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Discussion Starter #1
I am new to this forum and glad to see I am not the only one with the issues I am facing. I have an '01 RR HSE with 80k miles and I have EAS problems, impending blend motor failures (according to the dealer), coolant leaks, passenger seat heating issues and a few other more minor items that seem to be common. I was on the verge of giving up and dumping the vehicle until I came across this site.

Right now, the most critical to me is the EAS as I find my RR down on the bump stops every morning and it takes 10+ minutes to raise up to regular ride. Like many others, I have probably waited too long and allowed a leaking air spring to wear out my compressor and potentially damage other parts such as the bump stops.

Being in the United States (Chicago, IL), I think my best option is to install the Arnott air springs (not really sure of the difference between Gen II and Gen III, but the pricing is so close that it seems the latest generation is the best option even though I don't really go off road) and probably replace all of them at once. Unfortunately, the extent of my automotive repair experience ends at changing tires or jump starting a car. I can probably do the basic diagnostic work to track down the failing parts, but I would feel more comfortable taking my RR to a qualified mechanic to do the air spring and compressor replacement. Unfortunately, most mechanics I have spoken to are not experienced with Range Rover air suspensions and either recommend a coil conversion kit or to take the car to a Land Rover dealer. I am trying to avoid spending $3k or more on a car that isn't worth much more than that, so I thought I would turn to this forum for some advice.

Is everyone here doing their own repairs on their Range Rovers or are they using the tips here to guide their mechanics to cheaper solutions? The cheapest quote I have received for the work is $1850 to replace the air springs with a Strutmaster coil conversion kit with 4 replacement shocks. That still just seems like a lot of money to me and has me on the verge of dumping the car.

If anyone has suggestions on good mechanics in the Chicago area who could help with this work at a reasonable price, it would be much appreciated. If this work is really something that someone with very limited automotive repair experience could handle, please tell me to stop being a wimp and get my hands dirty to save over $1000.

Thanks,
Shane
 

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2006-2009 Range Rover MkIII / L322
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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

As hJames has just stated if you can read instructions you can do just about anything with these cars. Believe me I spent a fortune when I first purchased mine and many different mechanics had no idea what they were doing even after convincing me they did. Found this forum 2 years ago and have done all work myself...I am not a mechanic just like to have a go.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Work on these vehicles is not that hard, with the help of the forum I have rebuilt valve block, air suspension, replace, O rings, and about 100 other things. Pick your issue, start small (like the compressor) do a search, then ask the questions...you will get help. If you want you can PM me..I live in the NW Burbs...the stuff I can't handle..like Transfer case R&R I would go to Lindberg Automotive in Lake Zurich....they know Land Rovers and are active in the local LR Club...not the cheapest but they do good work..
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

I can tell you that leaky air bags are not an expensive fix. I believe replacement bags are in the vicinity of $200 a piece and require an hour or two of labor for each.

To answer one of your questions, I live at the mercy of my mechanic, who, thankfully, owns a 98 4.6. I don't have tools or the knowhow and I like someone else carrying the liability to do things right... I learn what needs to be done through the wisdom that's on this forum.

Fwiw, An 01 HSE in good shape with 80k is worth a good amount over $3k...more like $7-9k. Not sure if that makes you feel any better about dropping some money on it.
 

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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

I was like you when I bought my 2002 P38 with 81K miles. I replaced the airbags and shocks as well as some the brake pads and rotors. Like everyone says the instructions are on this site, and if you get in trouble there are plenty of folks who can help you out. Just take plenty of time reading the material on this site, get a repair manual, plan on it taking longer than you think and then have a cold beer when you are done. I have taken my RR to a local dealer for some major issues, but then I have an extended warranty that covered them, so my out of pocket was minimal. Good luck and stay warm up there.

David
 

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Airbags around $150 for a pair and take about 15-20 minutes each to install, compressor rebuild kit around $40-50 including a new cylinder and takes around a half hour to rebuild, valve body kits vary from $20-50ish for all the seals and will take a couple of hours to strip, clean and rebuild! No big deal, if you can change a wheel you can do this!


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Discussion Starter #8
Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Wow, thank you for all the responses! It sounds like I would not be the first person to give this a go with little experience, so I think it is worth a shot. I have pulled fuse 44 to disable the EAS and am letting the RR sit for a few days to see if I can figure out which bag is leaking, but from other discussions it seems my best bet is to just replace all of them with Arnott Gen III's since they are all bound to fail soon. I think I am going to start with the air spring replacement and see if the compressor or valve block even have issues.

A few follow up questions (for now):
  1. The air spring replacement guide on this site mentions that you can do this work either with one jack (and not even removing the wheel) while others recommend using multiple jack stands. Since I will be doing this in my garage and not out in the field, is using the jack stands the better way to go?
  2. Does replacing the bump stops with the Arnott bump stop kit while I am under there make sense? I am afraid I may have gone too long without fixing the air spring issue and potentially damaged the existing bump stops. For $50, it seems like a good move assuming that work is also relatively easy.
  3. Should I be worried about the dryer or other parts right now or should I wait to start seeing symptoms before I worry about them?
Thanks for all the help,
Shane
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Hi mate,
When I replaced my bags I had a level spot in the garage....up an a stand....jack for raising and relieving pressure on bag......wheel removed.

I did not replace my bump stops as they looked ok..(I was also looking on the positive side that maybe I would never be down there again......how wrong Was I.)

I would just take it one step at a time...ie bags then check thoroughly for leaks and go from there. As you rightly stated you may not have an issue with some of the other parts.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Just to be absolutely positive I have leaking bags (all signs point to it), I raised the RR to normal ride height, opened the tailgate, shut off the ignition and pulled fuse F44 to disable the EAS. I then closed it up and left it overnight. When I went back to it less than 24 hours later, all four corners are sitting down on the bump stops. While it is possible that all four have such bad leaks that they all lost complete pressure overnight, it seems unlikely. Does pulling fuse F44 disable things properly? I have seen others mention to pull fuse 17 or unplug the EAS timer. Do I need to do more than one of these to completely disable it or do I likely have bad leaks in all four bags?

Thanks,
Shane
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

When I replied your question was how to replace all bags, which is what I thought you were going to do......disabling the EAS should work with both 44 or 17 however I have checked mine by leaving the tailgate and one door open......have you tried soapy water yet?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

When I replied your question was how to replace all bags, which is what I thought you were going to do......disabling the EAS should work with both 44 or 17 however I have checked mine by leaving the tailgate and one door open......have you tried soapy water yet?
I do intend to replace them all. I just wanted to experiment to see if there was currently only one leaking and was surprised to see it lower to the bump stops with F44 pulled. With the current cold temperature here in Chicago I didn't want to leave the tailgate or door open overnight, even though it would probably be fine. Thanks again for all the help.

Shane
 

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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Airbags around $150 for a pair and take about 15-20 minutes each to install, compressor rebuild kit around $40-50 including a new cylinder and takes around a half hour to rebuild, valve body kits vary from $20-50ish for all the seals and will take a couple of hours to strip, clean and rebuild! No big deal, if you can change a wheel you can do this!


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Where do you get a pair of bags for $150?
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Mate if I were in your position the first thing I would do is check for air leaks.....and I mean ALL areas.(this can be. Found easily when searched....bags collets lines etc...) This will at least give you a starting point with definite answers. The other urgent point I picked up from your initial post was Coolant Leak. This problem on these vehicles must not be overlooked they do not like running over temperature and any repairs MUST be done as a priority.....this is just my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Thanks for the suggestions. I believe the coolant leak is under control as I had the o-rings replaced almost a year ago and have not had to refill the coolant since.

This might seem like a dumb question, but is there an easy way to find the exact source of a leak around the valve block? Soapy water will obviously work for the air springs, but is it a bad idea to start spraying water around under the hood where there are electrical components or are they all protected?
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

As stated before there's plenty of info to read about....being specific, yes you can spray soapy water all over the valve block where the airline connections attach...there should not be any air bubbles ....I if there is could be a crack in the line or faulty orings....obviously you would only spray at the joins...lines....not willy nilly all over the place
 

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Both Arnott and Suncore have eBay stores and both often have our bags for sale in pairs for around the $150 mark along with lifetime warranties and free shipping, just do a search !


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Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Search? What's that?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Re: RR.net Repair Tips for Mechanics (Chicago Area Suggestions?)

Both Arnott and Suncore have eBay stores and both often have our bags for sale in pairs for around the $150 mark along with lifetime warranties and free shipping, just do a search !
What are opinions on this site related to the Suncore air springs? I have seen a lot of positive feedback regarding the Arnott Gen III springs, but the Suncores are slightly cheaper. Do you get what you pay for or are the Suncore Gen III springs comparable? I searched and found a few threads from people who purchased and installed the Suncores, but I couldn't find many comments from users about durability or their handling of customer support issues. I am hoping to verify these leaks as soon as it is warm enough to go outside here in Chicago and then I want to place and order and get them all replaced (as well as a valve block and compressor rebuild if necessary).
 
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