April 29

1987 Toyota Celica GTS Brake Repair

Auto Repair, Toyota


Mark: Hi it’s Mark from Top Local Lead Generation we’re here with Bernie Pawlik of the award winning Pawlik Automotive - 16 time winners of Best Auto Repair in Vancouver as voted by their customers. How’re you doing today Bernie?

Bernie: I’m doing very well.

Mark: So we’re going to talk about a little bit of an oldie but classic, I guess, in some ways to some people, the ’87 Toyota Celica GTS. There was a brake repair needed on this car, what’s the story?

Bernie: Well, you’re right it is getting to be a bit old, I was just thinking this car is 29 or 30 years old. It kind of shocks me when I think about it because when I remember when these cars were brand new and they were awfully nice. So what was going on with this Toyota, it was a bit of an old car, not in the best of shape, it was pretty rusty but obviously had some great value to the owner. He said there are some problems, it makes bad noises when I go around a corners and when I hit the brakes. So that’s basically why the car was brought in - driving noises and braking noises.

Mark: So you did an inspection, what did you find from your inspection?

Bernie: Well, lots of interesting things. I’ll start with the good stuff, the back brake pads and rotors were in good shape, let’s start with that, but the front brakes were worn metal on metal. Metal on metal means that the brake pads, they have a soft friction material and when they’re worn out, the metal backing plate rubs against the brake rotor which is metal, so that’s what metal on metal refers to. The brakes were worn down that far, which is worn out completely and causes horrible grinding noises. The brake calliper slider pins were seized, we also found, it’s a front wheel drive and we found one of the axel nuts on the left side was loose and that was causing the brake rotor to rub against the calliper bracket. That was easily fixed, just tighten the nut and away it went, that was fixed up but other than that it required some front brake work and also the brake hoses were cracked which happens when the vehicle gets older.

Mark: Ok, that is starting to add up to a lot of work for an old car. Was it in good shape? Was it worth fixing?

Bernie: Well, the car I mean in my opinion wasn’t in great shape and I wouldn’t of blamed the owner for saying you know I’m sending if off to the scrap yard, but he chose to fix it. I think to me, it’s really the value of the car is what he as the owner put on it and whether you want to fix it or not. Sometimes as technicians and shop owners we have judgments, oh this car’s not worth fixing or this one is and we get people with really nice cars that choose to not fix things, I kind of roll my eyes and then we get someone who takes a car that we think oh, this is a foot away from the scrap yard and they go, yeah I want to fix it and spend some money on it. So it’s really up to the owner to choose what they want to do. We’ll just have a quick look at this car here, just for nostalgia sake, it’s a ’87 Celica. There’s a bit of rust on this car so it’s not in great shape but after doing the repairs it actually ran really well; peppy, it’s got a lot of power so it’s got lots of life left in it and the mileage on the car isn’t particularly high so it will probably go for quite a while if the body doesn’t rust out completely on it.

Mark: So people don’t think about the big picture cost of car ownership always, why do you think that is?

Bernie: You know, I think people get emotionally attached to cars and they have these notions, I’ve had a number of people go, well the car’s only worth $4000 dollars and I don’t want to spend half the value of the car on repairing it and to me, I mean this Celica here is probably, he’d be lucky to get $500 bucks if you sold it on the open market, maybe a thousand but the repair was far in excess of value but what does it cost you to actually replace a car in terms of your time, you know looking for a car, the actual replacement cost, the added insurance? You just really need to sit down and really look at the facts and figures and the money and try to take the emotion out of it sometimes. Sometimes the cheapest car to fix is the car, or to operate is the car you already own. That being said, sometimes it gets to the point where it’s not worth doing certain things, we’re quite clear about that but you really have to sit and look at the money. People often go, I don’t want to spend $2000 dollars on that. Two thousand dollars might be all they spend on a repair in one yea. If you break that down to monthly payments, that’s under $200 dollars a month. Where are you going to buy a new car for that kind of money? You’d be lucky, you’d be making car payments and even the cheapest car is going to cost you $300 bucks a month and you’d probably be doing that for the next 10 years. But if you’re buying a nice car, which a lot of people are repairing you might be paying a $1000 bucks a month. So it doesn’t cost a lot to repair a car when you really break it down and look at it.

Mark: So any final thoughts on this service?

Bernie: Well you know, just the whole idea of doing this blog post, www haven’t talked too much about the brakes and the repair details, it’s really about what’s the value of the car to you and is it worth fixing and keeping going and how do you want to spend your money? That’s kind of the key thing. Some people love spending money on cars and some people don’t. We’re here to help which ever way you want to go. I’m happy to talk to people and work with them make a decision.

Mark: So if you need a reliable mechanic who will tell you the truth about your choices and be happy to go with you whatever way you want to go. You want to keep that old gem running forever, they’ll help you do that. If you want to get a real idea about that new car you’re looking at buying, Bernie is an expert, he’s done it for a long time. Give him a call 604-327-7112 or check out their website pawlikautomotive.com. Thanks Bernie

Bernie: Thanks Mark.

About the author 

Bernie Pawlik

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