Thursday, May 03, 2007

How much are those drive belts in the window?

The Accord is due for its 105k service, which also means it's due for a timing belt, balancer belt, and water pump. Honda's recommended service looks like this:

105,000 miles/7 yrs Scheduled Maintenance
Recommended service for your 2002 Honda Accord:

Replace the timing belt and balancer belt (4 cylinder models only). Inspect the water pump.
Inspect valve clearance.
Replace spark plugs (6 cylinder models).
Check idle speed.
Replace engine oil.
Rotate tires.
Replace engine oil filter.
Inspect front and rear brakes.
Check parking brake adjustment.
Inspect tie-rod ends, steering gearbox and rack boots.
Inspect suspension components.
Inspect driveshaft boots.
Inspect brake hoses and lines (including ABS).
Check all fluid levels, condition of fluids and check for leaks.
Inspect cooling system hoses and connections.
Inspect exhaust system.
Inspect fuel lines and connections.

Basically: change the oil, see what else might be wrong. The drive belts and water pump are not included in the 105k cost at the dealers.

Since we were a Honda family growing up, and since two non-Honda mechanics blew the engines on both the 1989 Accord and 1991 Civic, I'm hesitant to take it anyplace but the dealership. Call me paranoid.

I hate to bargain shop, but since we're talking about more than $500 I made some calls. I was very surprised at what I found (click on image to enlarge):

Rosenthal Fairfax: $1,384
Rosenthal Tysons: $1,295
Rosenthal Landmark: $989
Brown's Arlington: $1,225
Sheehey Alexandria: $920
Hendrick Woodbridge: $1,115

Difference between high and low: $464 !!!

I also plotted a Google Map to show the distance between dealers:

Ponderous. I may skip the 105k itself and get the belts and water pump done since I need breaks.

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