying the parts myself. It was too short notice and the shop ensures they have most of them and can get anything else sent to them tomorrow while they're doing the work. Tow truck guy helped me out by placing it right in front of their garage door in hopes that they'd take care of it first thing.

I'll return tomorrow when I get a call and let you know what the damage is.

Thanks for all of the help!
 

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I have to ask...

when the slave was replaced... the transmission was out of the car.. why didn't you do the clutch?!?!?!.. all the work was already done.. just plot the new plate and disc in there...

I digress...

Just did my Viggen 3 weeks ago... with ALOT of help...
cheapest I could find a Viggen plate and disc on the webnets was $320... slave was another $60

be aware they may hit you with retail prices... Like:
$250 for a Saab slave ...
$450 for the clutch pieces...
$50 or so for the flywheel
$800 or so for the labor

So yeah... gotta learn to work on Saabs or find someone from the board that does and lives close by..(that's what I did)

My Viggen would be in the junk yard by now if I had to pay a mechanic...

in 3 years replaced:
timing cover(had to pull the motor.. ask about how cheap that would have been)
oil pump gears
harmonic balancer
crank seal x2
belt
tensioner pulley x2(broke while under warranty)
rear pads/roters
DIC
clutch
slave
battery
valve cover gasket
pan drop x2
control arms x2(broke under warranty)
struts
rear main seal
SID
ABS control
motor mount
vacuum hoses
thermostat
radiator

Needs:
stanchion arms
tie rod ends
2 motor mounts(have all parts)
head gasket(have all parts)
oil pressure sensor(have)
CPS(at some time)(have just in case)
rear shocks

thats a 2000 viggen bought with 96k on the clock
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
The slave cylinder thing was done a year ago and the mechanic said they normally would but the clutch was in perfect condition (it had been replaced when I bought the car already).

I just heard back from the shop and they said that the slave was the issue (again) and that they're going to go ahead and replace it. The cost is $606 with bleeding and other thangs I didn't understand which is a relief. I visited this post after and saw your recommendation about not getting the clutch done as well, so I called them back to see if it needed to be replaced. They have ensured me that the clutch is still in good condition and has no need to be replaced.

It's a bit strange to get two different opinions on the state of my clutch and I'm confused about what to do. Would you recommend I tell them to go ahead and do the clutch anyways before they start pulling it apart?! I'd rather get it done now rather than being double charged in the future.. but they seem to be completely confident in its current condition.

That said, is there a reason the slave should be dying so often? Is there another issue that may be causing this or maybe the way I'm driving it? I also bought this Viggen with 100k on the clock and it's now up to 170k in only two years.


Also, if anyone here is in Virginia and can show that they do great work, I wouldn't mind paying you over getting super charged by these places. I always pay these repairs in cash. You can send me a PM if you're in the area. I also wouldn't mind hanging out to watch or paying for lessons to take care of the easier items. I really want to know how to work on this thing, but I am too afraid of causing damage. I've looked around for car shows and Saab get-togethers in hopes of finding someone to learn from but have been unable to find any events in the area.

This car is, quite literally, my dream car and I plan/hope to get another in the future when I'm financially stable.
 

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It is strange that 2 slaves died...

the clutch is up to you...

if your local guy will do the clutch for $700 with parts.... that's is not bad at all..

the parts are at least half that...(if they are REAL viggen parts and not the "equivilent fitting" parts) so you are really only gambling $350 or less leaving the clutch in there...

I would think they would want to sell you a clutch if it was needed...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Agreed; are there any determining factors on the life of the slave?

I just looked at the report of the repairs the dealer made before selling it to me... the slave had been replaced then along with the clutch. The prior owner's records say the slave was replaced a year and a half before that, too. I got it replaced about a year ago (less than a year, I believe) when it left me stranded on the side of the road.. and now I'm getting it replaced again.

We're at 4 slave replacements in just under 3.5 years.

I called again and talked to the people actually working on my car (rather than the secretary). They don't recommend swapping out the clutch now as it's condition is still fine. I am going to go ahead and take their word for it so I can scramble around and get the PCV upgrade taken care of in the next week or two.
 

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My mechanic back home usually tightens it for me each time he repairs something
It's a bit strange to get two different opinions on the state of my clutch
The answer to your question may be in your original statement.
The clutch is hydraulic. There is no cable to adjust like older cars.
Unless there is something to adjust on our Saab's that I am unaware of, he is full of poop when he says he "tightened the clutch" for you.
 

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The thing that you need to know is if the slave is an OEM Saab part or an after market part. I would spend more for an OEM part because it "should" last longer.

Also, it's been posted before that you also need to verify that any clutch installed in the car is really a Viggen clutch and not just a clutch that will fit in a Viggen... Ron
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The answer to your question may be in your original statement.
The clutch is hydraulic. There is no cable to adjust like older cars.
Unless there is something to adjust on our Saab's that I am unaware of, he is full of poop when he says he "tightened the clutch" for you.
That is very strange.. as one time the clutch went to the floor and he said the only fix needed was to re-secure this cable. I definitely can tell a difference when he makes the change as my clutch will be very "tight" when I first get it back from the shop--it has a nice feel of resistance to it and it seems closer to the "neutral" position as I can shift more quickly and easily. Over time, this "tightness" goes away and it feels like the clutch is weak and the pedal needs to be used differently when shifting.

I prefer the tight feeling. I don't know the technical terms for these types of things, so if you know what I'm talking about please let me know so I can request that it be done in a more permanent fashion.


The thing that you need to know is if the slave is an OEM Saab part or an after market part. I would spend more for an OEM part because it "should" last longer.

Also, it's been posted before that you also need to verify that any clutch installed in the car is really a Viggen clutch and not just a clutch that will fit in a Viggen... Ron
I just called in--they're probably sick of me--and he confirmed that it is an OEM Saab part. It hasn't yet gotten to the shop.. they are still waiting on it. Mechanic said he'll call me back about it being a Viggen clutch.
 

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Guaranteed they are sick of you already.

Mechanics hate the words "I read online..."

BUT... you have $$ that they want in their pockets. You are the boss.
 

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That is very strange.. as one time the clutch went to the floor and he said the only fix needed was to re-secure this cable. I definitely can tell a difference when he makes the change as my clutch will be very "tight" when I first get it back from the shop--it has a nice feel of resistance to it and it seems closer to the "neutral" position as I can shift more quickly and easily. Over time, this "tightness" goes away and it feels like the clutch is weak and the pedal needs to be used differently when shifting.

I prefer the tight feeling. I don't know the technical terms for these types of things, so if you know what I'm talking about please let me know so I can request that it be done in a more permanent fashion.




I just called in--they're probably sick of me--and he confirmed that it is an OEM Saab part. It hasn't yet gotten to the shop.. they are still waiting on it. Mechanic said he'll call me back about it being a Viggen clutch.


UMMMMMMMM... MAJOR ISSUE HERE

There is NO and I mean NO cable on your Viggen Clutch...
There is absolutely NO way to "tighten" it...

I bet there was an air bubble and they bled it to make it feel "tight" and didn't really do a damn thing...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
:lol:

I didn't use those words, but I did ask a lot of questions about the clutch. They seem like standup guys.. the clutch in is the proper clutch and it does not need to be replaced so they aren't going to do it.

They quoted me at $600 for the PCV upgrade as well but wouldn't be able to get to that today. I need the car to get to work tomorrow so we've scheduled to get this done next Saturday.

Hopefully after these two surgeries, she'll be riding smoothly for a while.;ol;

UMMMMMMMM... MAJOR ISSUE HERE

There is NO and I mean NO cable on your Viggen Clutch...
There is absolutely NO way to "tighten" it...

I bet there was an air bubble and they bled it to make it feel "tight" and didn't really do a damn thing...
Oh wow. That's a pretty big red flag on the mechanic I bought the car from and have been getting it serviced by since purchase. I will surely ask him about what he has been doing and gauge his response appropriately before driving 3 hours back there to get him to work on it again.

Another personal red flag from him popped up during the last set of repairs.. I had to get two new tires on my rear axle to pass inspection (I had bought new front ones myself a couple of months prior as I had gotten a flat and the other was showing signs of wear). The tires he put on the rear were different tires than the ones I put on the front (the ones on front were the wider Viggen tires--only had to wait a couple of hours for a normal tire shop to locate them--and he put skinnier tires on the back).. he also used two different brands of tires and they each have a different tread. I'm not sure what he was thinking as the tires I got for the front were only $20/tire more. I confronted him about it with my father and he said it was perfectly okay.

Should I get those back tires swapped out for the wider tire like on the front axle or does it not make a difference?

It's in a different shop now, luckily, with a set of mechanics that I've not had experience with. They seem honest, at least, so far. Will the clutch pedal be "tight" after they have made this repair or do I need to request them to bleed something out specifically (and possibly fix the reason it's getting air bubbles in the first place?).
 

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They will bleed the clutch after the slave is installed... it's something that has to be done..

and yes, unless there is another part that is failing the pedal should be "tight" when they are done

On the tires:
Hell yes... swap those out... and NEVER go back to that mechanic again... they sound like they have no clue what they are doing

will the skinnier tires hurt anything? Not really...
but it won't handle the way it should, especially when you rotate them..


will miss matched tires hurt anything? not really..
but they will wear differently and probably cause vibration at some time



$600 for a PCV upgrade?!?!:nono;

saab genuine parts $70 shipped
http://www.eeuroparts.com/Parts/8745/Crank-Case-Vent-PCV-Update-Kit-55561200/

takes about 1-2 hrs it's just a tight fit and if you aren't handy with repairs 2hrs should be right..
all you need is a ratchet with extension and a metric socket set
 

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They quoted me at $600 for the PCV upgrade as well but wouldn't be able to get to that today. I need the car to get to work tomorrow so we've scheduled to get this done next Saturday.
$600 for the PCV upgrade? THAT IS OUTRAGEOUS. The replacement kit can be had online for $60. I believe the Saab bulletin says this job takes 1.5 hours. You could easily do it yourself if you have jack stands and some basic DIY skills.

GenuineSaab has a bunch of info on the PCV update on their website that I recommend you consult. DO NOT pay $600 for this job!

Basically, ditto what rameleg says above. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
We've got an emergency on our hands now.

They said my car would be done last night by 5PM, but called and said they'd need to keep it until morning. I said okay, that's fine.

I just got a call with the owner saying this:

  • Bad news
  • They replaced the "master cylinder" (even though the secretary guy told me all day yesterday that it was the slave) and something still wasn't right so they kept it overnight and kept topping up some fluid but it kept not being right.
  • They now have "no idea" what might be causing it and need to pull the transmission out in order to investigate.
  • He thinks it's "something blowing the valves in my slave cylinder
  • He's estimating another $1,600 charge on top of the $615 I've already paid them for apparently worthless work.
How do I handle this? I don't know what the situation calls for. He said it drives, but that doesn't help me much if something is messing up.


This all seems sketch again. I don't understand why they would just randomly replace some part, then charge me for it, without know it's the cause?
 

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Now wait a damn minute.....

How in the FU***** hell did he know your clutch was good if he didn't have the tranny out...
The master is in a completely different spot... so they flat out lied..

What "problem" are they having now? what's "not right"?

What does he mean "blowing the valves"? is he saying the slave is bad now?

Ask to have you old master cylinder and the box for the new one...(just to be sure they actually replaced it..)

once again.. sounds shady as all hell..

I sent you a PM



FYI: probably how it went:
Guy at Garage to the other mechanic- "Probably the salve cylinder"..."yup"... "Hey jim!" ...."HOLY CRAP that looks hard"... "I don't wanna pull that tranny"... "do you?"..... "ummmm.... nope" ..."
lets do the master first... if that don't fix it .. we will charge him out the ***** to pull that thing and get him for both jobs"...
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Your FYI is almost exactly how it seems.

I asked him why they replaced the master cylinder and he said that it was the part that was "blown" when I brought the car in.
..but, upon driving it they found the clutch works good for a while but eventually sinks back down to the floor.

His new idea is that something inside of the slave is "blown" (what blown means I have no idea).

I called them out on the clutch thing as I specifically called in yesterday and asked how the clutch was (in order to get it replaced) and he said it was perfectly fine. His response to my question was to detail the makeup of a clutch, seemingly to avoid the question, and ensured me that some parts of the clutch were fine. I asked him again and again he seemed to avoid the question and asked me when the last time I got the clutch replaced was.

He said he was looking at it and that he might be able to "lube" some piston up in order to get it working for a bit or that he could find a way to "doctor" it up without having to take it all out. I told him to go with this option (in order for me to be able to drive it to another mechanic and get a second opinion and to allow me time to save up so I can pay the rest of the repairs--if they actually need to be done--in cash).

It does sound shady to me which is more of a reason I need to learn this stuff myself. I can't tell if they're telling me the truth or not anymore. :(
 
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