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Re: Not a Quattro but...
Leah Mueller wrote:
> Dear Listers,
> The car is not a Quattro but seems to good to pass up as an excellent family
> car. Original owner with all the service records is offering an 86 5000s
> with five speed for sale. There are no leaks. The two things that concern
> me is the obvious check brake pad light and an original radio with no power.
> The radio is apparently in need of an inner fuse. The brakes were last done
> in 91. Would a good brake job normally fix the problem indicated by the
> light? Is the inner fuse a costly deal to fix? We are very close to buying
> this car, but I need a some of your experience in these two areas. Thanks.
1. The brake light is probably nothing. You need new pads, maybe
rotors, but in the grand scheme this can be done relatively
2. The radio... screw it. go to a junkyard and buy another. The radio
is far from wonderful on this car to begin with.
3. Test sun visors and headrests for normal motion.
4. Run the car at idle for as long as it takes for the radiator fan to
come on. If it seems that it comes on at a high speed, before it comes
on at a lower speed, you may need a $100-$200 repair. Hard to
understand, I know, but if it really huMMMMMMs, it's on high.
5. Make sure you can get heat from all vents.
6. crank steering wheel, do circles (clock and counterclockwise), make
sure you get no CLUNKLUNKLUNKLUNK.
7. check cruise control.
8. triple check all functions regulated by the switch (4 switches) on
the steering column.
9. be sure that the driver's door, when closed, can lock and unlock
10. make sure all windows work (if power, make sure all switches work)
11. double and triple check for leaks.
12. check back-up lights.
13. Triple and quadruple check the sunroof.
I know some of this is common sense.
I have an '86 5000s. Bought it 2 years ago. My first car. Many things
were broken on it when I bought it. I knew of about 2/3-- found the
other 1/3 in time.
THE GUY WHO SOLD IT SAID HE COULD NOT AFFORD THE UPKEEP. He had no
idea how to effectively, safely and inexpensively repair and maintain
his car. Kudos to this list and other people-- I have learned a great
deal. Most importantly, this car is inexpensive to care for. Many
repairs are easy, parts can be had cheaply (with a little ingenuity),
and I, at age 22, drive a nicer car than either of my parents. If some
of the above things don't work, a fix may be surprisingly inexpensive
if you shop around-- for example, I fixed #4-9 and #12 for under $400
Perhaps this reply isn't exactly what you looked for, and I'm sure
that you know what you're doing, but every flaw or fault betters your
end of the bargaining table. If you like the car, buy it. I'm
certainly glad that I did. The usual disclaimers, of course, apply.