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Old 01-06-2016, 05:31 PM   #1
randy_s
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Happy 2002 L200 worth keeping?

We have a 2002 L200, 70k miles, in generally great shape, no rust, but with a BCM issue. Our mechanics are saying all parts for Saturns are outrageously expensive to get and the car is not worth keeping.

What do you think?

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Old 01-07-2016, 11:14 AM   #2
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by randy_s View Post
We have a 2002 L200, 70k miles, in generally great shape, no rust, but with a BCM issue. Our mechanics are saying all parts for Saturns are outrageously expensive to get and the car is not worth keeping.

What do you think?
Take a look at my mileage below. The car still runs well. I've never had a problem with the powertrain at all. What repairs have been done on my car have been wear and tear items. Are replacement BCMs expensive? Yes, and to be programmed correctly requires a scanner - GM's TECH II scan tool - to transfer mileage information from one to another including the RKE (remote keyless entry, if you have one). Take a look at the link below for a cost idea regarding the BCM.

http://www.gmpartscenter.net/auto-pa.../controls-scat

If you add labor time to the retail price then a BCM replacement is easily over $500.00 using the costs shown above. Now, as for the mechanic's remark about parts for your Saturn being outrageously expensive I believe this should be considered in a larger context. For a part like the BCM, any manufacturer's price will be high. No automotive computer, including the BCM, is inexpensive. Other expensive items would include fuel pumps, emission related components, various suspension components, and other electrical components. But while such items may be expensive to replace, it is generally true about all other brands of cars as well. So saying that Saturn replacement parts are expensive does not, in and of itself, mean much to me.

With the age of your vehicle your insurance costs are low and I'm willing to bet that you've done very little service work on the car. I'm guessing that to date your car has been, in general, fairly inexpensive to own. If it were me, I'd hang on to it as the car has a lot more service left to give.

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Old 01-07-2016, 02:00 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

Just to add to Pierrots posting. I checked our friends at Rock Auto. They show a refurbished AD Delco BCM at $238.00 + shipping less a $20.00 core charge. The price on Pierrot's link is coming in at $260.00 and that may be a brand new one. So either way, I would NOT call that price outrageous for what it is.

Personally I would talk to the GM Dealer and find out 1) what their price is for a BCM and 2) what their charge is to program a BCM. That way you will know what your outlay will likely be.

If you take any car to the garage for repairs, there is no such thing as a small bill these days. They have wages to pay and labor rates will run anywhere from $75.00 through to $120.00 per hour. Dealer parts will always be more expensive than an online or replacement parts supplier.

If the car is in good body & mechanical condition and you want to keep it running, then $500 +/- is not 'expensive'.

In sales parlance when people use the term 'expensive', the response is 'compared to what'. I don't think Saturn parts are nay more expensive than other brands.

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Old 01-07-2016, 05:09 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by randy_s View Post
We have a 2002 L200, 70k miles, in generally great shape, no rust, but with a BCM issue. Our mechanics are saying all parts for Saturns are outrageously expensive to get and the car is not worth keeping.

What do you think?
Just BCM issue that isn't a reason to sell it off. Just have your local GM dealer order a NEW BCM and copy the mileage and transfer it to the new BCM and keep driving. Your Mechanics most likely wants your Saturn cause once the mechanic fixes it they will keep it. Parts aren't that expensive not sure where the mechanics is blowing hot air from but you need a better mechanic then the one your talking to right now. And this comes from a Person that has worked in a Reputable Independent Auto Repair shop and we have repeat Customers because we do the job right the first time and not waste their time and money doing so-I no longer worked there because I moved to do Organic Family Farming but I still have the knowledge and experiences-multiple tools from it. All vehicles will have major repairs in their lifespan to just say it just Saturn is total MYTH. I have my Saturn and love them and the amount of maintenance I do to both of them will keep them going for long time. But then again this is me.

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Old 01-07-2016, 05:18 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by floridasl22002 View Post
Just to add to Pierrots posting. I checked our friends at Rock Auto. They show a refurbished AD Delco BCM at $238.00 + shipping less a $20.00 core charge. The price on Pierrot's link is coming in at $260.00 and that may be a brand new one. So either way, I would NOT call that price outrageous for what it is.

Personally I would talk to the GM Dealer and find out 1) what their price is for a BCM and 2) what their charge is to program a BCM. That way you will know what your outlay will likely be.

If you take any car to the garage for repairs, there is no such thing as a small bill these days. They have wages to pay and labor rates will run anywhere from $75.00 through to $120.00 per hour. Dealer parts will always be more expensive than an online or replacement parts supplier.

If the car is in good body & mechanical condition and you want to keep it running, then $500 +/- is not 'expensive'.

In sales parlance when people use the term 'expensive', the response is 'compared to what'. I don't think Saturn parts are nay more expensive than other brands.
All reasonable points there...I think they are trying to get the Owner to sell to them so they can fix it and sell it for a profit. When I hear the word "expensive" just like you said "compared to" that what the Owner should ask the Mechanic every-time don't just take their word for it. The Owner should know nothing is cheap or free you pay to have good Service Repairs not bad advice.

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Old 01-07-2016, 06:36 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

I agree with the thoughts and advice in the preceding posts. However, I think it is not accurate to say that "all vehicles will need major repairs during their lifespans" because of the fact that whether a repair is "major" or not is subjective. I would say that major is say an engine or transmission change resulting from a failure. I don't think that changing a BCM is a major repair. This is a common failure in all makes of cars, due to the challenging environment for automotive electronics. One thing that would help in this discussion would be to identify the location in which the car has spent its life. South - sun exposure issues, North - salt exposure issues. Another factor is how comfortable you are with driving a 14 year old but lightly used vehicle.

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Old 01-08-2016, 10:52 AM   #7
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

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I agree with the thoughts and advice in the preceding posts. However, I think it is not accurate to say that "all vehicles will need major repairs during their lifespans" because of the fact that whether a repair is "major" or not is subjective.
That may be but when fixing Engine or Tranx problems that is what I included in major repairs so it's not subjective but I have had to do those repairs and left the Tranx to a shop to do for me.

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Old 01-09-2016, 11:08 AM   #8
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

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This is a common failure in all makes of cars, due to the challenging environment for automotive electronics.
this may be a common issue in saturns, but hardly common in other makes...i have never had a computer of any kind fail in a car/suv/truck that i have owned...the one in my wife's car is still going strong with 282k...it did lose the keyless remote function about 200k miles ago lol...i installed an aftermarket remote starter and keyless entry so i bypassed the bcm function for that anyway...saturn wanted like 400 bucks to replace it...

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Old 01-09-2016, 01:17 PM   #9
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

I think that the point which born again is making is that such failures happen in all makes of cars, not that it will happen your car or mine. As it is, no car I've owned has had a computer failure either (Saturn, Nissan, Toyota).

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Gov't's grown bigger, but a chance exists that it will be reduced. I'm cautiously hopeful.

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Old 01-09-2016, 04:59 PM   #10
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

There is a listing on BBA-Reman's site of common failure parts. While not all makes have body control modules listed, there seems to be ABS and Instrument Clusters for almost all makes.
http://www.bba-reman.com/content.asp...hints_and_tips

BTW - by my count I have had 4 engine failures over the years, zero gearbox failures. Minor should mean engine accessories like alternators, water pumps, AC compressors, starters, stuff like wheel bearings, shocks, etc. Unfortunately, many of these things are now so buried under "stuff" on current cars that changing them out is a major job. The L-Series is a star in this regard.

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Old 01-09-2016, 06:34 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

Quote:
Originally Posted by born again View Post
There is a listing on BBA-Reman's site of common failure parts. While not all makes have body control modules listed, there seems to be ABS and Instrument Clusters for almost all makes.
http://www.bba-reman.com/content.asp...hints_and_tips

BTW - by my count I have had 4 engine failures over the years, zero gearbox failures. Minor should mean engine accessories like alternators, water pumps, AC compressors, starters, stuff like wheel bearings, shocks, etc. Unfortunately, many of these things are now so buried under "stuff" on current cars that changing them out is a major job. The L-Series is a star in this regard.
i have a 3.5 rav4 and i have heard the radiator needs to come out in order to change the alternator lol...rear that shops charge 700 for the job...it's under warranty for a while so im not worried about it...i had a rod go in a mustang once...trans in the same car 2 years later...had the trans go in a grand cherokee a few years ago...replaced a motor in a dodge intrepid back in 05 i think...that is about it for major stuff...

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Old 01-09-2016, 08:37 PM   #12
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

If that car is in great shape as you say and with only 70k on the clock, KEEP THAT CAR...replace the BCM yourself and ditch that mechanic. He doesn't seem to know much.

A month ago almost to the day I replaced the BCM on mine (daughters actually).
If you can change a spark plug, you can EASILY swap out the BCM. It simply clips on the top of the glove box. Six or eight phillips head screws hold the glove box to the dash, remove them and pull out the glove box. Unplug the wires and pop it off, pop on the new one...plug it in and your done...oh, screw the glovebox back to the dash.
Do the 3x10 minute marrying and your up and running.

I bought the BCM (reman'd) from Rock Auto, their description and part number.....ACDELCO 19116648 GM Original Equipment..... it's a reman'd unit.
It's $213 pus $25 core and (I went with 2 day) shipping $15.

A Very very reputable shop by me that does everything from hot rods to major repairs on new cars, has a GM tech 2 scanner, it was $141 to reprogram it.
DONE! Under $400.
Is it worth it? Hell yeah, we have just about 138k now, it's very clean and straight, rides great, quiet and smooth, engine runs like a top, for that matter, everything (except the speakers) work like new.
Even with other minor things, blower motor a couple weeks ago and this afternoon the starter, it's more then worth it. Those are minor things and normal wear items. Just think what it would cost to buy a newer used car, say 2-4 years old.....WAY more then simple repairs.

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Old 01-17-2016, 11:12 AM   #13
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Default Re: 2002 L200 worth keeping?

What would an equivalent relatively low mileage vehicle cost you ? Far more than $500 for a new BCM replacement. Keep the car.

Higher insurance, licensing fees, taxes, interest if financing [and full insurance coverage as well], possible deferred maintenance if buying used and if buying new, ridiculous transaction prices. But oh that "new car smell".

That's just the off-gassing of the depreciation hit one takes the minute the car is driven off the lot.

It's actually the smell of money being burned.

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