$447 for a gasket?!

bmw
323

#1

OK, it’s a BMW, so this is probably a dumb question. But the oil filter housing gasket needs replacing. The estimate calls for 3 1/2 hours of labor plus the gasket for a total of $447. Am I being robbed?

Thanks!

Richard


#2

What year and engine? Do you have an independent mechanic that you trust (not the dealer)?

Get a 2nd/3rd opinion and quote.


#3

No, not $447 for a gasket.
$447 to get it fixed.
Have you seen where it is ?
Did they outline to you the work involved ?
If this is a dealer, $100.00 an hour is pretty normal.
Other indy shops may charge less but…

Do not short change these skilled technicians. TIME is money !
They can NOT go to the grocery store at the end of the week with a hand shake and a pat on the back.


#4

There’s that URBAN LEGEND about a store on 5th Ave where a walk in customer asked the price of a shirt. The appropriately snobbish clerk answered, “if you must ask the price you obviously can’t afford it.” I am quite sure that the dealer’s flat rate on labor is well over $100 per hour and all manner of incidental labor and parts is required to get the job done ‘correctly.’ But several domestics are prone to similar failures at prices very near that.


#5

It’s not $447 for a gasket. It is $20 for the gasket and $427 for knowing the proper way and having the proper skills and tools to replace it.

A rear main seal can list for $20. To get to it, the transmission must be dropped. That costs way more the $447, especially at BMW mechanics’ rates.

3-1/2 hours means a lot of things must be removed to get to this gasket, then refitted once the repair is made. This is not an easy job.


#6

After getting through the title of the post, I would say that the price is probably about right for dealer rates and may even be right for independent shops in certain high-priced parts of the country.

I noted that even in OK a local full serve gas station changed their labor rates several years ago to 60 dollars an hour.


#7

It doesn’t seem like an oil filter housing would be that hard to access. If this is the going rate for this repair, the question is how much is it leaking? Can you live with adding a little oil now and again?

Seems like a bunch of money.


#8

Obviously, you’ve never worked on a Beemer. Below is the engine bay of the 1999 323. See the black canister on the front right between the intake manifold and radiator? That is the oil filter cap. The housing is under it. There is a lot of things that need to be removed to get to the mounting bolts on the side of that canister low down on the side of the engine block. I know, because I replaced the camshaft senor on one of these engines. The sensor is mounted high, just under that black breather hose just behind that oil filter cap. But the connector is located under the intake manifold, and the book calls for the intake manifold to be removed just to disconnect the cam sensor!

http://i.ebayimg.com/01/!!gW-Tq!!mE~$(KGrHqYOKnMEw85Y0yGTBMZGyh1y5Q~~_4.JPG


#9

My duh. Of course, most of the labor is in accessing the housing. And I’m paying top dollar for highly skilled labor, which I can’t begrudge them. Thanks for the responses folks.
Richard


#10

Beemers aren’t cheap to fix, but be glad you aren’t running a Cat diesel in a big truck. It would be $447 just for the gasket, and about $125/hour for the tech to install it !


#11

I’m not familiar with this repair on this particular car but I would imagine it’s a pain in the neck based on the pic provided. The one on a Lincoln can take several hours and it’s far more accessible than the BMW one appears to be.

If the BMW is anything like the Lincoln I don’t think I would allow this repair to linger.
Hot coolant is often routed through oil filter stands so this means that the engine oil could possibly be diluted with coolant. It won’t take much of this to shorten the engine life or cause the engine to fail catastrophically in a worst case scenario.


#12

Holy shoehorn Batman! Look how close that strut tower is to the side of that engine. Might have to grease the engine to slide it in :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: