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Belinda Williamson
11-15-2010, 3:36 PM
Apparently the door lock actuators have died on both front doors of my car. One thing I really didn't notice until this happened is that there is no key entry on the passenger side - something you can bet I'll check for next time I buy a car! I spoke with the service center at the dealership today and the estimated amount to replace the actuators is $800.00. I really don't want to spend that much so near the holidays but this is something I definitely don't want to tackle myself. Any suggestions, other than just live with the problem a while longer? It's not a big issue as typically I'm the only one in the car but when I do have a passenger and it is raining it is a bit of a pain for the passenger. I know that this will require removing the door panels and I'm pretty picky about who does what to my car so I don't want to have just anyone do the repair. Is this best done by the dealer service center or something the average repair shop can do?

Bryan Morgan
11-15-2010, 3:44 PM
Removing panels is easy if you have the right tool and know where the pins are. Are they SURE its the actuators? There are relays that control them. My wife's old Chrysler had problems with the door locks and it was the relays (which happened to be bundled in a module and not replicable separately). Could also be the wiring in the loom between the chassis and the door.

Belinda Williamson
11-15-2010, 3:49 PM
Thanks for the reply Bryan. Best guess at this point is the actuators. I haven't taken the car in, just called to try to get an idea how much the repair was going to cost. The key fob will unlock the trunk and the two rear doors. The master unlock button on the driver's door will unlock the two rear doors. The car is a 2005. It only has 45K miles on it but I guess low mileage has nothing to do with door lock part lifetime. :rolleyes:

Matt Meiser
11-15-2010, 4:03 PM
Unless they went bad at different times, I'd put my money on "other than the actuators."

Jason Roehl
11-15-2010, 5:20 PM
Care to share make and model? If I were a betting man, I would put money on a certain one of the Big 3, and that it is an electrical problem--both front doors are probably on the same circuit.

Dave Lehnert
11-15-2010, 5:37 PM
Don't get me started about dealers. I only use a dealer if the car is under warranty. You would think all dealers would have the best of the best. Not what I have found in my world.
I use a family owned shop that has been around a long time. No way are they cheap but I take the car in and it's fixed right the first time. DONE!

I worked with a lady who had a car that would keep cutting out on her. She took that thing back to the dealer many, many times. They charged her hundreds of dollars each time but never fixed the problem. My brother purchased the car cheap. Called the Auto guy on the radio who runs a auto shop. Said he gets that model car with the same problem all the time. Told him what part needed to replace. Cost $30 and fix the problem forever.

Jerome Stanek
11-15-2010, 5:47 PM
Will they work with the button inside? check the fuse panel and in the book to see if they are on a circuit breaker. Also batteries in the remote

Brian Vaughn
11-15-2010, 5:55 PM
I know it's a dumb question, but have you checked the fuses? My wife complained that her mirror had quit auto-dimming, and I thought it might be something wrong with the mirror itself, until she offhandedly mentioned that the windshield squirters had gone out as well. The light bulb went off, I checked, and sure enough, she'd blown a simple fuse. That's the first place I'd check (Especially if they went out at the same time)

Second thing I'd say is ask around and find a good non-dealer mechanic. They are usually half the price, and a good one can be even less. My dealership could barely change the oil without messing something up (I once had to put a 2' cheater and pull as hard as I could on a socket wrench to get the oil plug to release...this on a plug that's supposed to be torqued to 27 ft-lbs.)

Lastly, what has already been said, pulling a door panel off is not a big deal if you know where the pins are and have the right tools. And the actuator should just be a simple solenoid, two wires, or a wiring harness. But again, that's assuming that it is the mechanism, and not something else wrong.

Brian Elfert
11-15-2010, 7:31 PM
This doesn't fix the current car, but I don't think you'll find a car with key entry on the passenger side unless you get a relatively high end car.

This "cost reduction" has been done on pretty much every low and mid range car out there in today's market. Apparently manufacturers think folks would rather save a few bucks on a car than have a passenger side lock.

It hasn't affected me, but I don't have a wife or significant other and almost never have a passenger.

Belinda Williamson
11-15-2010, 7:50 PM
Unless they went bad at different times, I'd put my money on "other than the actuators."

Passenger side went first, then about a month later the driver's side went.


Care to share make and model? If I were a betting man, I would put money on a certain one of the Big 3, and that it is an electrical problem--both front doors are probably on the same circuit.

Acura TL. AAAHHHH . . . don't . say . electrical . problem. Please!


Will they work with the button inside? check the fuse panel and in the book to see if they are on a circuit breaker. Also batteries in the remote

Won't work with the button inside, but the rear doors do. Haven't checked the fuse panel. Batteries in remote good. Umm . . . dumb question . . . how do I know if a fuse is bad?


I know it's a dumb question, but have you checked the fuses?

Second thing I'd say is ask around and find a good non-dealer mechanic. They are usually half the price, and a good one can be even less. My dealership could barely change the oil without messing something up (I once had to put a 2' cheater and pull as hard as I could on a socket wrench to get the oil plug to release...this on a plug that's supposed to be torqued to 27 ft-lbs.)

Lastly, what has already been said, pulling a door panel off is not a big deal if you know where the pins are and have the right tools. And the actuator should just be a simple solenoid, two wires, or a wiring harness. But again, that's assuming that it is the mechanism, and not something else wrong.

See above regarding fuses. Have a great mechanic that I trust about 90%. (I'm not a real trusting person). I'm a little out of practice on car repairs having not done anything of that sort in quite a while. I had a 97 Maxima that was a great little get around town car. Never, ever had a problem. Sold it last year to a guy that works next door. I miss that car every day. So far the Acura has been hit in the parking lot of the post office, one side creamed in the condo complex parkig lot, and now the door lock problem. I think it is jinxed or something. The Maxima had keyed entry on driver and passenger doors.

Robby Jones
11-15-2010, 8:05 PM
I see problems like this alot. The first two things I look at is the switch itself and then listen to see if you can hear the actuators moving. My suggestion would be to take your car to a auto glass shop. We have lots of practice taking off door panels and working inside doors. My customers tell me that my prices are about half of the dealership and I get my parts from the dealers.

Jason Roehl
11-15-2010, 8:36 PM
I'm not familiar at all with Acuras, but if it does have a fuse panel somewhere (often underneath the steering wheel), you can check the fuses there. Either on the fuse panel itself or in the owner's manual should be a diagram of the panel indicating which fuses go to what circuits. The fuses are likely blade style.

Here is a blog with some relevant pics:

http://kennethfinnegan.blogspot.com/2008/06/troubleshooting-my-car.html

(I don't read it, it just had the pics after a Google search).

There may be a little plastic tool for removing fuses somewhere on the fuse panel cover, but I find those things are usually useless. A pair of needle nose pliers and a light grip work much better for pulling fuses.

Robby has a good point, though. Using either the key fob or the interior switches, push the buttons and listen for something trying to move in the door(s). If you hear "electrical effort", then it's probably the actuators. If not, it's probably elec...uhh...you can't fix it with a hammer. ;)

Myk Rian
11-15-2010, 9:42 PM
Acura? Ugh.

Go to a repair shop, not a dealer.

Jim O'Dell
11-15-2010, 9:43 PM
Most likely, unless Acura does their set up strange, is if the back doors work, the fuses are fine. One fuse should work all the door locks. I'd agree with the actuator being the problem. Now, if you can hear the actuators making noise at each of the front doors, then it could be the rod that the actuator moves to lock/unlock the mechanism. Especially if you've had body damage at each of the doors. It could be the plastic clips that fold over onto the rod and lock down on it is loose/broken allowing the rod to fall out. Easy repair if that is it. Jim.

Ron Jones near Indy
11-15-2010, 9:53 PM
Drive over to Jim's and let him take a look at it. He might even let you take a setter home with you. OK, sorry--I got carried away. Your favorite non-dealer body shop would be a good place to check. They deal with door panels and locks daily.

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 6:54 AM
Thanks all for the helpful thoughts and suggestions. I should have mentioned earlier, there is no sound of anything happening or attempting to happen with either the fob or the interior button.

I didn't think about a glass shop and I have a good friend who is the VP of one of the regional glass companies. I know they do windshields so I'll get in touch with him. I'll also get in touch with the shop I use for oil changes and general service and see if they have a recommendation for a body shop.

Jim, you wouldn't happen to be headed to Savannah any time soon would you? :)

Oh, and I'll also check the fuses just in case.

Just a side note, I wish someone locally offered a basic "cars for idiots" class. I know it wouldn't cover everything for every car but as least I would have a little more confidence when talking to people in service centers and repair shops. :(

Jim Rimmer
11-16-2010, 10:03 AM
Most likely, unless Acura does their set up strange, is if the back doors work, the fuses are fine. One fuse should work all the door locks. I'd agree with the actuator being the problem. Now, if you can hear the actuators making noise at each of the front doors, then it could be the rod that the actuator moves to lock/unlock the mechanism. Especially if you've had body damage at each of the doors. It could be the plastic clips that fold over onto the rod and lock down on it is loose/broken allowing the rod to fall out. Easy repair if that is it. Jim.
I've pretty much quit working on cars since the electronics have gotten so complex but I tend to agree with Jim. A couple of bangs on the sides of the car and now the locks don't work? Lots of plastic pieces in there and maybe something broke. Maybe the glass shop can find it.

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 10:42 AM
I've pretty much quit working on cars since the electronics have gotten so complex but I tend to agree with Jim. A couple of bangs on the sides of the car and now the locks don't work? Lots of plastic pieces in there and maybe something broke. Maybe the glass shop can find it.

The post office parking lot was a tiny bump that hardly left any damage to the rear bumper. The passenger side door lock stopped working about two weeks prior to that side getting creamed. As far as I know there has never been any damage to the driver's side. If I manage to get it repaired any time soon I'll let y'all know the final diagnosis. :)

Rick Prosser
11-16-2010, 10:48 AM
I have a 2005 Dodge caravan, and randomly - the locks quit working in a door or two. I have to "reset" the system to get everything working again. The reset involves removing the OID fuse (I think?) for 10-20 sec and re-inserting.

It happens once or twice a year, so I have to search for the instructions each time...

Maybe there is something similar for your car that could work?

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 10:54 AM
Thanks Rick. I'll check this out, probably over the weekend.

Jeff Monson
11-16-2010, 11:14 AM
Belinda,

What model and what year do you have? My wife has an Acura and we have had 3 previous to this one. We also work on quite a few at our shop.
If the rear locks work, I'd suspect you have bad actuators in the front. I can get you a good idea of what it would cost.

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 11:27 AM
Belinda,

What model and what year do you have? My wife has an Acura and we have had 3 previous to this one. We also work on quite a few at our shop.
If the rear locks work, I'd suspect you have bad actuators in the front. I can get you a good idea of what it would cost.

2005 TL. Thanks!

Jeff Monson
11-16-2010, 12:53 PM
Belinda,

The actuators are $31.00 each, the labor is .8 (8 tenths of an hour) each. So depending on the shop rate per hour this is not a real expensive job. It would be 194.33 with tax at my shop, for both installed. It appears failure rate is fairly high. 1 fuse controls the lock system...so if the rear locks are functional then the fuse cannot be the problem. I'd put a 95% chance the actuators are bad.

Rich Stewart
11-16-2010, 1:29 PM
Seems like a pretty common problem.

http://tsx.acurazine.com/forums/showthread.php?t=678705

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 1:42 PM
Belinda,

The actuators are $31.00 each, the labor is .8 (8 tenths of an hour) each. So depending on the shop rate per hour this is not a real expensive job. It would be 194.33 with tax at my shop, for both installed. It appears failure rate is fairly high. 1 fuse controls the lock system...so if the rear locks are functional then the fuse cannot be the problem. I'd put a 95% chance the actuators are bad.

Geez Louise! For the $800 I was quoted locally I could almost pay you to come down here and do the work! Thanks for the info.

Rich Stewart
11-16-2010, 1:45 PM
Here is a step-by-step instruction. Maybe if you know someone who is handy or you are feeling brave...
http://www.acura-cl.com/forums/showthread.php?t=749670

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 1:47 PM
Seems like a pretty common problem.

http://tsx.acurazine.com/forums/showthread.php?t=678705

Interesting Rich. It seems to be a problem mainly with the TSX but I didn't take time to read the entire list - I'll try to do that tonight. I think this car knows that I secretly didn't want it, but got it anyway. I don't have a relationship with this car as I have had with others. I couldn't even think of a good name for it and ended up just calling it Tommy Lee.

Warren Johnson
11-16-2010, 2:40 PM
You might try a locksmith. They have the tool to remove the door panel.

Belinda Williamson
11-16-2010, 3:25 PM
Here is a step-by-step instruction. Maybe if you know someone who is handy or you are feeling brave...
http://www.acura-cl.com/forums/showthread.php?t=749670


Read through the step by step, and the posts by the lady who then couldn't open the driver's side door but was finally succesful. I don't think I'm up to this on my own. I'm just going to have to call in a favor or two.

Bryan Morgan
11-16-2010, 3:53 PM
Seems like a pretty common problem.

http://tsx.acurazine.com/forums/showthread.php?t=678705


How could so many have that issue? Does it drain water through the door like Mazda? Maybe stuff is getting wet and shorting or rusting out?

Mike Dodson
11-16-2010, 7:10 PM
As someone else suggested auto glass companies would be a good source for properly removing a door panel.
You might also want to try a car stereo installer. They would normally have the tools and experience to remove and reinstall a door panel with out doing the butcher job that most dealerships will do. I would think with the economy the way it is a car stereo place would love to have that simple of repair job.
There are plenty of internet sellers that will have actuators for much less than the dealership.

Don Alexander
11-16-2010, 11:59 PM
pretty sure there already is a "cars for idiots" class its called drivers ed :D

since its required here to get a license apparently there is a large number of idiots who "passed" ??? go figure

Belinda Williamson
11-17-2010, 6:52 AM
pretty sure there already is a "cars for idiots" class its called drivers ed :D

since its required here to get a license apparently there is a large number of idiots who "passed" ??? go figure

Well, Don, way back when I took driver's ed the instructor basically taught me how to drive, and the rules of the road. I can't seem to recall there being a class dedicated to how not to be intimidated by a service tech, speaking as a female here, or a class on discussing what to call the thingamabob that unlocks my door for me. Guess we'uns here in GA just didn't get the same level of edumacation that you'ns got up there in NC.:D

Jim O'Dell
11-17-2010, 8:23 PM
Jim, you wouldn't happen to be headed to Savannah any time soon would you? :)


Sorry, only time I was that direction was in 1999 when we drove to Tallahassee FL for the Irish Setter National Specialty. (You knew it had to be for the dogs, didn't ya?? :D ) Ever driven 18 hours with a female dog in heat with her brother in the crate next to her???? :eek::eek::eek: Jim.

Belinda Williamson
11-18-2010, 7:12 AM
Sorry, only time I was that direction was in 1999 when we drove to Tallahassee FL for the Irish Setter National Specialty. (You knew it had to be for the dogs, didn't ya?? :D ) Ever driven 18 hours with a female dog in heat with her brother in the crate next to her???? :eek::eek::eek: Jim.

No . . . can't say that I have, but I did drive 8 hours to Panama City with a couple of friends for Spring Break once. As I recall there was at least one female dog in the car, but no brothers. :D

Belinda Williamson
11-18-2010, 12:59 PM
So far I've contacted three Acura service departments, the second one gave me an estimate of $450, and the third an estimate of $400. I thought about this a bit and decided to write a letter to Acura Client Services and request that they consider replacing the parts under warranty, even though from a time perspective the warranty has expired, as failure of the actuators seems to be such a common problem. The worst that can happen is they say no.

Bryan Morgan
11-18-2010, 3:27 PM
So far I've contacted three Acura service departments, the second one gave me an estimate of $450, and the third an estimate of $400. I thought about this a bit and decided to write a letter to Acura Client Services and request that they consider replacing the parts under warranty, even though from a time perspective the warranty has expired, as failure of the actuators seems to be such a common problem. The worst that can happen is they say no.

Ask if there is a TSB about them. You can use that as leverage for your argument.

Belinda Williamson
11-18-2010, 4:11 PM
Thanks Bryan!!! I did a quick search and there is one TSB added in December of 2005 that isn't exactly the same problem but is regarding doors locking by themselves or cycling twice. I have experienced both. I never would have thought to do this on my own. I Love This Place! Thanks again.

Don Alexander
11-18-2010, 11:09 PM
hehe well i'm a transplant so the wonderful edumacation here in NC missed me :D

drivers ed is actually a good thing on the whole i was trying to be funny uhhhhh guess its obvious why i'm not a comedian hey? :D:D

Callan Campbell
11-19-2010, 11:16 AM
First, sorry to hear about your car troubles. Since I make my living solving them , here's some additional info for you. Most door lock actuators are now part of the door latch itself for modern vehicles. The car manufs. found it was easier, and smaller, to put the very small motors inside the door latches. Probably cheaper too.:p
So, unless you have a different set-up with the actuator mounted outside of the latch like in the past, you'll possibly need new door latches, which gives you the new actuators too. Have someone make sure that the wiring going to the actuators is intact, and that you don't have a corroded splice or connector that's taking out the power, or ground ,or signal wire to the doors. That means someone who knows the vehicle, and has access to a wiring diagram of your vehicle.
As for not having a door lock cylinder to the passenger side, join the club of many other vehicle owners. This was done to save money on lock cylinders, and also in the name of Anti-Car Jacking. Having a latch AND a door lock cylinder at the door handle for both front doors on a modern vehicle is also getting rare. Nowdays you're lucky if the drivers door lock cylinder isn't hidden under a handle cover since everyone uses their remotes to get in and out of a vehicle instead of a key. Someday in the not too distant future a kid will look at their parent who's holding a car key to the family's older car and ask "whats that". They REALLY are becoming obsolete for some determined young designers who seem keen on not using them except in a cryptic, hidden fashion. Very strange
Hope you get it worked out.:)

Callan Campbell
11-19-2010, 11:37 AM
Belinda,

The actuators are $31.00 each, the labor is .8 (8 tenths of an hour) each. So depending on the shop rate per hour this is not a real expensive job. It would be 194.33 with tax at my shop, for both installed. It appears failure rate is fairly high. 1 fuse controls the lock system...so if the rear locks are functional then the fuse cannot be the problem. I'd put a 95% chance the actuators are bad.
Jeff, are the actuators still mounted outside the door latch like in the past? I didn't think anyone was still doing that on a late model car. I only see "all-in-one" door latches that house the whole works inside the latch. Thanks for the info.

Belinda Williamson
11-19-2010, 2:01 PM
First, sorry to hear about your car troubles. Since I make my living solving them , here's some additional info for you. Most door lock actuators are now part of the door latch itself for modern vehicles. The car manufs. found it was easier, and smaller, to put the very small motors inside the door latches. Probably cheaper too.:p
So, unless you have a different set-up with the actuator mounted outside of the latch like in the past, you'll possibly need new door latches, which gives you the new actuators too. Have someone make sure that the wiring going to the actuators is intact, and that you don't have a corroded splice or connector that's taking out the power, or ground ,or signal wire to the doors. That means someone who knows the vehicle, and has access to a wiring diagram of your vehicle.
As for not having a door lock cylinder to the passenger side, join the club of many other vehicle owners. This was done to save money on lock cylinders, and also in the name of Anti-Car Jacking. Have two master latches and the lock cylinder at the door handle for both front doors on a modern vehicle is also getting rare.
Hope you get it worked out.:)

Thanks Callan. I will probably end up going with a dealer repair. No offense to any service people here but I want to have someone to complain to if the repair isn't done properly. It's had to do that with a glass company, etc. Having had one lemon Corvette, and a second with multiple problems, I find that the dealer service centers give me a better target for my anger!:D Actually, I'm not that much of a terrible customer, I just had really bad experiences with people referring to me as "missy" and thinking I was totally stupid - all at the same dealership. For example, I bought a brand new Vette and the first time it rained I opened the door the next morning to find water standing in the floorboard. I called the dealership and the first question I was asked was if I had the top in or out during the rain. Now maybe a lot of people leave the top out of their car and complain when it gets wet, I don't know, but it didn't set a good initial tone for a very long repair relationship.

Bryan Morgan
11-19-2010, 4:22 PM
Thanks Bryan!!! I did a quick search and there is one TSB added in December of 2005 that isn't exactly the same problem but is regarding doors locking by themselves or cycling twice. I have experienced both. I never would have thought to do this on my own. I Love This Place! Thanks again.

No problem. I owned a Chrylser for awhile so I am intimately familiar with TSBs and recall notices. :p TSBs generally aren't fixed for free like recall notices but they make great ammunition for bargaining.

Jeff Monson
11-19-2010, 4:54 PM
Jeff, are the actuators still mounted outside the door latch like in the past? I didn't think anyone was still doing that on a late model car. I only see "all-in-one" door latches that house the whole works inside the latch. Thanks for the info.

Callan, you are absolutely correct, most mfgs. are implementing the actuator into the latch, making for one very expensive actuator. Luckily for Belinda this Acura has them available seperatly and not part of the latch. It appears to be attached directly to the latch. Funny though the rear actuators are $110.00 each! Must be part of the latch in the rear doors.

Belinda Williamson
11-20-2010, 7:56 AM
Funny though the rear actuators are $110.00 each! Must be part of the latch in the rear doors.

Thanks for that happy little bit of news, Jeff! LOL . . . that will probably hit next Christmas. :D

Not looking forward to Thanksgiving when I go to visit the parents. My dad will insist on paying for the front lock repairs and I will refuse and then we will argue about it for the entire day. :( He won't understand that it's not that I don't have the money, I don't want to spend the money. There's a big difference. I unlocked car doors manually for a lot more years than I have unlocked them remotely. I suppose I should consider it a safety issue as when I have my hands full it is much faster to use the remote. On the other hand, I still have to stuff all my bags in the trunk and then unlock the driver's door. Decisions, decisions. . .

David G Baker
11-20-2010, 5:01 PM
Belinda,
Nothing says you have to let your Dad know about the door lock issue. What he doesn't know won't spoil your holiday.
We are headed your way for Thanksgiving and will spend the week in the Tennga, GA area with SWMBO's family. Looks like Michigan will be having a white Thanksgiving so getting out of town will help us avoid the nasty weather.
Good luck with your lock dilemma.

Caspar Hauser
11-21-2010, 8:22 AM
...... I can't seem to recall there being a class dedicated to how not to be intimidated by a service tech, speaking as a female here, or a class on discussing what to call the thingamabob that unlocks my door for me.... .:D

I used to live near Brattleboro Vt, a local garage owner/mechanic (by happenstance the one we used) used to give a short course of classes for women only. He taught stuff like how to change a tyre, oil etc, but also how a car works, nomenclature and how not to be intimidated or "Missy'd" by mechanics or dealerships.

I sometimes wish I could have attended.

CH

Belinda Williamson
11-21-2010, 8:57 AM
Belinda,
Nothing says you have to let your Dad know about the door lock issue. What he doesn't know won't spoil your holiday.
We are headed your way for Thanksgiving and will spend the week in the Tennga, GA area with SWMBO's family. Looks like Michigan will be having a white Thanksgiving so getting out of town will help us avoid the nasty weather.
Good luck with your lock dilemma.

Nothing says he has to know, but he will. If I manage to keep it a secret all day he will know when he walks me to the car when I leave. I hope you enjoy your trip to Georiga. Here in south Georgia we are just getting fall color to the trees. I'm not sure where Tennga is, but I'll look it up.


I used to live near Brattleboro Vt, a local garage owner/mechanic (by happenstance the one we used) used to give a short course of classes for women only. He taught stuff like how to change a tyre, oil etc, but also how a car works, nomenclature and how not to be intimidated or "Missy'd" by mechanics or dealerships.

I sometimes wish I could have attended.

CH

Caspar, I never thought about it but there may be a class like that available around here. I think I'll mention it to my regular repair shop, as it is a husband/wife team, and see if they would consider having a class. I'm not nearly as intimidated as I was way back when since I now get "m'aam" instead of "missy", and I've perfected the "mama" look. :)

Scott Shepherd
11-21-2010, 9:14 AM
Dad's need to feel needed by their kids, no matter what the age. If he wants to fix it, let him. It's his way of taking care of his little girl :) It's not a hand out, it's him showing his love for you, albeit mechanically through fixing your car :)

Belinda Williamson
11-21-2010, 9:26 AM
Dad's need to feel needed by their kids, no matter what the age. If he wants to fix it, let him. It's his way of taking care of his little girl :) It's not a hand out, it's him showing his love for you, albeit mechanically through fixing your car :)

It's all your fault that I am now thinking this morning and seeing the irony in all of this. I have spent many years convincing my daddy that I don't need to be "taken care of" by him, and that I am perfectly capable of taking care of myself. So, what do I do? I turn to all of you at SMC for help. :o I think I'll just go bury my head in the sand now and ignore the blatantly obvious.

David G Baker
11-21-2010, 12:02 PM
Belinda,
I agree with Scott. I didn't think of the situation that way, great answer and advice.
Tennga is just over the Tennessee line into Georgia.
Our Fall color is long gone, the trees are bare and snow is on the way.
Happy Thanksgiving.

Belinda Williamson
03-09-2011, 9:47 AM
Just thought I'd let you all know the final resolution. Door lock actuators are the problem. Acura is going to cover the cost to replace ($530.00) under a good will warranty. Here's the catch, I have to pay for them to perform the 45,000 mile service. I had this done by my mechanic but because it wasn't done by an Acura dealership it doesn't count as "maintaining the car to Acura standards". I guess this is best I can hope for, and I feel that this is pretty fair.

Matt Meiser
03-09-2011, 10:01 AM
I'm certainly no lawyer but I'd be inclined to believe that would be illegal under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. The gist of that part that I think would apply is that they can't require you to use their maintenance parts to keep your warranty unless they provide them at no cost to you. It keeps them from denying warranty claims because you didn't use an OEM oil filter for example. Its commonly cited in car magazines because dealers have tried to use the excuse that someone installed aftermarket accessories to deny all warranty claims, even in cases where there could be no corellation between the claim and the accessory (i.e. suspension failure when someone installed an aftermarket air filter.)

David Weaver
03-09-2011, 10:12 AM
How much does a 45,000 mi service cost?

Most of the stuff on those service lists is garbage if you have any inclination at all with cars. there's a lot of "check" and not much "do" on them.

Belinda Williamson
03-09-2011, 10:35 AM
I'm certainly no lawyer but I'd be inclined to believe that would be illegal under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. The gist of that part that I think would apply is that they can't require you to use their maintenance parts to keep your warranty unless they provide them at no cost to you. It keeps them from denying warranty claims because you didn't use an OEM oil filter for example. Its commonly cited in car magazines because dealers have tried to use the excuse that someone installed aftermarket accessories to deny all warranty claims, even in cases where there could be no corellation between the claim and the accessory (i.e. suspension failure when someone installed an aftermarket air filter.)

Matt, I guess their way around this is that the parts are out of warranty time-wise. Because the lock actuators failed with relatively low mileage on the car this is a "good will" gesture on their part, not a true warranty repair.


How much does a 45,000 mi service cost?

Most of the stuff on those service lists is garbage if you have any inclination at all with cars. there's a lot of "check" and not much "do" on them.

Front brake pads, 45,000 mi service, brake fluid flush - $670.00. Yeah, basically I'm getting the drive shaft (so to speak) but I'm tired of arguing with them and just want the locks fixed. After I posted I checked my service records and I had the 30,000 mile service done by my regular mechanic. The car is just now due for the 45,000 mile service, so I need to do that anyway.

David Weaver
03-09-2011, 11:04 AM
Well, if you really needed the front pads, I'm sure they would've charged you $200 for them, anyway. For my VW, they want about that (or did a few years ago), and my VW dealer is really proud of their work. So proud that they like to suggest doing it earlier than it needs to be done by a wide margin and then charging more than book rate for time.

I got an OEM kit to do all of the pads for about $50 IIRC.

Service is where the dealer makes money now that people can walk in the door with invoice price for a car, so it's not likely to change.

The discount service places (like pep-boys) who used to be a lot cheaper figured out that they can tell you that they'll guarantee to be 10% less than dealer service and call that a discount, even though it's far more than they used to charge.

So, you pays what you pay, I guess, if you don't do the work yourself. The small shops that do a full range of work are disappearing.

Joe Angrisani
03-09-2011, 12:18 PM
So, you pays what you pay, I guess, if you don't do the work yourself. The small shops that do a full range of work are disappearing.

Small shops are certainly disappearing. We, collectively, want the WalMart approach in everything, so "we" have done it to ourselves. Chain brake places, chain oil places, chain tranny places, big expensive advertising budgets, cheap aftermarket parts.

As a second comment, many people can "do the work yourself", but keep in mind that slapping in a set of pads is not a brake job. Most shadetree mechanics skip just about all the important steps, then say "I did my ______ for $50."

Pat Germain
03-09-2011, 5:28 PM
Belinda, it sounds like you're paying the Acura dealer a bit more for your 45,000 mile service than you would with your mechanic. But you're getting your locks fixed to boot. So, I'm thinking it's best to see it as all coming out as a wash. :)

Bryan Morgan
03-10-2011, 12:45 AM
Well, if you really needed the front pads, I'm sure they would've charged you $200 for them, anyway.

Man thats expensive. I just did my 4 disc brakes with upgraded/street performance parts (Hawk pads, Centric rotors...not super fancy but better than stock) and only paid $350 for parts. This was pads, rotors, and complete synthetic fluid flush. Of course I do all the labor myself... took all day but then I take my sweet time and clean off everything, clean and lube the caliper pins, clean all the crust from the ABS system and hub assemblies.... basically try to make it as new as possible. I am rewarded for my labor by having a car that actually stops and having extremely smooth stops and no squeeks. I don't trust any of these clod "mechanics" nowdays. My wife got a recall notice for her car and I'm half tempted to somehow force them to give me the parts and just do it myself. None of this stuff is overly difficult.

Belinda Williamson
03-10-2011, 6:50 AM
Belinda, it sounds like you're paying the Acura dealer a bit more for your 45,000 mile service than you would with your mechanic. But you're getting your locks fixed to boot. So, I'm thinking it's best to see it as all coming out as a wash. :)

I agree, Pat.


Man thats expensive. I just did my 4 disc brakes with upgraded/street performance parts (Hawk pads, Centric rotors...not super fancy but better than stock) and only paid $350 for parts. This was pads, rotors, and complete synthetic fluid flush. Of course I do all the labor myself... took all day but then I take my sweet time and clean off everything, clean and lube the caliper pins, clean all the crust from the ABS system and hub assemblies.... basically try to make it as new as possible. I am rewarded for my labor by having a car that actually stops and having extremely smooth stops and no squeeks. I don't trust any of these clod "mechanics" nowdays. My wife got a recall notice for her car and I'm half tempted to somehow force them to give me the parts and just do it myself. None of this stuff is overly difficult.

I really trust my mechanic. He and his wife own the shop and are really good people. Since we have our company trucks serviced there and are regular customers they are pretty good with their pricing. I wanted the door locks taken care of by the dealer in case I have issues with them in the future. I used to do a lot of my car maintenance but I'm just not up to it any more.

Bryan Morgan
03-10-2011, 10:39 PM
I really trust my mechanic. He and his wife own the shop and are really good people. Since we have our company trucks serviced there and are regular customers they are pretty good with their pricing. I wanted the door locks taken care of by the dealer in case I have issues with them in the future. I used to do a lot of my car maintenance but I'm just not up to it any more.

We used to have a company mechanic too. Seemed like he did a good job until we found out he was doing some really shady stuff and sold off a bunch of our vehicles he didn't even own. He's in jail now... I don't mean to say there aren't any trustworthy mechanics out there, but I have yet to meet one. :)

Tim Livingston
03-10-2011, 11:10 PM
Front brake pads, 45,000 mi service, brake fluid flush - $670.00. Yeah, basically I'm getting the drive shaft (so to speak) but I'm tired of arguing with them and just want the locks fixed. After I posted I checked my service records and I had the 30,000 mile service done by my regular mechanic. The car is just now due for the 45,000 mile service, so I need to do that anyway.

I would tell them to go scratch a fence post! Front brake pads are $15-20 and brake fluid is cheap. I would go to a body shop and pay them half of what the dealer wants to fix your door locks. You know that part you mentioned about trusting your mechanic 90%. Well this dealer would rate a 0% in my book.

I recently got new tires, at the time they told me I needed new brakes on the rear of my car which I knew and planned to do myself. A week later they started grinding and I was working 70-80 hours a week so I called and asked how much? They said if I needed calipers $850! I asked how much without calipers and they said $500. I told him no thanks and that I would never bother him again. A few days later I wrote the corporate office (tire company chain) and told them I would never buy tires from them again as I thought they were thieves.

I did the job myself including calipers for $200.