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Old 08-24-2020, 09:09 PM   #21
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These days the service people know little or nothing about fixing cars. Unlike when the service manager was a promoted senior mechanic.
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Old 08-24-2020, 09:14 PM   #22
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Sounds good; so you have a Ford ESP? Mesquite a bit the other way, yet not too far...and there is a Walmart. Best of luck getting a quick fix.
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Old 08-24-2020, 09:26 PM   #23
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These days the service people know little or nothing about fixing cars. Unlike when the service manager was a promoted senior mechanic.
That’s because there are few mechanics anymore. Most technicians are incapable of doing anything but plug a computer into the OBD port and change out parts or assemblies. If the vehicle doesn’t set a code, many of them are clueless. I had a service writer recently tell me a relay was the same thing as a fuse. In January I had to purchase a new truck because 3-1/2 months of in and out of the service department due to intermittent starting and other problems could not be diagnosed, and “it will not Set a code.” And here I thought that when you purchased a new vehicle the purchase included an “implied expectation” that if something went wrong, the manufacturer or its agents would be able to diagnose and fix the deficiency. That is definitely not reality.
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Old 08-24-2020, 11:17 PM   #24
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My wife has a friend whose husband (now deceased) taught diesel mechanics, and he expressed great frustration that the students in latter years showed no motivation to actually learn.

Another thing: back when my wife and I went to high school, the schools offered shop classes. Kids learned to work on engines, do carpentry, and do other practical things. There were home economics classes too. Nowadays it seems like most high schools don't teach those useful skills which lay the groundwork for future mechanics' learning, so kids come into those programs with less realistic concepts of what they will be doing and how much they need to apply themselves.

I seem to recall that the first year or so of 3.5L ecoboosts had a problem from the intake air being made too cold, causing condensation, and the solution was to make something (the turbo? I forget) less efficient so there wouldn't be condensation. But I imagine they'd sorted that out before the 2013s, right?
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Old 08-25-2020, 05:53 AM   #25
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SeldomSeen,
When all this is resolved, allow me to suggest that both you and your son purchase an OBD Bluetooth code reader. This is a $20 device that plugs into your OnBoardDiagnostics port and sends a signal to your smart phone that shows what code that "Wrench" symbol represents.
It won't show non-code issues, of course, but it at least it lets you know what the tech will see at a dealer, and would let you know whether it seems safe to keep going or not.

Unfortunately it has become the norm for service departments to offer dates two weeks into the future, even to travelers in distress. We've had that from Thunder Bay to Rock Springs, Wyoming. Let us know what the problem turns out to be.
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Old 08-25-2020, 06:54 AM   #26
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For what it is worth, for both my Tacoma & F 150, I've had much better luck with smaller town dealers than those in big cities for walk in service. Most of mine has been for routine service while on the road, but the 2 week waits have all been in large dealerships.
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Old 08-25-2020, 07:20 AM   #27
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SeldomSeen,
When all this is resolved, allow me to suggest that both you and your son purchase an OBD Bluetooth code reader. This is a $20 device that plugs into your OnBoardDiagnostics port and sends a signal to your smart phone that shows what code that "Wrench" symbol represents.
It won't show non-code issues, of course, but it at least it lets you know what the tech will see at a dealer, and would let you know whether it seems safe to keep going or not.

Unfortunately it has become the norm for service departments to offer dates two weeks into the future, even to travelers in distress. We've had that from Thunder Bay to Rock Springs, Wyoming. Let us know what the problem turns out to be.
Bill
As most folks know, once the local dealership where you bought your vehicle tracks your subsequent service. When they “think” you are due for an oil change or whatever they send a message telling you how important it is to come in. On my 2012 Highlander I got this message and called for an appointment. 2 1/2 weeks. I took the Highlander in the next day and found the General Manager. I let him know what I thought of his scheduling practice and reminded him of the several other dealerships in the area, one in my home town. About 45 minutes later I was on my way home with fresh oil, tire rotation 15% discount for being an old geezer. I vote with my $ and I’m not short on anecdotes, adverbs and adjectives. I have a regular service guy now who fishes catfish tournaments, he takes good care of me and always has an update on his adventures.
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Old 08-25-2020, 07:37 AM   #28
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As most folks know, once the local dealership where you bought your vehicle tracks your subsequent service. When they “think” you are due for an oil change or whatever they send a message telling you how important it is to come in. On my 2012 Highlander I got this message and called for an appointment. 2 1/2 weeks. I took the Highlander in the next day and found the General Manager. I let him know what I thought of his scheduling practice and reminded him of the several other dealerships in the area, one in my home town. About 45 minutes later I was on my way home with fresh oil, tire rotation 15% discount for being an old geezer. I vote with my $ and I’m not short on anecdotes, adverbs and adjectives. I have a regular service guy now who fishes catfish tournaments, he takes good care of me and always has an update on his adventures.
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Hi: Iowa Dave... I've heard of voting with your wall eye before. Last time I used our local dealers "Quick lane", they asked me to come back at 4:30. Not necessary as the oil change was done by then... somewhere else. Alf
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Old 08-25-2020, 07:44 AM   #29
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Turns out that the intrepid travelers were able to talk to the service dept at the Ford dealer in Mesquite NV. He said, " bring it over, and we will get you in and solve the problem. I know what it is". (Don't you love it when you finally find the right person?)

I think it is likely to be the throttle valve body once AGAIN. The Transmission Lead Frame issue seems to cause a sudden downshifting, which is a problem we have not had...yet. Its not a recall, but a extended warranty issue. We did take care of the other transmission recall last year.

I guess the thing that surprised me was the standard rote answers we got from people in service departments who were not willing to even talk about helping someone from out of town. ( I'm hoping when people field calls like this its just a training problem... )

Praying that they make it safely without too many difficulties, and then are able to find a little downtime in the desert and mountains before they have to head back to work.
Hi: SeldomSeen... Sure hope the dealer gets to the bottom of the problem quickly. These new vehicles are just to complicated for the "Parts changers"!!! Alf
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:17 AM   #30
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My wife has a friend whose husband (now deceased) taught diesel mechanics, and he expressed great frustration that the students in latter years showed no motivation to actually learn.

Another thing: back when my wife and I went to high school, the schools offered shop classes. Kids learned to work on engines, do carpentry, and do other practical things. There were home economics classes too. Nowadays it seems like most high schools don't teach those useful skills which lay the groundwork for future mechanics' learning, so kids come into those programs with less realistic concepts of what they will be doing and how much they need to apply themselves.

I seem to recall that the first year or so of 3.5L ecoboosts had a problem from the intake air being made too cold, causing condensation, and the solution was to make something (the turbo? I forget) less efficient so there wouldn't be condensation. But I imagine they'd sorted that out before the 2013s, right?
Mike , I graduated in 1967 and never took one shop class in high school , they didn’t even offer any shop classes unless you consider computer programming a shop class ?
So the trend away from hands on mechanical skills is not a new phenomenon .
I was a vocational instructor for 35 years and its’s really hard to convince young adults to learn a trade that leads to hard , manual , sometimes dangerous work often outside in the elements and with little public respect when they can sit behind a computer on a soft chair , ‘ pushing buttons and look out their air conditioned office window for the same or more money . IE: Everybody wants their car fixed NOW but no one wants to do the work or pay for the required skills.

The kids today did not create this problem , we did by belittling honest , hard , getting yourself dirty & sweaty work

My silly rant is over !!
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:34 AM   #31
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Hi Steve
We had shop classes in our high school but things were indeed winding down. A number of years ago my brother who was a welder for John Deere, P&H Cranes, Universal Fitness Equipment (stainless) and the Iowa DOT decided he wanted a home welder. With some research he found some used ones. He drove to Chicago where a fellow had a warehouse full of shop equipment. The City of Chicago Schools had taken all of the shop equipment out of all but a few high schools. They sold it at auction and apparently this guy bought most of it. My brother bought a pretty good sized stick welder that was like new. He ran a big service out to his garage shop and welds stuff for me when I need it done. I predict there will eventually be a resurgence in technical shop classes. At least I hope so.
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:44 AM   #32
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Scary business, being far from home and towing and your tow breaks down. What to do? Knowing nobody, the safest move is, I think, to take it to the service department of the nearest dealership. At least there you can rely upon a fair assumption that they will not size you up as a pigeon.

On our big one-way move across the country towing when we got to Indiana I had to exit the interstate because my SUV engine had begun to run very badly. Had no clue what was happening but knew for sure with this going on we were not going to make it to New Mexico. Since before our departure I had the thing tuned up this was a complete surprise.

Thirty miles off the interstate (?) at around 3 pm I found a dealership and pulled it in seeking help. The busy but kindly service manager assessed my dilemma, said to dehitch, and drove it in. Half an hour later he came over smiling. Problem solved. He showed me a huge nest some animal back home had made inside the air filter.

Hope your issue gets solved as easy.
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Old 08-25-2020, 08:59 AM   #33
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Scary business, being far from home and towing and your tow breaks down. What to do? Knowing nobody, the safest move is, I think, to take it to the service department of the nearest dealership. At least there you can rely upon a fair assumption that they will not size you up as a pigeon.

On our big one-way move across the country towing when we got to Indiana I had to exit the interstate because my SUV engine had begun to run very badly. Had no clue what was happening but knew for sure with this going on we were not going to make it to New Mexico. Since before our departure I had the thing tuned up this was a complete surprise.

Thirty miles off the interstate (?) at around 3 pm I found a dealership and pulled it in seeking help. The busy but kindly service manager assessed my dilemma, said to dehitch, and drove it in. Half an hour later he came over smiling. Problem solved. He showed me a huge nest some animal back home had made inside the air filter.

Hope your issue gets solved as easy.
You live in New Mexico? I bet it was a pack rat that caused your problem. After reading on this forum, I now know why people leave their hoods open at night with a light on. The nests and chewed wiring.


As RV travelers, we tend to see more of the country than most and run across potential problems that the locals are already well aware of. You leave home to enjoy the trip only to have a breakdown due to something you would have never thought of.

And it's not just critters. We went to Chilliwack to pick up our trailer in January, 2017. In Seattle, after staying in a hotel for the night, we woke to find a thick sheet of ice covering our truck. Oh well, it'll melt. Geez! When that thing came loose on the highway, I thought it would take the windshield out! Living in Houston Texas, I would have never thought about it doing that.
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Old 08-25-2020, 10:09 AM   #34
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SeldomSeen,
When all this is resolved, allow me to suggest that both you and your son purchase an OBD Bluetooth code reader. This is a $20 device that plugs into your OnBoardDiagnostics port and sends a signal to your smart phone that shows what code that "Wrench" symbol represents.
It won't show non-code issues, of course, but it at least it lets you know what the tech will see at a dealer, and would let you know whether it seems safe to keep going or not.

Unfortunately it has become the norm for service departments to offer dates two weeks into the future, even to travelers in distress. We've had that from Thunder Bay to Rock Springs, Wyoming. Let us know what the problem turns out to be.
Bill
Great idea- gonna order one right now.
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Old 08-25-2020, 10:40 AM   #35
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You live in New Mexico? I bet it was a pack rat that caused your problem. After reading on this forum, I now know why people leave their hoods open at night with a light on. The nests and chewed wiring.


As RV travelers, we tend to see more of the country than most and run across potential problems that the locals are already well aware of. You leave home to enjoy the trip only to have a breakdown due to something you would have never thought of.

And it's not just critters. We went to Chilliwack to pick up our trailer in January, 2017. In Seattle, after staying in a hotel for the night, we woke to find a thick sheet of ice covering our truck. Oh well, it'll melt. Geez! When that thing came loose on the highway, I thought it would take the windshield out! Living in Houston Texas, I would have never thought about it doing that.
That’s why you never follow directly behind a semi trailer after an ice or a heavy snow storm
When the ice slides off the roof of a semi trailer , lands on your hood , then goes through your windshield and lands in your lab , you learn quickly
In the days before vehicles had windshield washer we drove around carrying jugs of warm water which we kept in front of the heater outlet
In the winter when the windshield got coated with snow , ice and salt film , the guy in the passenger seat would pour a cup of water out of the jug , open the window and with the wipers running , throw the cup of luke warm water across the windshield so you could see to drive .
I use to marvel at people from the south who would come up North in the Winter and put bags of sand in the trunk of their front wheel drive vehicles to improve traction
Like anything there is a learning curve and I am sure I would need to learn how to survive / drive in a hot climate
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Old 08-25-2020, 11:19 AM   #36
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Years ago I saw one of those giant, very thick slabs of ice come flying off a semi going the other direction. That really got my attention. Thank goodness no one was behind him as it would have been a major tragedy. I now think about that quite often in the winter.
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Old 08-25-2020, 04:27 PM   #37
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Years ago I saw one of those giant, very thick slabs of ice come flying off a semi going the other direction. That really got my attention. Thank goodness no one was behind him as it would have been a major tragedy. I now think about that quite often in the winter.
My daughter and her family left for home after an Xmas visit in a rental car and returned 15 mins later - just as they merged onto the freeway an ice sheet left the top of a pickup canopy and broke the side of the rental car bumper! But the rental car folks just gave them a new vehicle and sent them on their way, luckily. And luckily it didn't hit the windshield. Now I always give extra room in between me and the vehicle in front in icy weather.
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Old 08-25-2020, 04:40 PM   #38
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When I was a yute, we would have people come in for gasoline that were heavily iced up and it Was late in the afternoon. We would have them drive into the wash house and we would hose the headlights down and clean up the road grime on all the lights and lenses. No charge. I remember I got a 50 cent piece as a tip once. When you worked for 75
Cents an hour, 50 cents looked pretty good. Second nature here not to get behind a snow covered truck. And if you can get her in the garage, better do it.
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Old 08-25-2020, 05:58 PM   #39
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............But I will tell you that Brian Auto parts and Service in Loa, Utah is a very fine repair shop with fair prices and excellent mechanics. They have a tow truck too. Call them. Describe your problem, trust them. If anybody can get you up and running it’s that shop. 1-435-836-2343. Let me know how you come out. And I’ll tell you how I know.
Iowa Dave

I knew I'd heard that town name before, though we've never been there. Our big bucket-list trip to the Utah NP's and SP's was going to be this year (but it's 2020, the year that wasn't!), and our exit path from Capitol Reef NP would take us west on UT-24, right through Loa. Good info to know, Dave. Thanks.
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Old 08-25-2020, 06:26 PM   #40
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We broke down and got towed to Loa. Mr. Brian worked on our car. Loa was having some kind of heritage days with a parade and a rodeo. Brian was the parade marshal and skipped the parade to work on our car. We walked around town and looked at the pioneer exhibits. An old boy showed the kids how they branded cattle out on the range and let them design a brand with their initials and put it on a display board. He showed my son how a Mormon horse hobble went on and off. One of the sons took us to Richfield where we rented a Taurus and based out of Panquich, we saw all the sights we had planned, went trout fishing and caught a bunch, went horseback riding etc. I gave the trout to a luckless woman and her daughter and told her to tell her husband she caught them. The car repaired, we headed back home without problems. We had the same caliber of vacation as if we would have had we not broken down. I even bought a discontinued Lodge 16” 38 lb Dutch oven which I still have and use in a small town hardware store. You can see why I’m so high on this town and the fine folks we met there. I’m reasonably sure his sons now run the business and carry on the honest, dedicated service to locals and tourists alike.
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