Surprised by the cost of the 90,000 mile maintenance

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting' started by jameslang, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. jameslang

    jameslang New Member

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    Hi all,

    I am new to the forum. I have a 2011 Prius 4 that I bought new in April 2011. I took my car to the dealership for the 90,000 mile maintenance 2 days ago. I know everything's a lot more expensive at the dealership, but I was surprised they wanted $1,100. I know nothing about cars and had no idea what's supposed to be included in a 90,000 mile maintenance, so I didn't feel like I had a choice. I looked at the list of services and had no idea what a lot of them were for and couldn't tell how easy/difficult they were.

    If you're interested in what's included in the service, I have attached the list. By the way, I live in the San Francisco bay area, so I imagine the labor cost is higher, but they charged $700+ for labor and then $300+ for parts.The guy told me every 90,000 miles would be a major service, after that it'll be minor and intermediate services again until I hit 180,000 miles. I bought a 5 year maintenance when I bought the car so I didn't pay for maintenance until 2016, then I had 3 services which costed me between $340 and $500.

    I think I was ripped off and would like to use a new mechanic next time. I need to learn more about maintenance though. I have a couple questions:

    1. Where can I get a list of services included in each type of maintenance (minor, intermediate, major) so that I can tell the new mechanic what I need?
    2. Can I do some of these easily by myself though I have never worked on cars?

    Please help.

    Thanks,
    James
     

    Attached Files:

  2. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    Read your owners manual. There is a chart toward the back that will show you what needs to be done
    and when. And you can do all of it yourself.
     
  3. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Wow, looks like they hosed you pretty good. Yep, there’s a list of essential service demands in the owners’ manual. You can get free PDFs from Toyota if you bought your car secondhand without manuals, or if you’ve separated them from the car.
     
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    welcome!

    i'm sorry to see that you were taken advantage of by an unscrupulous dealer.

    log in to the toyota owners website for the warranty and maintenance guide, if you can't find the one that came with your car.

    unfortunately, 90k is not a major service, but it doesn't hurt do do some things early.

    the easiest things do do yourself are the air and cabin filters. you can find lots of videos on youtube, and check out member @NutzAboutBolts videos specifically.

    the fuel system cleaner may or may not help

    the brake fluid change was good.

    the crankcase service was probably a rip off

    injection and throttle body probably a good idea

    fuel system drier and coolant conditioners are a ripoff

    mass air flow sensor a good idea.

    what you're going to need, before you possibly blow a head gasket is a complete egr circuit cleaning, which is not in the manual
    and a tranny fluid replacement would also be a good idea

    spend some time here before proceeding, and learn about your car. taking good care of it now will lead to less future problems if you intend to keep it.

    looking at my own schedule, you have the major services coming at:

    100k; replace engine and inverter coolant.

    120k; replace spark plugs

    all the best!(y)
     
    #4 bisco, Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  5. RRxing

    RRxing Senior Member

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    From the Maintenance Guide:
    Screen Shot 2019-09-02 at 8.01.11 AM.png
     
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  6. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    Greetings!
    Welcome Aboard!!

    That's all pretty much been covered above.
    To those that follow:

    Remember.
    You ALWAYS have the right to choose!
    Especially if you drive the car TO a mechanic....meaning you can always drive AWAY from a mechanic.

    Don't feel too bad.
    You have a 9 year old car that you haven't really had to put a lot of money into that is still saving you a lot...especially in taxes, insurance, and gas.

    Also...asked and answered.

    You're good for another year given your past mileages.

    1. Check your oil every month.
    No.
    Really....your car is about 9 years old. That's when they start experimenting with drinking and smoking. Also consider clubbing down to a 5,000 mile oil change interval.
    If nothing else, it will get you or an interested bystander a chance to yank your hood open more than one every 10,000 miles.

    2. You can learn how to do brain surgery by watching YouTube videos, so why not something as simple as changing out your engine air filter?
    All of the maintenance items that you're just now learning about are covered in detail out on the interwebs.
    @NutzAboutBolts has some very good ones.
    It's not a heavy lift....even in Caly, where you probably have to perform an ecological impact study and get permits to change your own oil....but there are still (probably) one or two DIY-ers left over there.

    Don't go crazy and think that you have to buy $18,500 worth of Snap-On tools.
    Really.
    For most of the items, I'm thinking that brands like Stanley and Craftsman will be more than adequate and about $100 will go a long way towards making you rip-off-resistant when you REALLY have to have something important done.

    If nothing else, familiarizing yourself with all of the maintenance tasks for your car will give you a much better idea of what is being done and you will be able to more easily judge whether or not it's done RIGHT.

    REMEMBER.
    A dealership employee gets paid by the JOB more often than not.
    More jobs = more money.
    This encourages short cuts and sloppy work.
    Even "master mechanics" who are salaried or hourly employees are judged by how much work they crank out.

    When I work on one of MY cars?

    I can take the extra time to check things out or find that fastener that went skittering across the garage when I dropped it.
    If nothing else?

    I know who to blame if it's not done right! :)


    Good Luck!
     
    #6 ETC(SS), Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  7. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    Which wonderful Bay Area dealer provided those “necessary” services :whistle:?

    Just good to know what places to avoided when possible;).

    Prior to your next servicing, I’d investigate another dealer or shop as the current service provider appears to have their best interest in mind and not yours:cool:.

    Good luck and keep us posted (y).
     
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  8. NewHybridOwner

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    $19.46 for "Mass AF cleaner" is way too high: a week or two back I bought a can of CRC MAF cleaner to use on a different vehicle -- less than $10, and it will do a lot more than just one vehicle. Many of the other "parts" charges may have been artificially high too.

    And how did they calculate the labor charges? Did each 5-minute job get charged at their minimum time (15 minutes or even longer)?
     
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    There is no "chart towards the back"; you're sending him on a wild goose chase. There is an event-by-event maintenance explanation, in the separate Warranty and Maintenance Booklet. Also, everybody has different mechanical "comfort levels". It's good to push the limits a bit, but not everybody is willing to do everything involved.

    Ok, Dutch uncle time:

    You can read? Here's an excerpt from the Toyota Warranty and Maintenance Booklet, for your car:

    upload_2019-9-2_9-46-33.png

    The highlighted items are really all you need the dealership doing. The engine and cabin filters: waive them. Inspect them yourself, and change only as needed. The rest of it, is mostly fluff, and/or lawyer requested...

    Virtually all the stuff on the dealership invoice is quick-buck nonsense.

    That said, note the brake item above: that is a FULL brake inspection. The dealership apparently didn't feel inclined to do that. They DID stiff you for some brake fluid, for topping up the reservoir I'd assume. The latter is totally unecessary, in a brake system that is functioning normally, not leaking. Which I'd assume applies to yours.

    But, toyota usa recommends that full brake inspection, tri-yearly or 30K miles, whichever comes first.

    Here's the sub-note 3 text btw, same page:

    upload_2019-9-2_9-51-49.png

    You should have this booklet, btw. If it's missing, you can download pdf version from Toyota Tech Info (just google that), in the manuals section.

    That said, the event-by-event format sucks, makes it more-or-less impossible to get a sense of the patterns, frequencies of various services. I did a table summarizing it:

    2010 Prius Maintenance Schedule (US).jpg

    Spreadsheet and pdf versions of the above also attached:
     

    Attached Files:

    #9 Mendel Leisk, Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  10. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    ^ Well said(y).

    Just make sure to turn your Dutch uncle off;).

    We only need one around here(y).
     
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  11. The Critic

    The Critic Resident Critic

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    I see that a lot of snakes were sacrificed for this service. All of those items carry some level of legitimacy (especially 44K and #109 EPR), but not at the prices they were being sold.

    I am a little concerned that they added the #704 frigi-charge; the Prius a/c system is sensitive to the oil used. If it’s a POE oil, then it might be fine.

    Since BG products were used, I would assume Dublin Toyota or Capitol Toyota?
     
    #11 The Critic, Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  12. Grit

    Grit Senior Member

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    The coolant conditioner is the scary one. A member here once had a failure related to coolant, toyota investigated the coolant and found coolant additive was added which cause the coolant to thicken. The member ate the cost of all repairs because toyota said the coolant was contaminated, the stealership that did the service was not responsible.
     
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  13. The Critic

    The Critic Resident Critic

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    BG has a very very good warranty program.

    Lifetime BG Protection Plan® | BG Products, Inc.
     
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  14. royrose

    royrose Senior Member

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    For comparison, I brought my 2010 Prius in at 92,000 miles to my local Toyota dealer: charge for Oil &filter, tire rotation and multi-point inspection: $55.00. They didn't suggest anything else.

    So,I do believe you were ripped off. How long did they have it in the shop?

    If anything, I wonder if my dealer's cursory inspection may miss something but the Prius still runs perfectly. I plan to ask about details of their brake inspection at the next oil change. When I get to 120,000 miles and spark plugs are due to be changed, I will bring it to a well respected hybrid specialist elsewhere in my state and find out what they recommend at that mileage.
     
    #14 royrose, Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    My mom was Dutch, had a lot of married sisters...
     
  16. The Critic

    The Critic Resident Critic

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    For $55, they changed the oil and filter, topped off the washer fluid, aired up the tires and handed your keys back to you.

    The poor soul who received this job probably got paid .2 or .3 hr and could care less about the condition of your car. And service writers know that customers who only request oil changes rarely buy anything else. So, they tell their techs to not look too hard...especially if it was not your first time there.

    If you pay for one of their “overpriced” minor services, then the tech may get paid enough to look over your car a bit more thoroughly.
     
    #16 The Critic, Sep 2, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  17. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    i'm at 65k and 90 months. i find it amazing that this car doesn't need any major service until 100k or 10 years
     
  18. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    "...you're sending him on a wild goose chase. "

    I'm NOT sending him on a wild goose chase just because it's a separate booklet.
    It was a MINOR mistake. I'll take 30 lashes with a wet noodle.

    And some may think it's an "event-by-event maintenance explanation" but it's not. It informs you of
    what to do at certain intervals. You can choose to ignore or not do certain items, like why would you
    check the cabin air filter or engine air filter?????

    All the maintenance things MOST people CAN do, should they chose too, unless they are physically unable too.
    That book is NOT a details version of what SHOULD be done, like changing the transmission fluid.
    It's enough for the average owner to understand what and when things should be done.
    But if they follow that schedule, as least, they should be in good shape.
     
  19. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    why you would check the filters? to see if they are dirty?:confused:

    now, you got me with the 'check the drivers floor mat' :p
     
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  20. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk 'Orrible Oracle

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    Yes it is. :p
     
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