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Discussion Starter #21
More than likely the tech found a leak, and bent the cooling fins to make it look like there was external road damage. There is a lot of money to be made on a non-warranty repair for both parts and service.
I can see this being more the case with this dealership. You think more like I do on this one.
 

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It goes like this as one person said in a earlier reply to my postings. I took this car to another dealer or second opinion if you will. The dealer service tech explained to me the findings, and even took me to see the car while on the rack. That is when I took the attached photos which are now posted above. This dealer is standing behind the first dealers findings of road damage uncovered by warranty and suggested I file a insurance claim as well.
Here is my take on that SCAM, my daughter is paying over $500 a month on this car, having bought a ext. warranty was well. Moreover like many paying for insurance to drive the car without AC in the heat till someone at at Toyota gets a conscience and says fix the car. Here in KY. its going to be about 90+ the next couple days, so I more than likely will just pay to have it fixed for my daughter and grandkids to go to school in and be done with them as they are with us. My wife and I are already looking for another vehicle to replace our 17 Rav4 limited. These people are crooks in opinion, they can sell you a warranty, but not stand behind it! Although this car is under factory warranty.
As you know, I sympathize with your situation. However, your comments about the extended warranty (which you paid extra for) are off-base.

The Toyota Extended Warranty (which is actually called the Toyota VSA, or Toyota Vehicle Service Agreement) is technically not a warranty and it does not come into play until after the new car warranty expires. Since the new car warranty on the vehicle in question has not expired, the VSA is irrelevant to this discussion.

The reason the VSA is technically not a warranty is that by US law, a warranty (if provided) must be included at no extra charge. The terms of a warranty can vary by manufacturer or product, but by definition you cannot "purchase" a warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
As you know, I sympathize with your situation. However, your comments about the extended warranty (which you paid extra for) are off-base.

The Toyota Extended Warranty (which is actually called the Toyota VSA, or Toyota Vehicle Service Agreement) is technically not a warranty and it does not come into play until after the new car warranty expires. Since the new car warranty on the vehicle in question has not expired, the VSA is irrelevant to this discussion.

The reason the VSA is technically not a warranty is that by US law, a warranty (if provided) must be included at no extra charge. The terms of a warranty can vary by manufacturer or product, but by definition you cannot "purchase" a warranty.
Well I appreciate that.

But let me explain it the way it was explained to me by TFS. I called to ask for a refund on my extended warranty from TFS, they said it was prorated, that actually it was in place the day one I purchased it along with the factory warranty. That in fact, it was the SAME as the factory warranty just a extension of it for a longer period than the 3 that came with the car.

I in many ways see it as you, the extended warranty should not be relevant until the factory is expired. I only include that as to say, in some ways for what ever reason with both warranties on this car something should have been done in order to fix this issue. I personally could care less how they would fix it, just not on our dime!
 

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So they want to prorate your extended "warranty" from day 1 but it does NOT come into play until the 3 year standard no cost warranty expires??? Thieving Bastards!
Seems to me the fair thing to do here is to fully refund your money during the 1st 3 years and then prorate if you want out of it after that. Talk about leaving a BAD taste in one's mouth!
 

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Well I appreciate that.

But let me explain it the way it was explained to me by TFS. I called to ask for a refund on my extended warranty from TFS, they said it was prorated, that actually it was in place the day one I purchased it along with the factory warranty. That in fact, it was the SAME as the factory warranty just a extension of it for a longer period than the 3 that came with the car.

I in many ways see it as you, the extended warranty should not be relevant until the factory is expired. I only include that as to say, in some ways for what ever reason with both warranties on this car something should have been done in order to fix this issue. I personally could care less how they would fix it, just not on our dime!
One reason it is pro-rated is that there is a different price depending on when you purchase the VSA. It costs more if you buy it several years after the date of first use of the car. Another reason is that the amount you paid reflects a substantial dealer profit and is not the actual amount that Toyota received, and they cannot claw-back that profit from the dealer. The other reason they can pro-rate is that they can legally do it.

But regardless, from a practical standpoint, the VSA does not come into play until the original warranty expires.

The only question is whether the pinhole leak was caused by an external road hazard. BTW, how did the second dealer know where the leak was? Did he fill the compressor with refrigerant and then confirm it is coming from the area with bent cooling fins? You should discuss this with an independent mechanic who specialized in Toyota and also discuss with Toyota Motor (the issue of how they know where the leak is actually occurring).
 

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I wonder if the comprehensive part of your daughter's auto insurance would cover this if was the result of an object striking her car rather than her car striking another object; same situation as when a rock hits a windshield. That might help with the cost a bit. Another issue is, I am not certain why the cost is so high. I found a Toyota condenser for that car for $288.68 (Part No. 884A0-33020) I'm not certain that is the right part, but it's for a 2018 Toyota Camry and its genuine Toyota. Is labor and refrigerant nearly 700 dollars? That sounds excessive. I also Googled "Camry condenser" and came across at least one individual complaining that it was soft or placed in such a manner that makes it susceptible to damage. Look into it...that might be another angle to pursue. I am fiercely protective of my daughter and would be livid, like you, if it happened to her car. Try calling Toyota one last time and ask for a supervisor. Explain that you are a long term Toyota owner of several vehicles and this will certainly have an effect on future decisions. Address you have read other complaints related to placement of the condensor and possible its construct. Last, and don't be afraid to ask them...ask if they or the dealer could offer a courtesy replacement or at least a reduction in price. Offer to buy the part (on-line at a discount) and take it to a dealer for courtesy installation. I hope this works out in your, and daughter's, favor.
 

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I wonder if the comprehensive part of your daughter's auto insurance would cover this if was the result of an object striking her car rather than her car striking another object; same situation as when a rock hits a windshield. That might help with the cost a bit. Another issue is, I am not certain why the cost is so high. I found a Toyota condenser for that car for $288.68 (Part No. 884A0-33020) I'm not certain that is the right part, but it's for a 2018 Toyota Camry and its genuine Toyota. Is labor nearly 700 dollars? That sounds excessive.
Dealers charge MSRP for parts used during non-warranty service, and you can get them for a less online. That might work if one can get an independent mechanic to do the labor if you supply the part. There is also the cost of the refrigerant gas and other misc parts (and shop fees, etc) that also is marked up by the dealer.

The high profit margin on parts is one reason why I have my doubts as to whether they actually know if the compressor is leaking from the spot they say has the minor damage on the cooling fins, or whether they are just "assuming" that is the case. I don't know about this particular dealer, but some pay their techs a commission on parts sold as part of a non-warranty repair.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
One reason it is pro-rated is that there is a different price depending on when you purchase the VSA. It costs more if you buy it several years after the date of first use of the car. Another reason is that the amount you paid reflects a substantial dealer profit and is not the actual amount that Toyota received, and they cannot claw-back that profit from the dealer. The other reason they can pro-rate is that they can legally do it.

But regardless, from a practical standpoint, the VSA does not come into play until the original warranty expires.

The only question is whether the pinhole leak was caused by an external road hazard. BTW, how did the second dealer know where the leak was? Did he fill the compressor with refrigerant and then confirm it is coming from the area with bent cooling fins? You should discuss this with an independent mechanic who specialized in Toyota and also discuss with Toyota Motor (the issue of how they know where the leak is actually occurring).
According to both dealers, yes they did charge the system to determine the leak point. With what did they charge the system I have no idea. I can safely assume they did NOT use the required freon which is 1234YF, the new freon that everyone is transitioning to sooner or later. Which by the way 1234YF is at a dealer $8 a ounce, yes I said ounce. A 12 ounce can of 134A is typically $6-$8, while the newer is that much a ounce. I will be getting another opinion in this matter.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I wonder if the comprehensive part of your daughter's auto insurance would cover this if was the result of an object striking her car rather than her car striking another object; same situation as when a rock hits a windshield. That might help with the cost a bit. Another issue is, I am not certain why the cost is so high. I found a Toyota condenser for that car for $288.68 (Part No. 884A0-33020) I'm not certain that is the right part, but it's for a 2018 Toyota Camry and its genuine Toyota. Is labor and refrigerant nearly 700 dollars? That sounds excessive. I also Googled "Camry condenser" and came across at least one individual complaining that it was soft or placed in such a manner that makes it susceptible to damage. Look into it...that might be another angle to pursue. I am fiercely protective of my daughter and would be livid, like you, if it happened to her car. Try calling Toyota one last time and ask for a supervisor. Explain that you are a long term Toyota owner of several vehicles and this will certainly have an effect on future decisions. Address you have read other complaints related to placement of the condensor and possible its construct. Last, and don't be afraid to ask them...ask if they or the dealer could offer a courtesy replacement or at least a reduction in price. Offer to buy the part (on-line at a discount) and take it to a dealer for courtesy installation. I hope this works out in your, and daughter's, favor.
I appreciate it!

In regards to the dealer offering a discount, it was never mentioned in any way, if maybe buy the condenser and freon, and they donate the labor, you know for being a Toyota family of customers. The reason the cost is so outrageous is the condenser, $413.94, and the 1234YF freon in this year model Camry. As I previously posted the freon is between $6-$8 a ounce, and some cars can use as much as 36-48 ounces, you do the math.

Still its a shame my daughter like many others working and doing all the "right" things in life seems to hit a rough patch more than her share sometimes. We ourselves who own a 17 Rav4 encouraged her to buy a Toyota from this dealer. Not only that, why does a person buy a NEW care? The warranty and piece of mind that comes with it. In years past I have owned many rebuilt cars, NOT one time have they ever failed me other than routine maintenance like any car or truck. If I new she was going to have to pay for this kind of repair while under warranty, I would have said buy a rebuilt for half the money, and then make the needed repairs if it so happens.
 

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There is only 1 way to identify the leak that is to charge the system and inject a dye visible in black light that will identify where and if there is a leak. Showing you some bent fins does not indicate a leak but guess we are way past that now. Theres a suggestion on posts to try filing claim under your insurance but not sure how that would work or if it would.

Dealers used to be a lot more open to warranty claims until the manufacturers started denying their claims for payment as the claims could not be substantiated as failed part. This is why they are insistent, right or wrong, that it was road hazard not a defect that caused this issue.

OP it sounds like your well informed so I assume you know, generally, a warranty is only meant to protect you against a material defect/failure by a covered OEM installed part. It does not cover damage as shown in your pic IF that truly is the source of the "leak" or damage. This is why its so important to have them show you not the damage but the actual leak.

Best of luck getting this resolved
 

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I figured how to post the pics. Here are pics of the condenser, if you notice the toward right hand corner the small indentions (dime size) in the fins, they say that is the impact point of a rock that caused a small pin hole. As to taking it to another dealer, I myself did that and took these pics while on the rack. That dealer already was aware it had been to the previous dealer where the car was purchased.
In the extended warranty brochure it states the condenser is covered, and no were can I find exclusions for that.
Highlighted second photo shows damage perfectly

Definitely NOT warranty. I think comprehensive is your best route and in many cases there is no deductible.

It may not be the answer you are looking for, but think of it like this.

tree falls on your car
piece of debris thrown up by another car hits your car anywhere
hailstorm
flood
tornado

All are not warranty responsibilities of the selling manufacturer. Call your insurance company and have them look at your car, see what they say. I'll bet it is what I posted here. You should have comprehensive on any financed car and it's a VERY good idea to have it on any car.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Highlighted second photo shows damage perfectly

Definitely NOT warranty. I think comprehensive is your best route and in many cases there is no deductible.

It may not be the answer you are looking for, but think of it like this.

tree falls on your car
piece of debris thrown up by another car hits your car anywhere
hailstorm
flood
tornado

All are not warranty responsibilities of the selling manufacturer. Call your insurance company and have them look at your car, see what they say. I'll bet it is what I posted here. You should have comprehensive on any financed car and it's a VERY good idea to have it on any car.
I understand comprehensive insurance very well. Yes and like you said sometimes there is no deductible, but in this case its $500, hey, but that still better than $1000 of course, if the rates don't increase due to the claim. We had our insurance agent look at this so called road damage, and he has determined there is nothing to claim, that he didnt see any road damage to claim. He looked at the car on the ground and made that determination. I now have another mechanic scheduled to look at it, and hopefully the Insurance agent can be present as well. This is not over by a long shot. Thanks
 

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Highlighted second photo shows damage perfectly

Definitely NOT warranty.
That is possible, but I wonder if they really know that the "pinhole" leak is occurring in the spot where there bent cooling fins are?

Since the car showed up at the dealer with the A/C not working, I assume there was no refrigerant left inside the compressor, so did they actually put more refrigerant in it to determine where the leak was located?

Did they charge the customer for that refrigerant (since it was not covered under warranty)? I don't think so.
 

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Is it possible to check for leak with compressed air? System will have to be purged anyway.
 

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If I saw that obvious damage, why would I throw freon in it knowing it would just blow out the hole. Call the insurance company and figure out who is paying the bill. If it were mine and uninsured, I think I'd try that solder they advertise for aluminum.
 

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Or throw a vacuum on it and listen.
Maybe I am wrong, but it seems to me that 2nd dealer mechanic, when the car was on the lift and the owner was being shown the damage, that the mechanic would have demonstrated that the leak was in fact coming from that area. It was described by the original mechanic as a pinhole leak, so I assume not visible to the eye.
 
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