Cottman

You're going to love this. My 93 Aerostar was having some transmission problems (big surprise there, right?). So, I take the van to Cottman transmission to have them do diagnostics and get an estimate. While I'm
sitting there, the manager was making calls to find parts for trannies and getting advice on repairing them. A little later the mechanic (yes, just one) comes out and asks how to put transmission oil in a Jetta. Hmmm, this sounds a little scary.
Finally I get a price and "diagnosis". The mechanic thinks the problem is piston slap, but they'll check out the transmission anyway. They claim that the only way to diagnose it is to take it completely apart. I really like that bit. My Ford manual has a huge section on transmission diagnostics and it includes hydraulic and electrical tests. The price they quoted for "diagnosis" exceeded the price of a new transmission. I thought they were supposed to be the "McDonalds" of transmission places.
After thanking them for their stupidity (I was nice actually), me and my Aero visited the local Ford dealer. For $65 they took an hour and did the actual diagnostic tests. A valve was stuck. Because of the transmission model, the part was rare. Ford doesn't make them anymore. They located the part, but a new transmission was just as much. Of course I went with the new transmission that was professionally installed by mechanics who don't ask how to put oil in it. Did the dealership send it off to Cottmann as Cottman claims all the dealers do? Nope, I sat there while they did it and visited the shop to answer questions about other bits.
I need a new engine now. You know where I'm taking it. BTW, who was the idiot that decided engines should drop out the bottom instead of coming out the top? Replacing an engine isn't that tough to do. I don't have a lift and custom cradle, but I do lack enough brains to know it would be a fun job using a come-along tied to the roof of the house. OK, so there's a little damage to the roof. That just makes for another fun job.
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Try it, you might like it! On SOME vehicles it is actually much easier than pulling out the top.
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On Wed, 26 Nov 2003 17:15:50 GMT, "JustAnotherGuy"

Is Cottman a chain? There's one here in Flint, Mi & I thought they were an Indy.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Professional Shop Rat: 14,175 days in a GM plant. - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
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314 952-4601
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You can pull the engine out the front, no need to drop it out the bottom.

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either way, attached to the crossmember or thru the bottom after you've broken it down to a short block and leave the crossmember in. I've done them both using an engine hoist and a pallet jack. I just happened to have them sitting around.
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with the transmission slamming back and forth into and out of overdrive. They test drove it and said it was the lock up converter. I told them it was under warranty so he said we will rebuild the whole tranny. After it was all done, I still had the same problem. When I took it back, the same guy that test drove it before, now says it is an ignition problem. Turns out when I changed spark plug wires, I didn't put di-electric grease in the boots, causing an ignition problem. Before I fixed the ignition problem, I took it back again to have them check it again. There was a different manager there, so I made like I was there for the first time. They checked it out and while the manager was talking to me in the office, the mechanic(?) dropped the pan. they then showed me all the metal filings and burnt fluid in the pan.They said the tranny needed to be rebuilt because the tranny was wasted. I guess I must have really drove it hard in the 2 weeks since the last rebuild. If you are thinking about going to Cottman, forget it . They are nothing but a bunch of thieves. This shop was in New Port Richey, Florida. Sorry about the rant. Dave
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