91 Honda CRX si, 1.6l, 165k.
A month ago, oil started pouring out the right side of the engine. The mechanic I was referred to changed the valve cover gasket, timing belt, crank seal, and cam seals. (That took a week and a half.) I was gentle with it as usual, and a half hour of drive time later, I noticed a slight vibration from no specific location, and started to hear a slight puttering sound coming from the tailpipe upon acceleration. Later, after it began to decel while climbing a hill in fourth wide open that it used to chew up in fifth, I took it back to the mechanic. I sat there watching for six hours, toward the end of which he decided the timing belt had stretched and replaced it. (It would be nearly impossible for a new belt to stretch, right?) I drove it home, and it seemed to be okay for half the trip, then started the same behavior. I took it back several days later when the mechanic had the time to deal with it. Two weeks later, he finally answered my call and told me that it was done, and that it was the plugs. Unbeknownst to him, I had stopped by and drove it the night before, and after letting it warm up, pushed it a little hard. It immediately started doing the same thing. What now?
I don't think this guy's trying to rip me off. He seems like he wants to be honest, but will not communicate. He just acts really cagey and says as little as possible. Maybe his twenty years of experience is centered around domestic cars. I don't think he really has any idea what's going on, and he probably doesn't want to continue to work for free to fix his error (if that's what it is.I'm afraid to wonder if maybe there's something more nasty going on deeper in the block where my wallet can't take me).
At this point, I really don't know what to do. Can you help to identify the problem or suggest my next move in this sticky situation? Obviously, I am unwilling to lose the $400 I already paid him to fix the car by taking it elsewhere. I think I'm stuck with this guy, but I don't know what to do with him now.
Thank you very much. I hope this is more than charity work for you. If so, know you're helping very needy people, and that it is very apreciated.
Friday, May 4th, 2007 AT 8:20 PM