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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife took the Element to the dealership this week for an oil change and the dealership said we needed some maintenance that doesn't seem right to me. FYI, mileage 75,000. I also looked back at my past service records to reference what had been done in the past.

Here are the recommendations:

1. Replace the valve cover gasket (supposedly leaking - just looks like road grime to me). This doesn't seem right because at 60,000 for the major service the dealer did the following: "inspect and adjust engine valve clearance" and replaced the "CYL HD CVR" So wouldn't adjusting the valves require the replacement of the valve cover gasket? I can't believe the gasket has started leaking 1.5 years and 15,000 miles later.

2. Power Steering Flush. Maybe - the color is amber/light brown, but $139.98 estimate to do that seems way too high for 10 minutes worth of work. Should I get it changed since it is not clear? I can always shop around for a cheaper price.

3. Replace Front and Rear Pads (and flush fluid) - both are at 2mm. At our 60,000 mile they recorded the front as 3.5mm and rear at 3mm. Would brakes wear at 1-1.5mm per year? I took a look at the brakes myself and the front could be at about 2mm but the rear is definitely not at 2mm, it looks about 2x as thick as the front pad.

So the question is what recommendations do I challenge the dealership about and which ones should actually be done?

Thanks for the help
 

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Well the brakes for sure as that seems pretty low and yes they can wear that fast. Try giving the cover bolts a little tightening and see if any are loose. As for the power steering do what you think is best.
 

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Consultant's Fee?

Dude,

You guys are something else! Really. Detailed questions. Good questions. I think there should be a 'take a penny; leave a penny' electronically so folks could get paid their due! what a forum!

PS - Welcome to the EOC! The rest of us whackoes will visit momentarily...
 

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They dont normaly replace the gasket when doing a valve adjustment. They only clean it and there is 3 or 4 places that they use hondabond on to seal it. I bet if its leaking that its on one of the corners from one of those areas. Mine seems to collect dirt in the front corner on the passanger side after a few thousand miles. I think it just seeps a little but I havent adjusted the valeves yet and Im not to worried about the gasket.

The power steering is never mentioned in the owners manual by honda so who knows when that should be done. I cheated on mine and used a small oil bottle pump to pump out the ps fluid and turned the wheel from lock to lock a for a few mins and repeated. I have driven like that for a few thousand miles and I think since I have some left over fluid I'll do it one more time. I dont think the fluid is perfectly clear even when new. I used pyroil for honda and acura. I would only use one that is for honda, honda genuine fluid or maybe amsoil universal ps fluid.

The breaks fully depend on your driving, as far as brake wear I have no idea but if your break fluid has never been changed or looks dark in the reserve than that should be changed because that fluid is almost clear when new. Any brand dot three will work. I did mine at a tire shop that I trust for roughly $50 and 15 min. PITA to do yourself and still kind of sucks with 2 people.
 
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