Rover Thoughts: First Planned (and Unplanned) Repairs

Well prior to the Range Rover Sport’s check-engine light coming on due to me battling with not being permitted to use cruise control, I had already confirmed that there were things wrong with it (prior to buying it) that I was prepared to fix relative to the price I was paying. I had had it tech inspected, and some things were unnecessary annoyances, and others were critical to operation. I wrote “others,” but technically, there was only one repair necessary that was critical to operation: the rear door latches.

range rover sport l320 repairsIt looked pretty good after the detail, but it rained two days later…then it got dirty. That never happens in LA

For some strange reason, the locking mechanisms had failed on both rear doors! Odd right? I guess the previous owner had a spouse or children who manhandled those doors in a certain way that, while they still opened and shut perfectly normally, they wouldn’t lock.

So of course anyone could walk up to the locked vehicle, open a rear door, and walk off with my power inverter or dehumidifier (as the only things of value inside).

The shop I found in Orange County California to be my point of service was/is Euro West Rovers. They really seemed to know their stuff and as the only independent Land Rover tech in the area, the major Land Rover dealers sent a ton of non-warranty work their way. There was no shortage of Land Rovers lined up for work, scheduled maintenance, and also repairs. I draw a distinction between the three that I’ll go into in a later post.

The shop is run by a guy named Mark who’s a bit terse, but nice and knows his stuff. He’s seen pretty much everything…until the error codes my cruise control was causing. But he’s fixed so many of these things that he can quote a price on pretty much any repair or service without blinking an eye…except for cruise control issues.

So I dropped off Bertram and came back a few days later.

The cost for the door latch repairs came to: $840 parts and labor. Pricey, but necessary, and not complaining. I knew what I was getting into.

The cruise control glitch seemed to solve itself after they reset the check-engine light and they were unable to replicate the problem (as is often the case with any sort of issue with a complex piece of machinery…as soon as you take it to a technician, it starts working again).

Additionally, this was when I paid for my tech inspection. That cost was for two hours of labor at $60/hour so that came to $120.

With these repairs done, I was able to park it confidently on the street. In a couple weeks, I can take it back for a recheck at the smog station. They say you need to put a fair number of miles on to reset the ECU and oxygen sensor, otherwise you might go back and fail right away.

First restoration bill (as opposed to repair): $960

I’ll be building a page and spreadsheet chronicling maintenance and repairs on the vehicle. You can look forward to that soon.

TO BE CONTINUED…