180 bucks to fix a brake line?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Mon Rominee, Jun 23, 2008.

  1. That's right. That is what my mechanic is charging me to replace one front to back brakeline in my 96 Cherokee.

    I had my brake pedal drop to the floor this morning after I gassed up, which put the koibosh on me getting to work on time...so now I am here late (no big deal) but I just got off the phone and that was my total bill...and I am kinda concerned.

    I know the parts prolly add up to around 40-50 bucks tops (be it him having to replace the metal tubing and the end rubber hose, and the fittings and whatever lost fluids) but 180 bucks? Am I missing something here??? Is this process really that labor intensive? I mean I trust the guy as I have all my work done there, but this one leaves me scratching my head...

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Croox

    Croox Guest

    Sep 16, 2007
    South Side Chicago
    cleanup of the brake area and bleeding the brakes on a car is a giant pain in the ass, and if brake fluid got on your pads (or shoes) they are garbage.
     
  3. Fontaine

    Fontaine

    Apr 27, 2006
    +1, while in high school i worked at a garage, and cleaning up this mess is the low point of the job, right next to taking out a transmission and cleaning the mess that that thing leaves behind.
     
  4. Ok, well the Jeep went in 6 months ago for a total rebuild of the major points of the brake system..rear cylinders, new drums, shoes, etc...you woulda thought that might have been addressed then (unless it just didn't warrant it at the time) but this is just bad timing is all, and I feared the bill was excessive.

    Thanks for your thoughts thusfar. They are greatly appreciated.
     
  5. Croox

    Croox Guest

    Sep 16, 2007
    South Side Chicago
    its a jeep? hell the brake line could have been 100 bucks. look at the repair order and the invoice when you get it it will have a complete item brake down and you can see what cost what.
     
  6. Yeah, I fully intend to , it's just the intial "shock" vs. what I had guessed in my head was staggeringly off... but I'll see when I get there...
     
  7. How important are brakes to you? :)
     
  8. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    This job can take anywhere from 1-2 hours for an experienced professional because the reason the lines fail is the lines corrode and become brittle making them susceptible to blowout (this happened to me just a week ago and I barely escaped death! :eek:). Removing the corroded lines from their fittings is usually impossible without cutting them requiring all new fittings at the end points. Then there is the bleeding of the brakes when finished and the cleanup that was already mentioned.


    Typical bill is about $120 for labor and $60 for parts.


    $180 is perfectly reasonable.
     
  9. 69nites

    69nites Guest

    Jul 11, 2006
    Chicago
    i have never purchased a prebent brake line myself.

    you buy it in the specified length and bend to fit...
     
  10. hbarcat, I'm glad you're on the other side of that ok...and I thank you all again for informing me of just what goes into this procedure. I was sure it was a p.i.t.a. to repair, just didn't appreciate the scope of the repair.

    My mechanic is really tops, and as said, I get all my service there...I just didn't anticipate this...

    So yeah, I thank you again!
     
  11. Croox

    Croox Guest

    Sep 16, 2007
    South Side Chicago
    actually from the manufacturer they are already bent and ready for install, brake lines are not like heater hose they are high pressure rubber/metal lines, there is no way in hell i would try to bend and make them my self. that would be a safety hazard.
     
  12. alembic76407

    alembic76407

    Apr 29, 2004
    Oklahoma
    $180, Hell thats only 3 tanks of gas
     
  13. 69nites

    69nites Guest

    Jul 11, 2006
    Chicago
    there's only 2 places pre-bent brake lines are used. at the factory where your car is made and for warranty fixes on brake lines which very very rarely happen. we're talking defective brake line here.

    if you've had a brake line replaced it was most likely bent by the tech that installed it.

    and I wouldn't be too worried about it. It's something they teach you for your ASE cert.
     
  14. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois

    It's safe IF you know what to use and know how to put them together and install them. It's essential to get the proper high pressure brake lines and use flare end fittings and have experience with bending lines and how to route them in proper mounting points. But, you're right that it's a real safety hazard to do improperly.
     
  15. RWP

    RWP

    Jul 1, 2006
    Do the job yourself and after you are done I bet you would agree it was worth $180.00. :D Working on cars is always more of a pain in the ass than you expect it to be. Frozen nuts, other crap you have to remove to get to the thing you are working on etc.
     
  16. 69nites

    69nites Guest

    Jul 11, 2006
    Chicago
    I almost always finish under book time.

    the only exception is transmission work. I always seem to get screwed on that.

    it's the specialty tools that cost so much money that make me advise people to not work on their own cars. I've probably spent enough money on tools to buy a couple cars with nice warranties lol.

    but on topic the price is right that's about what you'll be paying anywhere.
     
  17. Croox

    Croox Guest

    Sep 16, 2007
    South Side Chicago
    I've only ever seen pre-bent brake lines but then I been working in dealerships for 7 years now. I think the adding of the stress from bending the metal brake lines would be bad and cause it to fail.
     
  18. 69nites

    69nites Guest

    Jul 11, 2006
    Chicago
    yeah dealer work is a lot different than your average autoshop.

    those steel lines can handle way more pressure than needed for braking. The only way you're going to fatigue the steel is if you bend back and forth or make a radius too small.

    for a 96 Cherokee good luck even finding a pre-bent line.
     
  19. Croox

    Croox Guest

    Sep 16, 2007
    South Side Chicago
    alright i understand, and hell if I still worked at a Chrysler dealer I could find one! :p I don't think they are obsolete yet.
     
  20. XtreO

    XtreO Guest

    Jan 2, 2008
    Norway
    I'm not very potent in English, so I don't really get what the discussion/problem is, but if it is what I think it is (break fluid not creating pressure, rendering breaks useless) it's one extermely **** thing fix (personal experience :( ). So I agree, I'd gladly pay 180$ to have it fixed if it was on a car used much.