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  1. Jumping Jehosaphat

    Jumping Jehosaphat Junior Member

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    I get most of my service at the Toyota dealership. Last time they looked at it was right before I moved states to get an oil change and make sure everything was ok for my drive. That was in December. Today I went to get my car inspected per state regulations, and they told me I needed new front tie rods and alignment. They said they were totally worn out and failed my 2010 Prius until it is fixed. The lowest estimate they would give me was about $800, saying they needed to replace the entire rack and pinion since tie rods are not sold as parts for Priuses. So my questions are these: 1- How could the Toyota dealership never have brought this to my attention? This kind of damage isn’t done in 2 months. 2-Has anyone replaced just the tie rods? I can find the parts, but I am not versed in any auto mechanics. 3- Do you think the dealership would have any suggestions for me? The internet quotes I am getting are the exact opposite of the pricing I was estimated (they gave me low parts cost, high labor; internet says the part should be more expensive and labor lower). I am very aggravated being surprised by this. My vehicle had no steering problems and is perfectly aligned currently.
     
  2. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Lapsed Cargo Cultist

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    So the inspectors said the tire rods were shot, and some dealership (or other garage) concurred and said $800 to replace? Or are the inspectors also the ones who gave you the quote? Sorry, that's just the way it reads, and if that's the case it sounds kind of fishy.

    If everything's kosher, $800 doesn't sound unreasonable, btw. That the way it is these days, parts are pricey, and there's a fair bit of labour.

    Steering Gear & Linkage for 2010 Toyota Prius | Toyota Parts
     
    #2 Mendel Leisk, Feb 13, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2018
  3. tankyuong

    tankyuong Active Member

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    i would run from that place
     
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  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    how many miles on her?
     
  5. Jumping Jehosaphat

    Jumping Jehosaphat Junior Member

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    This just happened today, and it was indeed the inspectors that gave me a quote. I definitely want to call the dealership tomorrow and ask them. The price they gave me was for a used rack and pinion for $250 the rest for labor. New rank and pinion was quoted at $1050 with labor. Thing is, the only thing that need replacement is the tie ends, which he said usually run about $60 each, but Toyota would separate the parts.
     
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  6. Jumping Jehosaphat

    Jumping Jehosaphat Junior Member

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    I have about 220k miles on it.
     
  7. tankyuong

    tankyuong Active Member

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    try a different place
     
  8. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I would take it to another shop that specializes in alignments and see what they say and there is a good chance they do state inspections too. I ran into this with brakes one time when I lived in Pennsylvania, the inspector failed me because of my brakes and I used to be the kid that checked cars at another inspection station so I went to my old boss and pulled the wheel and he said there is nothing wrong with those brakes and put a sticker on it.
    I'm not saying your tie rods are good or bad but I would at leas get another opinion and price. I don't know about the Prius but I never heard of replacing a rack to get new tie rod ends.
     
  9. ChapmanF

    ChapmanF Senior Member

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    Looks like Toyota sells the tie rod outer ends separately, but the inner ends only as part of the rack (even though the repair manual, IIRC, explains how to R&R them). So this inspector must be claiming that the inners are worn out, if they think the rack has to be replaced.

    And the quotes are supplied by the inspector (are they a shop that would do the work themselves, or did they supply you a quote from a shop they have some, cough, relationship, cough, with?).

    Seeing as you've noticed no steering looseness or instability or other issue, I would just go to some other well-regarded shop that has no connection to this inspector, and see what they say. If they show you the tie rods are ok, I'd look for a state whistleblower number to have a chat about this particular inspector.

    -Chap
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Lapsed Cargo Cultist

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    Even if they're right, it seems too cosy, for the inspectors to be quoting and/or doing repairs. Too much temptation, when a failed inspection is their meal ticket.
     
  11. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    They sell remanufactured racks on the Rock Auto website with the inner tie rod installed and the outers are seperate.
    If you mess with tie rods you will have to have the alignment checked.
     
  12. David Beale

    David Beale Senior Member

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    Call your favorite Toyota dealer, make an inspection appointment, and take it there for a -proper- checkup! Check around of course, some dealers are very good to buy a car at, some are very good service wise. The two may not always be the same. ;)
     
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  13. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Lapsed Cargo Cultist

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    If you get a pass at a dealership maybe pass all the paper work on to whoever licenses the inspectors. And go after them for whatever the dealership charged you.
     
  14. tvpierce

    tvpierce Active Member

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    Unfortunately, that's the model most states have adopted here in the US. It is indeed a dubious arrangement -- kind of a case of the fox watching the hen house.
     
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  15. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    When I worked at an safety inspection station in Pennsylvania many years ago it was common for the garage to do the repairs.

    You quote the customer a price and he says yes or no.

    I live in one of the two counties in Indiana where we are required to have a pollution inspection every two years and it it free and is totally ran by the state. If you fail you have to take your car somewhere else for repairs then have the test done all over again.
     
  16. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Lapsed Cargo Cultist

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    Up here (British Columbia, Canada) in the 80's they had a safety inspection program, with dedicated, government-run stations. They were inspection only, completely arms-length from any repair process. They checked your brakes (on some kind of skid pad), all the lights, various items, made sure the car was roadworthy.

    That was ditched, but inspections continued for compliance with pollution restrictions. That's ditched too now; it's back to the Wild West: lot of vehicles on the road with no daytime running lights (supposedly mandatory up here), burnt out license/running/brake/head lights. And lots of stinkers. We progress. :rolleyes:
     
  17. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    Indiana did away with their state safety inspection back in the mid 70's right after I moved here. I thought it was great just once a year because Pennsylvania it was done two times a year. Indiana had a totally different attitude about safety than Pennsylvania. Several year ago Pennsylvania went to an annual inspection. I don't know if all counties in Pa. have a pollution inspection but the ones around Pittsburgh where I was from still have it.
     
  18. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

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    800 bucks ain't that bad for the amount work work and parts.
     
  19. qdllc

    qdllc Senior Member

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    Take it elsewhere. Have a trustworthy mechanic check it out. If they say nothing’s wrong, go to another inspector. Then, report the first guy to the authorities who certify inspectors. Frankly, I’d not trust the word of an inspector who offers to have his shop “fix” a problem unless I can see for myself the part has failed.

    This kind of scam sadly does happen.
     
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  20. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I don't know if they take you to your car and physically show you what is wrong and explain exactly what needs done or they just have a service writer tell you over the counter your car failed state inspection and here is what it will cost to fix it.
    I realize some people wouldn't know if you showed them but I would if I ran the business, at least I would try.
     
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