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Old 3rd June 2009, 19:34   #1
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Unhappy '05 Corolla A/C Issue

Dear Members,

My '05 Toyota Corolla H2 recently crossed the 1,00,000 km mark and was due for it's service. Around the same time, I began to notice a sound which was previously unheard of during the ownership period. Typically I guessed such a sound means the AC compressor is due for a change, and was sure of the same when the sound disappeared once the A/C was switched off. Still, I sent the car in for servicing and asked them to look into the matter without mentioning my hunch.

An estimate of the job was given to my father and he gave the go-ahead, however when I heard of the estimate I immediately called the service centre to stop the work, as the estimate was in ecess of Rs.50K.

Today, I went to the service centre to get some clarity on exactly what work is being done on the car, and the break-up of the charges involved.

When I spoke to the service advisor, he agreed to provide me with all the details. I had to wait for about half an hour while the requested details were given to me. Here is the break-up of the charges :-

PARTS for 100,000 km Service :-

1. Fliud washer - 01 quantity - Rs. 28
2. Engine oil - 4 lts. quantity - Rs. 860
3. Oil filter - 01 quantity - Rs. 385
4. Oil Pan Gasket - Rs. 33

LABOUR for 100,000 km service :-

1. 100,000 km service - Rs. 930

The total of the above comes to Rs. 2,236. Verbally, the advisor had hinted around Rs. 2,500.

The above service has already been performed on the car.

NOW comes the estimate for the A/C parts.

PARTS to be replaced to diagnose A/C noice :-

1. Part no. 883201A481 : Compressor Assembly - 01 quantity - Rs. 36,302
2. Part no. 884101A290 : Clutch Assembly - 01 quantity - Rs. 18,185
3. Part no. 8847447010 : Receiver Dryer - 01 quantity - Rs. 1,865

LABOUR for the above A/C work :-

1. Receiver Dryer Replacement - Rs. 580
2. Compressor & Clutch "R/R" - Rs. 695
3. AC Gas Recovery - Rs. 1,985

The GRAND [] total for the above work is Rs. 59,612 !!

As per my request made today, the A/C work has been halted.

Now here are my problems and my constraints :-

1. Are such exorbitant costs justified? I doubt the whole A/C compressor has to be replaced for a little sound, but even if it does, since when have Toyota parts become so expensive? Do any of the members here have a similar experience?

2. The cooling of the A/C is not affected as of now. It's just the sound, although it's my father's car and the sound is audible, therefore he would like to have it fixed rather than ignored.

3. The parts have been ordered as per claims made by the service advisor. Am I now obliged to let the work proceed and pay for the parts? I wouldn't think so. I would prefer to pick up my car tomorrow by paying just for the service and deferring the AC work till I get more clarity from you members or from a local garage.

4. Any of the Mumbai members know of a good, reputed, trustworthy AC specialist or garage where I can get a second opinion regarding this issue? Frankly, Rs. 50K to get rid of a little sound seems ricidulous.

We've had a very trouble-free experience with this car till date, and it has proved to be a very worthy and capable commuter. Absolutely mint condition, always cared for and never neglected. Which is why, this issue has to be resolved asap. Till date the car has always been sent to the authorized service centre for any maintenance work.

The car has been with them for a little over 24 hours now. Even saw it during my visit to the service centre today. The service advisor was very co-operative and very cordial during the whole conversation,a dn is expecting my call tomorrow regarding the AC work. I am hoping for some help from the members here in time so I can resolve this issue as soon as possible.

Thanks in advance guys. Really need some quick gyaan here !!
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Old 3rd June 2009, 20:43   #2
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In such case, an older Toyota is no good!
Toyota's are known to be reliable & replacement parts are supposed to be cheaper, specially for the Corolla, but if such high costs are involved, the whole USP of the brand is diminished.

I have a Corolla myself & Im not happy with the car, maintenance & spares are expensive. Also, the so called "bulletproof reliability" does not apply to Corolla atleast.
To top it all, its unexciting to the core, just a bundle of crap, I'd say! Looking to get rid of it, but again resale is pathetic.
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Old 3rd June 2009, 21:14   #3
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Hi Flyingspur, why dont you just postpone the ac work and try exploring from

1. Other toyota dealers
2. AC mechanics
3. Independent Garages

I guess you may explore the reasons given by them and evaluate what is best, with more bhpians coming with their informative suggestions shortly
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Old 3rd June 2009, 22:04   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhp1 View Post
In such case, an older Toyota is no good!
Toyota's are known to be reliable & replacement parts are supposed to be cheaper, specially for the Corolla, but if such high costs are involved, the whole USP of the brand is diminished.

I have a Corolla myself & Im not happy with the car, maintenance & spares are expensive. Also, the so called "bulletproof reliability" does not apply to Corolla atleast.
To top it all, its unexciting to the core, just a bundle of crap, I'd say! Looking to get rid of it, but again resale is pathetic.
Hmm, this post of mine is completely besides the point, but I'll go ahead and post anyway.

Firstly, maintenance and spares, somehow I haven't found it to be too expensive IMO, atleast parts are cheaper than the Civic. Secondly, during it's 100,000 kms it has seen a LOT of varien terrain, I mean literally, it's done a fair bit of off-roading too, and some really long trips, and never once has it failed on us, not even minutely right down to the alignment of the windshield washer nozzles! It simply defines reliability in our case. If an A/C compressor does have to pack up, I think 100,000 is an alright figure for it to happen.And thirdly, as far as unexciting goes, I've revelled in it's power and driveability in the varied and trying conditions it's seen. Maybe it's not the best handling car around, but still the driving experience has been far beyond satisfactory. Infact, I consider it quite the drivers car! The new Altis has blunted this a bit. And inspite of all this, it returns pleasing FE figures tank after tank after tank.

Anyway, back to the topic now, yeah I've decided to postpone the AC work till I get some more gyaan from members here and from some AC experts I'm being referred to (if you guys have suggestions, please shoot!)
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