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1997 Mits. galant


went for an oil change and rec’d a list of things to be done:

1. Change air filter- can do it myself:-)

2. Valv p/s flush kit???

3. Valv Fuel system

Estimated cost: $300+ tax. Please advice.

“Valv” probably refers to the Valvoline brand. Apparently the oil change place (hopefully you know better than to go to quick lube joint like Jiffy Lube or its clones!!) is attempting to push some services that you probably don’t need.

It would appear that “Valv p/s flush kit” means flushing your power steering hydraulic system with a Valvoline product. Flushing the power steering? Unless your power steering has been contaminated with some other type of fluid, I can’t imagine why this service would be performed. Did you complain about any noises or other malfunctions with your power steering?

“Valv Fuel system” appears to indicate a Valvoline fuel system cleaning product. If you are having specific problems, such as reduced power, lower mpg, or rough idle, perhaps you need a fuel system cleaning. Or more likely, you don’t need it. If you suspect that you may need a fuel system cleaning, just put a bottle of Chevron Techron in your next tank of gas and save…who knows how much money…rather than paying for the oil change place to clean a fuel system that may not need this service.

I took the car to Monroe, I have not complained of any problems. My car is running just fine.
I will change the air filter and also try the Chevron techron . Thanks.

“I took the car to Monroe”

Therein lies your problem!

If you hang around on this forum for a few days, you will see most of the veterans of this board advising people NOT to go to a chain operation, such as Midas, Meineke, Monro, Sears, Aamco, Lee Myles, or Cottman. These places use sort of a “bait and switch approach” of advertising a low-priced oil change, or an incredibly cheap brake job, or a “transmission tune-up”, or some other maintenance or repair job at a very low price.

Then, once they have you in their shop, they will attempt to “upsell” you with unneeded services, such as you described or they will suddenly discover that many other parts need to be replaced, thus changing the bargain job to a very expensive one–possibly including parts that did not need to be replaced. In addition to upselling and charging for things that are not necessary, these chains are also frequently cited for poor quality workmanship.

If you want to hold down the cost of maintaining your car, you will take it to a reputable independent mechanic and you will request only what is specified by the vehicle’s manufacturer at a particular mileage interval. Sometimes dealerships offer coupons for service specials, and in these instances, they are also cheaper in the long run than most of the chain operations.

No matter where you take your car for service, just learn how to say NO to their attempts at upselling.

I agree completely with VDCdriver and also say pass on all of this since the car appears to be running well.
There’s not much money to be made on a simple oil change and the cheap oil change is simply a draw to get people in, much like a car dealer advertising a desireable used car at an unbelievably low price. The car will already have “been sold” when you show up, if it even existed in the first place.
The upselling is where the money is made.