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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hallo,
I recently had the turbo go on my 1999 9-5. It`s a low pressure model. As soon as I witnessed smoke I pulled over and had the car transported to an independent saab dealer in Bristol. They called me later and said the turbo was shot and it would cost £567 inc vat to fit a `good used` unit with a 6 month warranty on it. I told them to go ahead, and was called again the following day by the `sales manager` who informed me that I needed a new engine as the bottom end was `banging its` head off`. I disputed this, telling him that the car was as quiet as a mouse right up until it was picked up by the recovery service, and I never noticed any noise. He also said the shaft in the turbo had actually snapped, and proceeded to tell me what happens when a turbo goes. `All the oil gets sucked out of the engine and the sump, knackering your crank, it`s probably bent now`. I visited the garage and spent about 40 minutes arguing with this bloke and getting nowhere, cos he`s the expert and he says he `gets this all the time, we`ll buy the car off you for salvage if you can`t afford the bill`! The car is still with them as I`m considering taking the place to court. The other garage which does all my mot work on my classic car has an ex-employee of theirs who told me their usual practice is to fit a new turbo, put no oil in, start the car and put their foot to the floor, and if the bottom end goes it`s tough!! Any opinions/ideas greatly received.

Drew
 

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I'm not sure I do believe him. When my Turbo went on my 2001 9-5 SE I was driving on the highway on my way home, I started to blow alot of white smoke. When i pulled over about 2 miles after i saw the smoke I had it taking to my local mech and i blew my turbo. But my Engine was absolutely fine. I got lucky because I had an extra turbo from a friends car. I would definitely find out way more before that, and see if it would have been something they caused and are trying to put it off on the turbo going. Which in that case they should be paying for a new engine.

I hope this helps, I'll look into the problem a little more and let you know what I find out.
 

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i wouldn't believe this shop either. A turbo blowing CAN cause motor failure, although that is really only plausible with prolonged driving w/ a completely shot turbo. In other words, if the motor becomes starved of oil as a result of it passing through the turbocharger, YES, the motor can fail.

In your case, I sincerely doubt you blew the motor, especially if you took it in for the repair virtually right after you saw smoke. Thats B.S. if they pulled some trick like that to make the motor go bust. I say look into taking them to court and suing them for all they are worth :evil:.

Good luck though, i've ALWAYS hated mechanics for this reason. There is no real way for the average person to know if a place is legit or not. I just dont trust mechanics in general. They are only there for the purpose of making money.
 

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I agree with IVANWAKEUP, the STEALERS are really doing a number on you. I looked into it from different forums, and it seems like it's possible but unlikely seeing how quick you brought it to the mech. Now if your turbo blew and you drove say 50 miles TO your mech then there might be a chance of damage. I drove 2+ miles with a blown turbo and nothing happened to my engine. (luckly) lol

Definitely read up a little more, and if you can find a good article or an official document, take it to them. I would def bust their asses about your car being in great condition prior to your turbo going. There is tons of great resources on this site. A few of us are Mechs ourselves, and others just do A LOT of car work.


Ask kermit or sticky to see if they can help you with finding some sort of article you can bring to your mech. Good luck it's always hard for us to deal with mechs like that, because they might know more about the car at the given moment.
 

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Bottom end failure is usually as a result of oil starvation via the sump pickup screen. If the engine wasn't knocking prior to going in then i doubt the turbo has caused it. Its quite common for Renault turbo diesels have the turbo fail, this causes the turbo to run on engine oil, increasing in speed constantly till the block over-revs and detonates. I've never known this happen on a Saab though.
 

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It's your car, start it up to listen to it and ask to see the old turbo for yourself. If they did the work without asking you first, you are by no means obligated to pay for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've never known this happen on a Saab though.
Seriously?! It`s a pity you don`t live here, you could be my expert witness in small-claims court. Apparently that`s what I`ll need to convince any court that the garage did anything untoward with my car. I basically have no way of proving that they made the bottom end go. I keep hearing and reading how tough Saab bottom ends are, yet this dude says it only takes a couple of minutes without oil to wreck your crank. He even said that it could have broke off a bit of a piston and that`s what the noise is!? I feel like I know he`s trying to pull a fast one, especially with what I`ve heard about his place since taking it there. I haven`t paid him a penny as yet, but I`m due to pay for the turbo at the end of the month. The ex-employee of his has offered to look at it when I get it and see what damage there is, he thinks I may just get away with fitting new crank bearing shells? Many thanks for all your replies folks. Watch this space for updates.

Drew
 

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If you do take this to small claims court, print out these forums with the permission of the posters of course, and any other article you can so you can use them in court. Small claim courts appreciate individuals who take their time to research, because it's way to common for mech to pull one over on the public.
 

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Drew- exactly what was the last thing you remember doing when you saw all the smoke exit the tailpipe? Did you shut the car off immediately or continue driving? Even then, you'd have to go a long enough distance to DRAIN your motor of OIL, and at a full 4 quarts, thats a pertty long ways.

There is no WAY your motor would become damaged if you adressed the problem immediately. the only thing i could think of is that it was damaged beforehand by something else, and you didn't know it. But if the car had thrown a rod, TRUST me, you would know that.
 

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an ex-employee of theirs who told me their usual practice is to fit a new turbo, put no oil in, start the car and put their foot to the floor, and if the bottom end goes it`s tough!!Drew

This bit stumps me..............why would they do this?
 

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This bit stumps me..............why would they do this?
my guess would be to do what it sounds like they are doing to the OP in this case, they take out the turbo and have no oil, start up the car and purposefully blow the motor, and then tell the client that their turbo had caused it, and that they'll need to put a new motor in.
 

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my guess would be to do what it sounds like they are doing to the OP in this case, they take out the turbo and have no oil, start up the car and purposefully blow the motor, and then tell the client that their turbo had caused it, and that they'll need to put a new motor in.

Thats mad, and would never work......... its a 1999 car, why on earth do they think someone would pay them to put a new engine in - way too risky, the owner could just say NO.

And how would changing the turbo drain the engine oil?
 

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, but I`m due to pay for the turbo at the end of the month. Drew
If they say the first turbo blew the engine, why would they fit this (expensive used one) and then tell you the engine has blown.....?

Why would you now pay for the used turbo anyway?

MAybe we need a UK Saabcentral Cruise to this garage, for a chat!
 

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Thats mad, and would never work......... its a 1999 car, why on earth do they think someone would pay them to put a new engine in - way too risky, the owner could just say NO.

And how would changing the turbo drain the engine oil?
no no, they just "NEGLECT" to fill it up with oil is what i would think (after draining the oil in there by whatever means they use, of course). Just dont put any oil in then run it dry until the motor goes. They could speed that up tenfold by running it at redline with no oil :eek:.

I wouldn't think it would be too risky though, because even if the owner said NO to paying for a new motor, they just say that they will buy the car for scrap value and turn a profit some other way. Or even if the owner didn't sell it to them, all they really lost was a few hours labor by removing the turbo.
 

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But it sounds like they are still charging for the (new /used) turbo they diagnosed as the problem....... I just dont get it :nono;
 

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But it sounds like they are still charging for the (new /used) turbo they diagnosed as the problem....... I just dont get it :nono;
Exactly. either way, it seems like the OP is bound to pay a lot of unfair charges. Mechanics are very frustrating, especially if you know nothing about them when going in for a fix :evil:
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Drew- exactly what was the last thing you remember doing when you saw all the smoke exit the tailpipe?
I drove about another 200 yards to find a place to stop and called for recovery. There is a difference of 2 miles showing on the odometer from pick up time, to the time they called me to tell the bad news, yet they claim not to have `driven` the car?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
This bit stumps me..............why would they do this?
I reckon they`re hoping I won`t pay for the recon engine they want to fit, approx £900, so they could hope I`d let them have the car for salvage costs. Which they mentioned very early on in our `discussion`. Apparently they `do it all the time with customers who can`t afford stuff`. If you`d been there you`d see what I mean, the whole thing is dodgy and highly suspect. I was/am prepared to pay for the turbo, but I won`t be giving the place another penny after that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thats mad, and would never work......... its a 1999 car, why on earth do they think someone would pay them to put a new engine in - way too risky, the owner could just say NO.

And how would changing the turbo drain the engine oil?
Exactly. I won`t be letting them put a new engine in, which is what they`re hoping for, then I`ll let them have the car at salvage cost. The place is a professional rip-off joint.
Changing the turbo hasn`t drained the engine oil. They`re claiming that the car had been driven after the turbo packed in and sucked all the oil from the sump, wasting the bottom end.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If they say the first turbo blew the engine, why would they fit this (expensive used one) and then tell you the engine has blown.....?

Why would you now pay for the used turbo anyway?

MAybe we need a UK Saabcentral Cruise to this garage, for a chat!
They`re claiming to have changed the blown turbo without driving or starting the car, until they`d fitted a replacement. Then when they had it fitted, they started the car to get the oil out of the exhaust, and the bottom end is now banging it`s head off. This is common practice apparently.?????
 
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