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Thread: Thoughts on PPI.

  1. #1
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    Thoughts on PPI.

    Hey Guys,

    I recently acquired an Ď02 C32 which I am very happy with. Prior to purchasing the car I paid for a PPI, they reported back with a few minor things. I received all the records on the car since the original owner and could not find a record for the plugs and wires. The car is currently at the shop getting the parts swapped out in addition to new fluids. Shortly after dropping my car off this morning the svc advisor calls me and states the valve cover gaskets are leaking badly and that it would be wise to replace along with the plugs/wires to save on labor. I told him to go ahead with the job.

    Iím kind of ticked off there was no mention of this on the PPI report. The svc advisor at the shop I have it at said because my car has an SC it would of required more time for them to remove the top parts and spot the leak which they obviously did not do. Is this something you guys would expect when paying for a PPI? There were also a few other minor things they made no mention of (torn boot..).

    Iím thinking about calling them out on this, I hoped they would be thorough for a PPI. I still would of bought the car as all my prior MBs needed new valve cover gaskets at some point, but I think itís besides the point. Iím interested to hear your thoughts.

    Cheers,

    Rob

  2. #2
    E500E Guru maw1124's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    Your PPI cost should be deducted from the cost of the work. Seems to me it wasn't worth the paper it was written on. I have a S/C car, and I can spot a valve cover leak with my phone flashlight (front banks, not rear). I'm not sure you have to do much disassembly to spot a valve cover leak. And a torn boot is as obvious as it seems. So I'd call them on it, but there's an easy fix, and you're already paying for the PPI in the work anyway.

    Cheers,

    maw

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  4. #3

    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    How much was the PPI?

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    Senior Member S70/2's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    If they weren't obvious leaks without removing multiple components, it seems reasonable to be overlooked on a normal PPI. If the rear suspension was held in with self tapping screws that may be a bit more upsetting
    Last edited by S70/2; 2 Weeks Ago at 03:33 PM.

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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    The PPI was performed in NC where I acquired the car before driving it back up here. I reside in VA, and it’s being serviced at a shop in my neck of the woods. They found the leak shortly after I dropped it off. I guess it boils down to the amount of time and components that need to be removed to spot a gasket leak on a C32. This is the first one I owned, I do believe the shop in NC was not very thorough in their overall inspection and spent about an hour going over the entire car.

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  9. #6
    Senior Member S70/2's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    How much did they charge you for the PPI?

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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    You may have done this before PPI, if so ignore. When I have a PPI done on any car, I spend at least a week prior looking at all relevant/credible sources (for example this forum for E500E models or A/C/W124 models in general) including recalls, "how to" sections, personal blogs etc. and I look for weak spots and known poor design/engineering issues. I then take that and add it to a list of things I would have done on any car (e.g. compression, suspension, accident check, paint meter etc.) and I create a list. In the end my lists are not that long and they are basically made up of standard stuff that would be really expensive to fix + known weak spots on that specific model. For example on an E320 W124 it would include wiring harness, head gasket etc.
    I have never asked to have valve cover gasket checked (unless it was known weakness) but I would expect someone to pick up a valve cover gasket leak if leak was somewhat obvious.

  11. #8
    E500E Guru maw1124's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    The sad thing is a lot of shops look at a PPI as quick and easy money. This is worse when the car is headed out of state and not likely to return (less future business = less accountability). It is what it is. I wouldn’t bother going back to them in another state. There is at least the theoretical possibility that the leak sprung and the boot tore once you started driving the car. More good news: (1) you’ll likely do that valve cover gasket again (I think I’m on #3 on my S55); and (2) dealers are known to tear boots on purpose while doing other work (another freeby to keep you coming back).

    Hell, a local dealer gave my E46M a clean bill of health when I first got it, and I knew for a fact some things needed addressing. The tech was obviously not interested in really looking it over. No harm, no foul, the car was still under warranty and the service manager is a friend (who was out that day). So needless to say it all got done anyway under warranty. It happens.

    Charge it to the game. Every time I do the valve cover gaskets in the S55, I get a free peak inside the engine. Last time it looked like this...

    maw
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    Quote Originally Posted by maw1124 View Post
    The sad thing is a lot of shops look at a PPI as quick and easy money. This is worse when the car is headed out of state and not likely to return (less future business = less accountability). It is what it is. I wouldn’t bother going back to them in another state. There is at least the theoretical possibility that the leak sprung and the boot tore once you started driving the car. More good news: (1) you’ll likely do that valve cover gasket again (I think I’m on #3 on my S55); and (2) dealers are known to tear boots on purpose while doing other work (another freeby to keep you coming back).

    Hell, a local dealer gave my E46M a clean bill of health when I first got it, and I knew for a fact some things needed addressing. The tech was obviously not interested in really looking it over. No harm, no foul, the car was still under warranty and the service manager is a friend (who was out that day). So needless to say it all got done anyway under warranty. It happens.

    Charge it to the game. Every time I do the valve cover gaskets in the S55, I get a free peak inside the engine. Last time it looked like this...

    maw
    I agree w/ you. Performing a PPI is the icing on the cake for most shops. I honestly was a bit shocked when they did not make any mention of the valve cover gaskets. I contacted the shop down in NC and the manager swore up and down it was not leaking 300 miles ago. He said the guy that sold it to me must have cleaned the area prior to the PPI which is complete bs. I would of preferred he be honest with me and admit to the fact that they were not very extensive.

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  15. #10
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    Now that cameras are small and ubiquitous (translation: cell phone)... doesn't seem like an unreasonable request to have the tech snap some photos during the PPI. Of course they'd probably charge you an extra hour labor, lol.

    Dave M.
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  17. #11
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    Re: Thoughts on PPI.

    The PPI is only as good as the knowledge of the tech performing it. In my experience there are not many shops that know these old W124's. When I was looking for a cab I paid for three PPI's for east coast cars. None of them convinced me they knew what they were looking at.

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