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Asking For A Second Opinion In Auto Repair In Denver

Hi there. I’m Saul Reisman here at Saul’s Autotek and today I’m standing underneath the back of this 1998 Nissan Maxima.

You might be wondering to yourself, “These guys fixed cars for a living, what are they doing with this 20-year-old Nissan Maxima?” Well, we’ve got a couple of concerns with this car. When this vehicle came in, the complaint from the owner was the brakes were getting hot, they were smoking, they were grinding. Something was seriously wrong. Well, we were able to look through the vehicle’s previous history, thanks to Carfax and see that less than two years ago, the owner had opted to replace the rear brake calipers, the rear brake pads, the front brake pads, and then machine the brake rotors on all four corners. Now here, at Autotek, we don’t machine those rotors and we’ll tell you a little bit more about that in a minute, but the reality is somebody paid a lot of money to get their brakes fixed. It’s been under a year, and now they’re in another facility with the same complaint.

We do our due diligence to make sure that you’re never getting the same repair twice. You’ll never get told, “Well, it needs this and it really needs this.” So, the real reason behind this video is the second opinion. Just as if you went to a doctor and they said, “Hey, you’re sick. You need this surgery, it costs 200 grand. When you want to do it?” The first thing you would say is, “Whoa, hold on I want a second opinion. I want to make sure you know, is this accurate?” We encourage you to get a second opinion with your motor vehicle each and every time. That’s part of the reason why if you bring us a quote from a dealership, we’ll beat it by 10% no questions asked because we respect you for taking the time to get a second opinion.

Now, the reason why that second opinion matters is that when this vehicle came in, we could have looked at those burned up brakes and sold it brakes and told the owner, “You need brakes.

Here’s what it is.” Sold him the same repair he did a year ago and put it on the road. The reality is the owner probably would have opted to do that repair. However, he’d probably be back in another year. So we wanted to look a little further and see why this happened. Now when we investigated it, we saw that they had machined the brake rotors, which means they took the brake rotor and they cut it thinner. That meant that the brake caliper has to extend further to actually put a clamping force on the brake pad and that brake rotor. As a result, the rear brake calipers, which had already been replaced, are now overextending to compensate for that distance.

As a result of that action, the brake calipers themselves are actually pushing so far inward that it damaged the new caliper. Now we’ve just rebuilt these. That’s the way they’re nice and clean and shiny because the old one was so extended, it was actually leaking fluid on to the brake. Now the way the hydraulics in that fluid system in your brake system works is extremely important. It uses very small diameter lines so it can use very high pressure. So when you push with your foot on that pedal, you’re putting 150/250 pounds of force, but you’re pushing on a very small diameter so that when it gets to this end, it can have a tremendous amount of stopping force. That’s Pascal’s principle at work. The downside is because this caliper overextended, that piston leaked out its fluid and that fluid came out, the brake system loses all pressure.

The vehicle is no longer safe, can no longer generate enough pressure to stop and can introduce air pockets into the brake system that make it literally impossible to stop. Because rather than pushing fluid through a straw, as you would normally, there’s an air pocket in that straw. And just like we use a straw to get a sip of your drink, and it makes that bubbly noise because you’re getting the air pockets at the bottom and you don’t get any liquid. Well, you need that liquid to keep you hydrated? Well, your car needs that liquid to make the brakes work. If it doesn’t have that, the brakes will not work, period. There will be zero pressure in the pedal. So because this owner came to us for that second opinion because they’d already had that brake repair done, we dove in and found that them machining the rotors is actually what led to this failure. So the other facility that thought they were doing a great job by selling that service, actually set them up for failure and set this car up to come back.

As a result, it’s now back getting a repair to replace those rotors and replace the calipers that had already been replaced. If you want to prevent these kinds of failures with your car, come and see us at Autotek, we’d be happy to take care of it. We don’t charge for the inspection or diagnostic fee, and we will always look into the service history of your vehicle to make sure that our diagnostic is as accurate as it can possibly be. We could’ve very easily looked at this vehicle and just sold the same repair the owner did a year ago and they’d probably been happy. But now we know that the other facility did something wrong. We’re going to take care of that concern. We’re going to make sure the customer knows it so they know that they’re never going to deal with this again. We’re going to slap a three-year warranty on it because they did this a year ago and it’s already back.

So we want them to have the peace of mind of knowing it’s going to work perfectly. That we took the extra step and the extra effort to find every piece in part and every detail so that this can be your one-stop auto repair shop. We don’t want you coming back five times. You don’t want to come back five times. And you don’t want to replace brakes twice in a year. Come and see us here at Saul’s Autotek. We are your one-stop auto repair facility, Greenwood Village, Colorado, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Stop on in anytime.

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About the Author

Picture of Saul Reisman

Saul Reisman

Saul Reisman has been helping the residents of the Centennial State with their automotive needs for over ten years now. He finished his Associate Degree in Physics at the Community College of Denver. Saul is an active member of the Specialty Equipment Market Association and a board member of the Young Executives Network. He undergoes constant educational training through GMC, MOPAR, Ford, Snap-On, Borg-Warner, and Ozark Automotive, with an emphasis on diagnosis, repair, and improvement.

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