sb-alto

Alto 04 - Maintenance and Service details

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Recreating this thread as the previous one was lost.

Alto LX 2004

Color : Midnight black

No of service : 6 - (3 free+3 paid)

Accident repairs: None

Accident History : None

Repair service : 1

Modification : None.

Last service : 10673km back (1 year)

Battery : Exide Matrix -MF

The troubles faced initially

1. Vibration in 1st and 2nd gear

2. Brake problem (squeaking sounds and longer stopping distance)

3. Suspension noise and rough ride

4. Huge rusting below battery case (due to water leak of previous battery)

5. Tyre noise

6. Tyre became hard and is 6 years old.

7. Gear oil was 5 years old.( harder shifts)

8. Delay ignition

9. Coolant at low level and color degraded ( although no engine overheating)

10. Old engine oil.

Pics :

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Service report :

Parts changed :

1. Engine oil - Gulf 20w50 SM -2.7 litre- Rs 630

2. Brake overhaul - with new brake oil and pads - Rs560

3. Gear oil - Rs 422

4. Coolant - Rs 300

5. Spark plugs (3)- Rs 457

6. Suspension arms/ struts/ bush/ springs replace - Rs 1109

7. Clutch pressure plate replace - Rs 1890

8. Nuts / bulb / grease / pins/ etc - Rs 100

9. Rust repair- changed plates and repaint - Rs 3350

Labour charges : Rs 3509 ( including paid service Rs 690)

Total ~ Rs 13000 with tax etc

Service day images :

Machino Techno Service - Huge MASS

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Service experience  will be updated shortly

Customer lounge AC

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Underbody checking zone ( Nice )

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Service experience :

Fair. I am not too happy with the labour charge.

I would rather make important points that needs to be taken account of :

Advantages of MASS ( a big MASS to be more specific)

1. Less time required for service

2. Availability of all parts.( even discontinued car parts )

3. Availability of all technical devices required for checks.

4. Ample no of workers and Service Assistant

5. Good waiting hall ( AC / tv / Internet facility)

6. Spare prices are cheap.

7. Availability of Technical Adviser

8. Specific Job card ( according to customers need )

Disadvantages of MASS

1. Labour charge too high.

2. Not allowing to see service work. ( smaller MASS sometimes allow)

3. Tends to convince customer to do more than required.

4. Repair work is not at all cheap ( body work/ painting )

5. MASS engine oil is bad.

After service pics will be uploaded soon

sb-alto2010-05-17 18:53:46

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Good work MASS.

And actually that's the huge +++++ for MS's huge Sales charts & Best CSI Ratings.

So, after Brakes & Suspension Overhaul, How are these doing now ??

And also after the Spark Plugs Replacement, how's the Acceleration & FE now ?? You'll definitely see Improvement in these..

However, Labour Charges seems to be pretty high, but in Longeivity/Reliabilty & Quality of the job/work done, they'll prove the worth of Each buck spend. 

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@Nishu :

The problems that I faced is taken care of. There is not a single problem left unseen or unfixed.

I have driven the car just 9km back to my home. Brakes are fine now. Solid stopping power and no sound. Suspension has softened and ride improved. With new tyres within 2 days it will improve further.

Ignition is spontaneous. Acceleration is good and change in FE after Airfilter and Spark plug replace is still not noticable in that small run. Will report later with a full tank method.

Whatever you might say, a labor charge of 250 for a bulb change or 176 for 2 nut change is ridiculous.

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Whatever you might say' date=' a labor charge of 250 for a bulb change or 176 for 2 nut change is ridiculous.
[/quote']

Really dude..

8-years back, I also have same kind of experience with the Kinetic ASS, when they demanded Rs.70 labour charge for fitting Indicator Buzzer Chime worth Rs.20 on my Sis's Kinetic Nova.

All Service Stations(may be ASS or Other Private Local ones) Workers/officials always thinks that all Well-dressed & Sophisticated Guys/Men/babus coming to them are just the fools & usually try to Charge & teach them very Irrationally.

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The last time I serviced my car, the labor charge was not this high. It was around Rs90 for each part replaced or repaired.

How can Authorized service centers charge irrationally ? They have a fixed charge sheet and tax invoice. It is not like that local Garages that charge different for different people.

This is the first time I am facing this cost problem. Even in last 2 paid service labor charge was not that high. Rs550 or 540 for entire service which included other jobs than mentioned in the booklet.

I think I will change my mind of the impression that Maruti Service is cheap.

**EDIT**

Moreover I did not like the convincing part. Seen this in my case as well as others. They add more jobs than the car needs or the customer specifies.

sb-alto2010-05-18 05:33:01

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Considering the age of the car it looks in excellent condition. The part's changed are quiet a lot, esp the suspension, brake pad's, replaced rusted plates, clutch overhaul, etc with the oil's change. Must say Rs.13000 is a little steep for an Alto. I think as the car age's no matter how much TLC you may lavish on it, it starts to guzzle cash at service if you want it to run like new. What's the total mileage the car's run? May that will give us an idea if it's money well spent.

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Oh I missed that part.

Km run ~ 51000 and Air filter is also changed. I missed these two crucial points. Thanks DD for reminding.

That clutch overhaul was costly and add to it that stupid labor charge which I felt excessive. Had it been a smaller MAS total cost would not have been more than 8000~9000.

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Photo updates

Rust check

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New engine clamp

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Rear Brake change

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Suspension arms ( left / right )

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Oil filter

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Rubber mounts in many places

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A 16W bulb replaced

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Brake oil changed

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Seat folding clip replaced

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Vacuum cleaned boot

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sb-alto2010-05-18 10:55:50

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Good job done sb-alto and good riddance of the problem areas. The rust repair has cost you something like Rs 3500/- (incl taxes).

Overall, I feel that the balance Rs 10000/- or so spent on other problem areas  should be reasonable, as these were all (including gear oil,brake oil and engine oil) serving you beyond their specified life and are routine expenses.

The labour charge is too high.

As regards the clutch,  51,000 km is too small a mileage for such a change.Maybe you have to improve your driving style.At lower speeds change over to a lower gear and while driving minimise use of the clutch. As soon as the gear is changed the clutch pedal must be set free.The left foot should not press the clutch all the while.

Or sorry if I am wrong! Like maybe your driving is decent, but in some cases the clutch gives way prematurely.

And for the struts and suspension spares, I am sure the Kolkata roads must share all the blame.

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Yes I am shocked about that labor charge

I am driving the car for 2 years now and previously it was chauffeur driven. I will try to find out more accurately about my driving style. I do not use clutch pedal as footrest while driving but for the low gear slow movement I will take more care. Thanks for your advice. I will give this a check smiley14.gif

This car has done bad roads like a SUV and it will as this is our only car and is used for tours in distant places having poor road conditions. I stay in Salt lake and try to use poor roads as less as possible. May be the old tyres are somewhat responsible.

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Even I have had high labour charge feeling when I recently changed the suspension as it was making clicking noise and few other rust treatments but a bill of 15k is too high given that the resale value of my car will be only 70k .

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Hey Sb-Alto' date=' what's happened to the 'Autocar' sticker on the front license plate?

[/quote']

Actually that was not a good quality sticker. I made another two sticker which I will receive soon. I will update. The last one got washed during the rains. This time it will be a waterproof sticker

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@AM :

Vibration in 1st and 2nd gear was due to clutch wear and old gear oil. After the clutch overhaul and new gear oil everything is fine

My tyres are as old as the car itself (6years) and it is too old to run. Tyres have turned hard and has visible cracks. I have already decided to change these tyres but that D-day is getting delayed every time due to some other works. My bad. I will change it as early as possible.

Ignition delay was due to old spark plugs and one plug wiring. The ignition wire heads are cleaned and spark plugs replaced. Using NGK normal plugs this time. The replaced one was NGK platinum(45000km life). This one will go for around 20000km more. Did not get the platinum plugs.

For the MASS jobs done : refer to page 1. I guess I have covered all points.

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sb-alto the car may be fit and fine now.Do keep an eye and make the oil changes at the recommended periods.Would suggest you to make a file, store all the bills to keep a record of the repair history of the car. I usually record the kms at which oil change is being done behind the bill, so I know when in future it needs the next change.

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Anjan Sir,

I have kept all the bills of each and every service but it is not organized as you pointed out. I keep the records in an Excel document (that even includes petrol records/FE/ km coverage per trip and service records) but I guess I will have to dedicate some time in properly arranging those according to dates and make a record.

The car is absolutely fine now and feels as good as new.

The under body corrosion treatment was done a year and half back (along with exhaust painting), but i have recently found the layer thinning and showing bare metals. I was thinking of a DIY job of touching some certain areas with metal primer paint followed by actual paint. But I guess i need to be selective and cautious about the areas to be painted as joints to suspension can be jammed or areas around exhaust might get too hot. I might need your help.

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Anjan Sir' date='

I have kept all the bills of each and every service but it is not organized as you pointed out. I keep the records in an Excel document (that even includes petrol records/FE/ km coverage per trip and service records) but I guess I will have to dedicate some time in properly arranging those according to dates and make a record.

The car is absolutely fine now and feels as good as new.

The under body corrosion treatment was done a year and half back (along with exhaust painting), but i have recently found the layer thinning and showing bare metals. I was thinking of a DIY job of touching some certain areas with metal primer paint followed by actual paint. But I guess i need to be selective and cautious about the areas to be painted as joints to suspension can be jammed or areas around exhaust might get too hot. I might need your help.

[/quote']

Thanks sb-alto, you are welcome.The last time I took my Scorpio for servicing,  T.A.S.S. were canvassing for underbody coating (under the Mahindra brand name) with a rubberised compound that they showed me as done on the underbody of the Logan from the factory.They charge some Rs 4 to 5 K for the Scorpio, but for the Alto it may be much less.So if its really very serious later on you may think of it after further inquiries.

I did not get my SUV coated, as new factory paints are quite resistant to corrosion for at least four-five years in mainland areas like the place where I am in.

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Excellent review @sb-alto. Its a text book for Alto users. Hats off to

give a such a detailed review.

Thank you so much. I always try to share as much as possible for others to get help in need.

@Anjan Sir,

Last time I got my under-body coated, the cost was around Rs2000 and extra Rs 1500 for exhaust protection. The protective paint still exists but certain areas are now prone to corrosion. So was wondering whether to do it myself or re coat it again. The condition is not that bad, so as to get it coated immediately but some touch ups should help.

As the old saying goes "A stitch in time saves Nine"

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So, finally the paints have arrived. One black for the underbody, a metal primer and steel grey for some parts of the engine bay. The various areas showing metal is well within my reach and I felt that it would not be worth spending a good amount of money by getting it done from any workshop or MAS.

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The finalized process is :

1. Scrap off some old paints from those local areas using sand paper

2. Apply primer coat1- dry it-coat2-dry it again- coat 3.

3. Apply the paint -coat1 and coat2.

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I will use brushes of different sizes. Spray gun is not needed and can be risky. I do not want want to end up with paints in vital joints or on the CatCon. Brushes will be fine. Moreover there is no need for a super smooth finish for the under-body. So spray gun is not really necessary

I do not have any lifts or anything. Me and my Dad will do it together. I will slip under the car with a mattress and do the job. I have given it a mock try and it works. Gloves, swimming goggles, and a rain coat are three important things to wear to carry out that painting job.

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