W203 front coil replacement

Theo Cupier

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Any idea what I can expect this to cost me?

I've just had an MOT failure due to a bad coil (rusted) and I've been told it's best to replace both, not just one.

The car is a 52 plate C class sports coupe with about 85K miles on the clock...
 

GeorgeA

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Local indie charged £205 for this in July local tyre depot wanted £300.

Since replacement car runs much smoother
 
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Theo Cupier

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Thanks for that George.

On the positive side, the local dealership have just redone all 4 corners due to rusty wheel arches (as a goodwill gesture since the warranty wouldn't touch it). On the downside, this probably means I'm stuck with official rates for the labour which will doubtless increase that figure!

After over £1000 spent earlier in the year replacing the glowplugs (or rather rebuilding the engine block after the old plugs sheared off in situ) I'm starting to regret buying this car...
 

GeorgeA

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T........ On the downside, this probably means I'm stuck with official rates for the labour which will doubtless increase that figure!

Its your car take for repair anywhere you like. If a warranty of some sort is still in force with the dealership simply don't tell them. The warranty will run out soon enough.

Seemingly coil springs are a common failure these days, many blame it on all the speed bumps around. I take them much slower now;)
 

LYNALL

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Changed wifes front one a few months ago took less than 1 hour and spring cost £53 from merc.

Dont see why you need to change both, maybe the correct thing to do but i bet it very rarely happens.



Lynall
 
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Theo Cupier

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Its your car take for repair anywhere you like. If a warranty of some sort is still in force with the dealership simply don't tell them. The warranty will run out soon enough.

True, but unfortunately it's with the dealer for an MOT at the moment (I got them to do it after they've had the vehicle for 8 weeks doing the warranty rust repair). so it's a little difficult for me to whisk it away from them.

They've just quoted me:
£107.87 parts
£239.57 labour (apparently that's 2.4 hours labour with a 30% discount)
£347.44 Total.

Ouch.

Maybe it's time to think about trading this thing in. Whether or not it's in good condition, it's starting to feel like an "unlucky" car for me. :(
 

GeorgeA

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True, but unfortunately it's with the dealer for an MOT at the moment (I got them to do it after they've had the vehicle for 8 weeks doing the warranty rust repair). so it's a little difficult for me to whisk it away from them.

They've just quoted me:
£107.87 parts
£239.57 labour (apparently that's 2.4 hours labour with a 30% discount)
£347.44 Total.

Ouch.

Maybe it's time to think about trading this thing in. Whether or not it's in good condition, it's starting to feel like an "unlucky" car for me. :(

Having failed an MOT you can take the car away for repair and if returned and retested within 14 days (I think) you only pay half the MOT fee again. You could save over £120 doing this.

As far as trading the car in well I think after spending so much money you may well have a car in top condition now and could enjoy many trouble free miles - but I think we all know how you are feeling at the moment.

Anyway hope this is of some help..........
 
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Theo Cupier

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My local independent Merc specialist has just come back and quoted me £311 for the coils, so I'm not losing too much sticking with MB for this, by the looks if things, which comforts me slightly.

On the downside, though, I've just been told that my torque arm bushes have gone as well, which will be another £275. Another 2.4 hours labour to fit some tiny rubber seals.

Apparently the MOT should have failed that too but for some reason they missed it.

I'm crossing my fingers that - once the coils are replaced - the MOT centre will just retest the coils and I'll get away with it. Whereafter, I think it's time for me to get rid of this car while I can still afford to!

Mental note to self, don't bother spending money on an AA vehicle inspection, next time I buy a used car.

:( :(
 

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Who was it that quoted that price for the springs
 
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Theo Cupier

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Both MB and the independent said the same price - £45 each (+VAT) which seems to align to what I found after a brief googling.
 

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Both MB and the independent said the same price - £45 each (+VAT) which seems to align to what I found after a brief googling.

It was the fitting price that puzzled me, both being so close
 
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Theo Cupier

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Me too. Apparently, MB gave me a 30% discount on their standard labour rates. I heard through other sources that the independent specialist (not sure if I can give names here) were £60/hour against MB's £120/hour.

MB said it was 2.4 hours work whereas the indy said it was nearer 3 hours. So swings & roundabouts really. So you have:
2.4 x (70% of 120) = £201 @ MB
3 x 60 = £180 @ independent.

Not much in it.
 

LYNALL

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I reckon 3 hours is taking the p### as i said it only took me 1 hour and i havent done one on a c class before.
Any general garage should be able to do this as almost every make of cars seems to break springs now.



Lynall
 
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Theo Cupier

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My error, it was actually fractured. And I've had them both replaced.

£357 for the work, the MOT and the retest. Given the original quote of £347 just for the repair work, that's not as bad as it could have been.
 

GeorgeA

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My error, it was actually fractured. And I've had them both replaced.

£357 for the work, the MOT and the retest. Given the original quote of £347 just for the repair work, that's not as bad as it could have been.

So the rust has been removed the smooth ride restored and with a years MOT bet its looking all good:D

You must have the best looking and in tip top condition C coupe around, are you still looking to part company with it??

My advise - drive it for a month then decide...... Good Luck
 
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Theo Cupier

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So the rust has been removed the smooth ride restored and with a years MOT bet its looking all good:D

You must have the best looking and in tip top condition C coupe around, are you still looking to part company with it??

My advise - drive it for a month then decide...... Good Luck

On the "best looking and most tip top condition C coupe" it certainly does look very shiny and new. They've valeted it as well, which is nice - scrubbed and polished alloys & tyre walls too. The only odd thing is that they seem to have forgotten to clean the bonnet, so the sides are absolutely gleaming but it's messy front on!

As to the whole keep/sell thing, it's not an easy decision. It came home this week after 2 months with MB and I must confess I was rather excited to be able to drive it again after so long. And having been loaned an A150 by the garage, it was nice to drive something that wasn't woefully underpowered (mental note to self, remember that 80mph arrives all too easily :roll: )

But the flip side of this is that I've owned the car for just over a year and it's been in the garage for almost 4 months of that time - and I know more garage time (and bills) are already on the way for the torque arm bushes, so I can't help wondering what's next (and next and next). I'm getting a bit fed up with mechanics saying that "after this is repaired it should give you thousands of miles of trouble free motoring" each time it goes in to the garage!

But getting rid just starts the whole painful process of deciding what to replace it with - and I'm no more certain to end up with something reliable than I am by sticking with what I've got (unless I spend a lot more money buying a new car or PCP)
If I could confidently say that - after the next repair - it will need nothing but routine servicing for 2 or 3 years, I'd certainly keep it. And the decision to get rid of it is harder to make now that I've got it back
 


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