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About AndyCheltenham1

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  1. I am a bit of a nerd in that I have kept a book of ALL the expenses I have had with my Lexus since buying it and have now decided to work out exactly how much I have spent on it over the years ( very sad ) and share it with you. I bought this 1993 LS400 on 11.12.07 for £2975 from a car dealer working from home with the mileage of 67255. I paid about £500 more than I wanted to pay but he would not reduce the price at all and as it had a full Lexus service history and had been serviced about 3 months previously and had a big file of receipts from Lexus and also a private plate (Irish) so I decided to buy it-I would rather pay more for a well sorted car than buy a cheaper car that needs work doing. The colour is white with the blue interior. The condition was immaculate with no marks inside or outside. The costs so far are as follows: Insurance £3378 (the most expensive being £421 and current being £236) Road Tax £2095 Servicing and Repairs £1866 MOT (10 times) £450 Tyres £883 Gearbox Service £159 2 Batteries £252 Wheel Refurbishment £400 Tint back windows £140 Repair front bumper £150 Spray front wing £180 Air Con top up(5 times) £180 Misc waxes etc £80 AA membership £700 Petrol £9442 TOTAL COST £20355 (mileage now 98417-67255 when bought=31162 miles done) So I have owned it now for 9.5 years and it has been ultra reliable and never let me down (well, it did on only one occasion when my battery suddenly failed and I had to get the AA out for that, but the battery was 7 years old so not unexpected). Apart from normal servicing the only real faults I have had are the blinking dash lights (repaired for £65), front bonnet strut replacement,repair front window that stuck in up position (£60),re hang the exhaust that was vibrating, weld exhaust leak at front and secure heat shields (£40),,respray front wing that was starting to rust (£180). I have taken it in for 10 MOT's and it failed on 2 occasions-once for a tyre (replaced with spare) and once for headlamp aim( adjusted by MOT station)-so it has never had to go back to an MOT station to have any work done, I have always left with a fresh MOT. When I bought the car I also bought 1litre of oil for topping up-I threw this away a few weeks ago as it was nearly 10 years old and unopened!! The car is still in a very tidy condition but now has the odd few marks on the body/bumpers and a tiny piece of rust at the top of one door.The cd player is not working but the radio and cassette player is. The temperature for air con is black (has been for a number of years now) and the sunroof does leak occasionally when it rains very hard (have tried a few times to sort it out but given up now). The work that probably does need doing now is the cambelt and replace spark plugs (both done about 12 years ago at 60000 miles) but as the car is still running perfectly I cannot justify spending large amounts of money on a car of this age and value. I think I have been lucky with the small amount of faults I have had in 31000 mile of motoring and intend keeping it until any major fault arises at which time I couldn't really justify spending large amounts of money on it-I would probably then try and find a mark 4 which everyone seems to rate as a much better car, but hopefully that wont be any time soon!!??
  2. Took the car to a local garage this morning and they welded both flanges no problem and also re-attached rear heat shields that were coming loose. Total price £40!! So both Powerflow agents I went to told me the flanges could not be welded and would have been happy to charge me £395-con artists. I will never go to a Powerflow agent again.
  3. Malc-the y pipe is perfectly ok, it is just the cat flanges that are the problem
  4. I have now got a slightly blowing exhaust. Took it to 2 exhaust centres ( both Powerflow agents) and the problem is the cat flanges that are rusty/ leaking. Have been quoted £395 for two cats and the y-pipe( seems you can't just replace cats/flanges on their own). Is there any cheaper way to go, ie filling them with exhaust paste or is that just a very temporary fix? Have read that the flanges can be welded, but not sure if you can successfully weld rusty flanges? I'm a bit worried that the lambda sensors could break when they take them off and that could add another expense on top of the £395!! Has anyone done any cheap fixes that have lasted a reasonable time or is the only way to pay £395 plus possibly more for lambda sensors?? They said there are two lambda sensors (one each side ) is that correct or are there anymore? The trouble is that I've owned this car for 9 years and so far have had only 3 faults ( failing dash lights, repaired for £50-drivers window failed, £60 to fix-cd player not working, not bothered to repair)-so when something like this happens I'm in shock at having to spend that amount on repairs, especially when the value of the car is not much more than that!! Any advice would be appreciated.
  5. I have now been reassured by the comments on here and will definitely buy one as they do sound brilliant ( I just wasn't too convinced from comments from random people on YouTube). Will go for the Britpart DA1239 that Shirish recommended as it looks really good quality.
  6. I would like to get one of these for emergencies but still a bit doubtful as to how good they are-I've seen a lot of reviews on YouTube and most were good but also a few dodgy reviews. I was looking in Halfords today and all of the "large" jump starters only do up to 3 litres so I still can't get my head around how such a tiny charger can jump start a 4 litre car?? I've had to call out the AA twice over the last 3 years for a flat battery, once for my Lexus and once for my Cadillac (4.9L) and on both occasions they initially brought out their big charger and it didn't stand a chance of starting either engine. When they put jump leads onto their engine they both jumped to life immediately-so even their professional charger couldn't start the engine. Will be interested to see how other people may get on with these small chargers.
  7. I bought an oil filter from a Lexus dealer a few months ago for £13.66 which is a lot more than a compatible would have cost. When I opened the box and the filter had a "made in China" label on it I was quite surprised that it wasn't made in Japan-I don't think I would buy a "genuine" oil filter again if they are sourcing their parts from China! I think the same is probably true of Lexus/Toyota batteries-you assume you are getting better quality, but are you if they are supplying batteries from Czech?? I think I would rather stick to a known quality brand like Varta/ Bosch rather than being sold an unknown brand made god knows where. My last battery was a Varta and lasted 8 years before it needed replacing..
  8. runsgrateasanut -not sure if it would do what you want. The stuff comes in a small can and has a foam piece on the end and you rub that foam piece on the rubber and the liquid comes through, but it can be quite greasy . You then leave it to dry for a short time.
  9. I use a Rubber Care Stick called "Gummi Pflege Stift" which you can get from Ebay or Amazon. The description of this says " Gummi Pflege provides long lasting protection against freezing for rubber seals in car doors,windows and also conditions helping to prolong the life of rubber seals against cold, heat and UV radiation from the sun". I use it in the winter to stop the doors jamming shut when really icy and it also helps if the rubbers are dry and brittle and need softening up again. it also gives a really nice looking shine as well.
  10. I personally think main dealer skills are massively over-rated and would much prefer my car was looked after and serviced by a competent and trusted independent mechanic. I think when your car is new it is good to have it serviced by a main dealer because of your warranty but when it is out of warranty I wouldn't entertain a main dealer. My experience of dealing with Lexus Cheltenham/Swindon in the past doesn't fill me with confidence-I asked both branches for a price to change the automatic transmission fluid on my car-both said it is a sealed unit and cannot be changed?! I took it to an automatic transmission specialist who changed the fluid. When my dash lights started going out ( a common fault) I was quoted a stupid price (£1000+) by lexus to replace the whole unit as they said it couldn't be repaired-yet I had it repaired for about £50(simply replacing a few diodes) and it is still working perfectly 3/4 years later. Lexus Cheltenham were also responsible for wrongly diagnosing a gearbox fault on a LS430 as being a wheel bearing noise-resulting in the gearbox totally failing. I have heard it said and I agree that main dealers don't employ mechanics, they employ "fitters"-as in that they are capable/willing to fit new parts but unable/unwilling to try and "repair" your car. Most independent mechanics have to have the skill to repair your car whereas main dealers will just replace parts without any concern for the cost. When I have my air con serviced/topped up I take it to an specialist as to me they are much more skilled than a main dealer is. My other car is a 1991 Cadillac and I regularly speak to a guy in USA who was the foreman of a cadillac dealership for a number of years before leaving and going independent and he is always advising people who have problems with their cadillacs to never ever go to a main dealer but go to a competent local garage who will most times be more capable of repairing your car and at a sensible price. I've had my Lexus 8 years now and I don't think Lexus could service it any better than my independent garage has in all this time??
  11. Adrian Flux insured my 1993 LS400 on a classic policy and that was a few years ago. Only downside to using a classic car policy is that if you insure it on a classic policy you will lose any no claims bonus you have already built up and when you go to insure another 'non classic' car later you will have Zero no claims bonus and have to start all over again and that can prove expensive.
  12. I've just had new front brake pads fitted and the passenger side was hardly worn down but the drivers side was worn down much more (enough for the red brake wear warning light to come on). The mechanic said that the caliper was seized on so I've been driving with one brake seized on for a while now-so I'm sure that hasn't helped my mpg too much!! I've had more brake dust on the drivers side front wheel than on the passenger side for a while now-so should have had that investigated before now, but too busy/lazy to find out why. It was an easy fix with a penetrating spray so will see how my mpg changes now.
  13. A lot of interesting comments here. My mpg is decreasing but thinking about it I haven't been on a long trip for maybe 6 months now, my longest trip has probably been about 10 miles, so I do need to take it on a good motorway run to clear the system out. When you look on here and see people getting 25+ mpg I hadn't really thought that that is on a run and when the car is used more regularly for longer journeys. I do about 3000 miles a year but put more miles on in the summer months. Thanks alien1974 for saying you get 16.8, and spacewagon52 for 18.2 mpg-that makes my 13mpg a bit more acceptable.The emmission figures on my mot were fast idle test-0.12 (max limit 0.2) CO / 47ppm(max 200) HC / 1.002 (max 1.030) LAMBDA natural idle test-0.11 (max 0.30) CO Maybe putting in injection cleaner or cataclean would help to clean the system out when I go on a long motorway run. I've read before about coolant temperature sensor s causing problems-can you test if they are faulty or is it best to just fit a new one if they are not too expensive? Can I assume that my lambda sensors are not at fault and causing problems as it passed the mot ok on this? I'll start by going on a long run over the next few weeks and see if that helps at all.
  14. I used to average 18-20 mpg, mainly on shortish runs but over a period of time it has dropped to 13, this is mainly on short runs of 2 miles, but also on longer 10 mile runs (but still around town rather than motorway type driving).I have owned the car for 8 years, it has done 93000 miles and to me doesn't drive any different from when I first had it. It starts perfect and settles down to a normal idle fairly quickly and is as smooth and responsive as ever. It is a 1993. I took it for its MOT yesterday and it passed (again) with the only advisory being rust on front/rear springs. The mpg is obviously getting worse over a period of time. Any ideas why it is getting worse and what I should be looking at to try and get it to improve?? I know I am getting much poorer mpg than other people are getting on here. Andy
  15. It wasn't Inchape Retail-it was just someone working from home doing it as a sideline, and my dash is still working perfectly after three years. This guy was an enthusiast and very very friendly. Not a cowboy at all.