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Looking at a '97 but she has some needs...

Joined
19 January 2018
Messages
966
Location
Colorado Springs, CO
I'm looking at purchasing a '97 but the seller has disclosed she could use some pretty standard maintenance. He has the car fairly priced but knowing she will need work before I can drive her the 1k miles home I need to make sure I make a fair offer but don't go over budget. Could someone provide some insight on rough costs for the following items?



  1. [FONT=&quot]The usual suspect: Water Pump/Timing Belt/Tensioner – the alternator belt and compressor belt might need to be replaced as well (they are 11 years old) - ~$2000 ?[/FONT]
  2. [FONT=&quot]Spark plugs/spark plug seals need to be replaced – 10 years old[/FONT]
  3. [FONT=&quot]Coolant hoses have always been inspected and are in supposedly good condition but never replaced – let’s just say after 20 years they will need to be replaced soon?[/FONT]
  4. [FONT=&quot]Rear Left Axle CV boot is leaking – owner was informed by Acura dealership it should be replaced but it wasn’t critical[/FONT]
  5. [FONT=&quot]Passenger Seat can’t be constantly connected to power because it caused an electrical drain, owner doesn’t know if it’s the wiring in the seat or the wiring in the car that causes the drain so he has the two connectors under the seat disconnected.[/FONT]
  6. [FONT=&quot]Cam plugs, seals and valve cover gaskets were replaced in 2009 – I’m not sure what the maintenance window is on these[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]
and don't worry, I plan on having a full PPI done as well.

TIA
[/FONT]

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Rear Left Axle CV boot is leaking – owner was informed by Acura dealership it should be replaced but it wasn’t critical

Be careful about this one - the grease turns to liquid and the problem can rapidly go from "leaks a little" to "No more grease". I ran into this issue on my 3400 mile drive home. Given that axles are minimum $600/pair or (I was quoted) $1200 for a boot replacement at the dealership, it's not a cheap fix, either. You can buy the boot kit and do it yourself for $100 which is what I ended up doing. Some info I wish I'd known :)
 
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#1 - TB - Sooner than later - if it breaks you will cry
#2 - Plugs - $60 and and an hour or so of your time - get dielectric grease
#3 - Coolant hoses - I replaced all hoses on my 94 with 75K miles and none were in bad shape, just did as a precaution.
#4 - Rear Left Axle CV - well, you can't buy the (stock) axles, sorry, (this was incorrect Old Guy straightened me out - I was just looking for bearings) with my 94 I had 3 spun bearings - I bought 2 donor 94 Legend axles to get 3 good bearings. Changing the boots doesn't fix that.
#5 - Passenger Seat - If you're not electrically inclined a friend may be able to help - maybe a bare wire or something easy. Seats are easy to pull, use a blanket to not damage interior.
#6 - Cam plugs - Good for you - I may have slightly leaking plugs

Get your PPI and see what that comes up with - hopefully nothing more.
See if the PPI has compression check and/or leak-down. many more experienced than me can decipher if there are motor issues.
Let us know.

Good fortune in your search, we will try to help.

Al
 
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I recently replaced the waterpump, timing belt and associated seals on my 97 with 23K miles. They were original and they looked perfect when they were replaced. Even knowing that, I would never risk a motor. Have it checked out and and sorted before you drive it home. It will be more fun not worrying.
 
  1. Coolant hoses have always been inspected and are in supposedly good condition but never replaced – let’s just say after 20 years they will need to be replaced soon?
  2. Rear Left Axle CV boot is leaking – owner was informed by Acura dealership it should be replaced but it wasn’t critical
  3. Passenger Seat can’t be constantly connected to power because it caused an electrical drain, owner doesn’t know if it’s the wiring in the seat or the wiring in the car that causes the drain so he has the two connectors under the seat disconnected
How many miles on the car? If the car has not been tracked or driven in really hot climate and the mileage is low, the hoses may be low on the change out list. The hose that seems to be the most problematic from heat damage is the large top hose in the engine compartment. Give them a squeeze and check for soft spots. The oil cooler hoses might be deteriorating if they have had a lot of exposure to oil. A complete set of hoses is probably around $450 US$. I expect labor at an Acura dealer might be $300 - $400 and throw in the cost of replacement coolant. You should probably replace the thermostat if you are in there.


If the tripod joint is OK and its just the boot that needs replacement, boot kits are available from Honda for a reasonable price; but, the labor is going to hurt if you have it done by a shop. Worst case parts wise - plan to spend $300 for a replacement shafts from Insane Shafts.

If unplugging the seat resolves the problem, the problem is in the seat not the body harness - that is a big plus. Chances are that the problem is in the switch. It could be as simple as a frayed wire; but, more likely may require replacement of the switch which probably isn't that hard; but, if memory serves (its been 6 years since I had to pull the seats) I suspect that the seat has to come out which is not hard to do. Shop labor to R&R the seat and replace the switch is probably going to be 1-2 hrs. No idea what the switch costs.
 
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How many miles on the car? If the car has not been tracked or driven in really hot climate and the mileage is low, the hoses may be low on the change out list. The hose that seems to be the most problematic from heat damage is the large top hose in the engine compartment. Give them a squeeze and check for soft spots. The oil cooler hoses might be deteriorating if they have had a lot of exposure to oil.

Thanks for the heads up on the oil cooler hoses I'll have to add that to the list of things to look for. The car has a little over 120k miles and has spent it's whole life in AZ, NV, and CA so very warm/hot climates but it has never been tracked.
 
Thanks for the heads up on the oil cooler hoses I'll have to add that to the list of things to look for. The car has a little over 120k miles and has spent it's whole life in AZ, NV, and CA so very warm/hot climates but it has never been tracked.

Just to be clear, I was talking about the small coolant hoses that circulate coolant through the oil cooler. If the car is an 'oil leaker' they can be subjected to deterioration. If the oil filter area is reasonably clean, then probably no greater deterioration than any other hose. In case you are not familiar with them, here is a link showing the 'pile o hoses' is you elect to do a full meal deal hose replacement.

https://www.scienceofspeed.com/inde...omplete-coolant-hose-kit-left-hand-drive.html

If you buy the car and if you decide to do the hose replacement yourself, be careful about the removal of the large hoses connected to the aluminum pipes under the car. The hoses tend to stick in place. If you use a sharp hard pointy object to pry the hose off (or slit the hose) you risk nicking the aluminum pipes and if the nick is in the wrong place, that connection may drool coolant forever. Just a word of caution. Also, one of those cable operated remote hose clamp pliers can reduce the frustration level associate with the R&R of the OEM spring clamps.

Arizona and Nevada - I might be inclined to put the hose replacement higher up the priority list. I suggest inspecting the seats carefully and the dash and exposed rubber trim bits on the car. If the car received significant sun exposure (parked outside?) that stuff can deteriorate and replacements are not cheap. It may not affect driveability; but, will affect value.
 
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