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Day time head lights are running hot,causing outside plastic to melt

Will not pass inspection. Toyota wants $1058 to replace them and can’t tell me if it will happen again.It is a 2004 toyota highlander.

Are your lamps OEM, standard or some sort of after market design?

Have you carefully cleaned the contacts on both the lamp and the car?

Check the salvage yards for a set of headlight assemblies. They will be far cheaper than the dealer. Make sure you use OEM bulbs.

A new headlight assembly for that vehicle costs around $50-$70 per side, $40 for a pair of bulbs. I’d tell the dealer to go fornicate him/herself with a rusty crescent wrench, and do the job yourself. I replaced both headlight assemblies on my Mustang in literally 5 minutes.

Why does the dealer want to charge you so much? Get some aftermarket parts and save a bundle and make sure the bulbs arent to powerful .As the guys said.Wife got rearended and the repair shop charged us a mint and did a poor job and used crappy used tailights (they look horrible-so go with new)-Kevin

I would bet that if the bill was broken down into all of its separate parts and the actual dealer cost on those lamps were known one would find that the bill is not that unreasonable.

Just like the government toliet seats,lets see.I paid a Honda dealer around$3 apiece for the the little plastic push button fastners that hold the airdam on,just telling you this for giggles-In my humble opinion they would have been overpriced @ 39Cents,eg;-Kevin

Those lights are less then $100 each. The dealer marketup for them must be 500%.

Find another mechanic. This should not cost anywhere near $1000.

See the attached link for replacements. The dealer’s price is insane.
http://www.autolightsbulbs.com/Headlights/Toyota_Highlander_Headlights.aspx

To do the work, ask the dealer’s parts department for an “exploded view” drawing of the headlamp module installation. It’ll be a big help and should be free.

One thing being incorrectly done here again is comparing the retail price of an aftermarket part against the unknown dealer cost of a lamp that the dealer obtains from Toyota. The cost of the latter is likely higher than the retail price of the aftermarket.
Should the dealer pay say 250 dollars for the lamp and sell it for 120 to be competetive?
At this point the entire bill has not even been broken down as to parts, labor, tax, etc, etc.

Example of one particular part I remember; a CV joint.
NAPA part - 68 dollars retail.
Dealer cost - 65 dollars.
Dealer retail- 95 dollars.
Should the dealer sell theirs for 68 dollars so as to remain competetive?

Dealers’ parts are typically two to three times (or more) as expensive as aftermarket replacement parts. I just priced a fog lamp kit and it was 3-1/2 times the cost of the same aftermarket kit.

One should always price out optional sources, however I don’t consider that as doing an incorrect comparison. It’s a competative world. If the dealer’s cost is a multiple of what other sources can privide, that’s business. I too thought about the camparison issue, and even of the deaper is charging twice aftermarket for the modules, he’s stilo quoting $758 for installation. IMHO that’s outrageous. Nothing personal against the dealer, but that’s outrageous.

The MSRP for each OEM lamp is $276, plus bulbs, labor (2.4 hrs) and sales tax the price qouted is not far off. I have never seen dealer parts marked up 500%.

That price may not be outrageous on labor even at 758. In some large metro areas like Chicago and San Francisco labor rates are 140 an hour and up.
I’ve never changed lamps on a Highlander so I don’t know what flat rate time is allowed. Some lamps are a royal PITA to change and a few hours per side could easily make the labor total hit 750+.

The point here is that up to this point the bill has not been broken down and I stand by my original assertion that it needs to be whittled down into separate pieces before any definitive judgement can be made.

I would have no hesitation in betting that the dealer cost on those lamps is far more than the retail price of the aftermarkets.
My opinion is based on doing warranty claims and figuring in a 25% markup over dealer cost. This led to my seeing the actual cost of a number of dealer parts and the cost was generally more, and often much more, than the retail prices of aftermarket parts.

The first time I ever worked up an estimate on a 5 grand Subaru transmission (no labor, fluid, etc) the customer went ballistic and accused us of robbing him blind. He settled down when he was shown that the dealer cost on that transmission was 4 grand although he was still mad that the transmission was that expensive. However, it wasn’t out fault this was so.

If the headlights are OEM HIDs, I could see the cost being over $1000, especially considering how difficult some vehicles are to work on. To replace the headlamp assemblies they may have to unbolt the front bumper; maybe even the radiator as well, to reach all those little nuts and bolts to get the assembly out of the car.
But, until the OP returns with more info, we’re all just guessing and tossing ideas out at random

The MSRP for each OEM lamp is $276, plus bulbs

Since you can buy the equivalent aftermarket light for $65. When I replaced my tail-light on my 4runner I bought aftermarket…and it turned out the light was made by the same company that makes them for Toyota. It was the EXACT SAME LIGHT. Only difference was the aftermarket light cost me $50…and toyota light was over $300.

This is NOT an item that you have to go to the dealer for. While the $1000 price may NOT be out of line for a dealer…that doesn’t mean it’s NOT out of line when you compare it to the competition. If you don’t compare it to the competition then you might as well just ALWAYS go to the dealer. Independent mechanics around here charge about $85/hr. Dealers are well over $120. So an Independent should be able to do this for under $400.

Heck, pull the fuse and run without them. I personally find them annoying on cars. Maybe people can see you better with them, but I’ll take my chances. Or if for some reason they must work to pass inspection, replace the assemblies with ones from a junkyard, pass your inspection, then pull the fuse or put in a switch.