I have a 1999 Cavalier. Last week the gear shift went loose and I had the car towed to a Chevrolet dealer. He said the shift cable broke and he would have to order one. The job would cost $350. Is that a reasonable charge? It seems high.
Now that you know what’s wrong, why not call around to some local shops and get some verbal estimates over the phone? The best information on cost is from local service providers. It doesn’t matter if someone 2000 miles away can get it done for $50. It doesn’t apply to your situation.
When you get the estimate, tell them you’ll call them back shortly with your authorization to proceed. Then make some quick calls to get a ballpark feel if the cost is reasonable. Factor in that the place that did the diagnosis isn’t doing it for free so if you decide to pull out and go elsewhere, you may pay a diagnostic fee.
Well, google is your pal here.
The cable is available for about $50. Check RockAuto on http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/raframecatalog.php?carcode=1353169&parttype=8528&a=FRc1353169k429575.
Assuming that the OEM cable is double the price, it looks like the dealer is charging you 2 hours at $125 / hour to fix this. I couldn’t see this taking more than 2 hours ~ including a coffee break.
Sounds a little pricey to me.