Great question EMCar, and one I am referring to Ray for consideration as a weekly “Ask Ray” Q&A column submission. Obviously, if the same shop did the work twice you have a legitimate beef with them. They should also track your vehicle’s repairs to some degree. Communication is also key in my opinion. That is the largest and most expensive repair job for that vehicle and most vehicles. Asking if you had it done should have been part of the pre-work dialogue. If you were asked and didn’t take care to answer correctly, so be it. However, as the image here shows, many “good” shops do in fact label the vehicles they work on that have had this service completed to help future mechanics and owners avoid your exact quandary! This label was applied by the Lexus dealere I had do this work on my Toyota Highlander. Sorry to hear that it happened, but perhaps Ray can keep it form happening to other owners. I may also tackle this topic at BestRide, our sister publication.
A sticker came with the timing belt kit I recently used on my 1999 Civic. I filled it in and stuck it on a strut tower where it is very visible. I have sometimes seen such stickers on old Hondas in auto recycling yards.
Could I trouble you for an image? I am going to T up a story on this. I’d appreciate the help. Thanks
I appreciate your response, GorehamJ. The first timing chain replacement was done at another dealer.
Great idea about a durable sticker somewhere on the car engine compartment. Thanks, shanonia.
The first timing chain replacement was done at another shop.
Excellent idea about the sticker!
The first timing chain replacement was done at another shop.
Maybe Ray can still address the issue, since it’s definitely something to think about.
Who tracks the work done?
The owner of the vehicle does.
Each time the vehicle is serviced/repaired, the owner of the vehicle is given a copy of the work order and a receipt. The owner should save this information.
Because the vehicle is repaired/serviced at many different locations over it’s life, there’s no main location where all this data is stored.
When you have this information, you’re then able to review it to determine if a certain service is due.
Also, if you have this information, and ever want to sell the vehicle, and are able to tell the perspective buyer that you have all the repair/service history records for the vehicle, that’s a big plus.
Tester is right. It’s the owner’s responsibility.
For each car I buy, I start a manila file folder and put the purchase documents in it, sales brochures, registration. On the file folder I write the VIN, key code, radio code if any, etc. As repairs are done I put the documents in the file. I have made a chart for each vehicle, charting out what maintenance is due at what mileage/months, and update the info as the work is done. From time to time I add up what I’ve spent each year on maintenance, repairs, tires, batteries, etc. For me its one of the pleasures of ownership, but ranks below driving.
For my 1999 Civic it’s become a fat file folder.
Thank you for you response, Tester.
I’m one of those people who is so careful about keeping good records, and I do, but this one slipped by me.
My wife is good at remembering things, but even she missed it. Oh well . . .
I’m good about keeping good records too, but somehow this one slipped by my wife and me.
If you actually have a timing belt, it might not be that easy to tell just by looking at the belt after 20,000 miles how many miles of wear it had. When I replaced the timing belt on my Corolla at 100k miles, it looked to be in pretty good shape. Could tell it was used of course, but no obvious major wear patterns had developed.
I’ve been informed the 2009 Odyssey has a timing CHAIN.
From the comments I’ve received, it looks as if my usually impeccable record keeping failed me big time on this one!
I do appreciate your comments, George_San_Jose1!
Back in the late '60s, because I didn’t check my service receipts, I wound-up having my radiator flushed, and my antifreeze replaced, after just a few months. The cost of that mistake on my part was negligible in comparison to replacing a timing belt and water pump after just 19k miles, but that waste of my hard-earned dollars taught me that good record-keeping on the part of the car owner was a really good idea.
Ever since then, I have done the same as Shanonia, and I construct a chart on which I can check-off the services that have been done, and on which I record both the date and the odometer mileage of those services. Instead of having to go through a pile of receipts, my home-made chart allows me to see at a glance what services I have had performed, and when they were performed. In addition to preventing duplication of services, this is a good way to see if I need to have a service performed in the near future.
I’m sure that it would be possible to do this on my computer, but a few minutes with just paper and a pen accomplish this task very nicely.
I’m using GMail and they have “online office suite” for quite a long time, so I’m tracking vehicles maintenance as a GSheet, with one tab for every vehicle in he family, here is a tab for my 2012 Altima:
I do something very similar using Excel.
I steer away from online software. What happens if the company drops the program or makes major changes to it, and you lose all your data.
Do you print everything out once a year or so?
I have a maintenance folder for each vehicle where I keep receipts. I also have a book or notebook in each vehicle that I record most maintenance or replacements. Right now I’m using the maintenance books that came with our vehicles. However, those don’t have room for extra things or notes and I’ve not figured good ways to include that info.
I also use markers and paint pens on certain items. Like on my batteries I write the date the battery was replaced. Before the maintenance notebooks, I’d write the mileage and date on my oil filter.
You really need to be responsible for keeping track of the maintenance on your vehicles unless you have a long-term relationship with a shop and part of the service provided is keeping track of it for you.
I would say, my chances of loosing file are higher than chances of Google going belly up
We use Google Apps for Business for our entire company, for years, I can not imagine them discontinuing this cash cow.
you are right… I guess I’m a bit paranoid on that topic.
It’s definitely not, it’s a timing belt:
99% sure all of the Odyssey’s use timing belts instead of chains
If your files are loose, then clearly you need to tighten things in your file cabinet.
Otherwise, you might lose some files.