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Hi,

I'm a new owner of a 2005 Passat B5.5 GLX V6, and it needs a full timing belt service, valve cover/cam chain tensioner gaskets, an o-ring for the engine oil cooler, and probably a new PCV hose & valve. I've spoken with some mechanics around the Mobile/Pensacola area where I live, and they want to charge around $2000-2500 to do everything, which I'm sure is the "book price", and entirely too high for the work that it needs. So are their any enthusiasts, DIYers, or good independent mechanics around the Mobile/Daphne/Fairhope/Pensacola area that I should be speaking to? I need to get my car fixed because oil is dripping onto the exhaust manifold, and the water pump has a decent-sized leak. I'm tired of leaving my car at independent mechanics that employ this "book price" scam, and I need to get my car back on the road.

Thanks!
 

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I wouldn't call shop rate a scam. It's a way to keep mechanics/shops honest and competitive with each other. Where a shop can stick it to you is if you don't know what the book calls for in time. The book rate for time is set for each job. The other place they can stick it to you in cost of parts. I usually do ally own maintenance but from time to time I use a shop since to cost of specialized tooling and how often I will have to do the job isn't worth it to me. I'd do the work for you but I still charge people book rate for work in my backyard shop with a lift. The diois I only charge 50 an hour and people have to buy there own parts.
 

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The book puts hours as follows.
Timeing belt replacement 4.6 hrs
Water Pump 5.2 hrs
Can seal call for 4.9 one bank 5.2 for both.
PCV valve and hose is 1.1 hrs.
Valve cover calls for 1.4 for left .9 for right. You didn't mention which one was leaking.
Total hrs is 21.5 hrs most shops charge 100 an hour. Total for labor is 2150.00
No here is when you are with this. This is totally inline with charging some one but if a shop or I were charging you I would work out to.
Timeing belt 4.6 hrs
Water pump .6 hrs
Can seals 3.3 hrs.
PCV 1.1 hrs
Valve covers I would only change side leaking. Let's say both 1 hr.
Total 10.6 hrs at 100 it's $1060 plus parts why the difference. Water pump and cam seals require time belt to be removed so 4.6 hrs has already been done.
 
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