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11 hrs Labor @ $150/hr to Replace Lift Pump


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The last 150 miles of our last trip we were running low on power hesitation or no power at times. Figured either clogged fuel filter, cracked fuel line or electric lift pump was the cause. I took the rig, a  '07 Cayman with ISB325 engine with 22K miles, in for oil change and routine maintenance along request to look into low power. I told the at the time that I suspected the electric lift pump because of it's reputation for failure. The shop replaced fuel filters and called it good to go. Charged me for 2-1/2 of diagnostics reading to codes which showed low pressure at the injector pump which they interpreted to be clogged fuel filters.
 
When I went to pick up the rig I didn't get a block from the shop when again, hesitation, low power and white smoke. I immediately returned to the shop and informed them they had not solved the low power issue. They then kept it for another week. Test drove it and noted the hesitation and low power. First action was to replace air filter even though the filter indicator showed no issue. Test drove it again and found low power and hesitation when climbing a hill. They then tested the fuel pressure at the injector pump and found pressure within spec. but on the low end of the spec. While testing the lift pump apparently totally failed. They called to get my authorization to replace the lift pump which I agreed to.
 
Yesterday when I went in to pick it for the 2nd time, I was greeted with a bill of $1936 of which $1470 was labor. (9.8 hrs @ $150/hr.) This shop charges an extra $20/hr over their rate for large trucks. Their reasoning is the fact that RVs are much harder to work on. They claimed to have to remove an engine cage and the ECM to access the lift pump which added to the number of hours. All totaled they billed me for 11 hours ($1650) between the first time in the shop and the second time. Much of this time was diagnostics. I felt like this was far too much time for this kind of repair.
 
Just curious if anyone else has been charged this much for replacement of the electric lift pump.
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Holy smokes.  Makes my high pressure pump I replaced sound not so bad.  However, If I was in that situation, probably would have abandoned the stock lift pump and had them install the FASS system, I think for cheaper.  Will be doing that to my Cayman next year I think.   

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To some extent I  am not surprised.  On my 8.3 ISC the lift pump is accessible from the bedroom closet hatch but it would be tedious to work on.   Not sure it would have taken me ~10 hours to do it but decided not to even find out.  When my lift pump started to leak I decided to just by pass and install a FASS pump, which I have ~$1000 into total including fuel gauge.  Gut it did take me several days to install that but my labor cost was ZERO

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I had my pump replaced back in 2014 and it was 10 hours at $125/hour at that time.  I think it depends on how accessible everything is. Each motorhome is a little different and a lot of shops do charge more to work on motorhomes.  Just the way it is.

Diane

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The price really depends on whether the coach has a side radiator or rear radiator. Access to the engine determines the final cost.

Cummins in Coburg OR changed out my lift pump back in 2015. If I remember correctly the cost for the pump was around $350 and a few hours labor.

The main reason I was there was due to a small coolant hose had ruptured near the back top of the engine. They replaced the bad section then put it on their Insight Computer System and discovered multiple hits for low fuel pressure. The tech started searching and found that the lift pump was leaking ever so slightly. Diesel fuel never reached the pavement therefore I never realized that it was leaking. The small drips were landing on the starter which is directly below the lift pump.

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Not that familiar with the OP’s ISB engine and where the lift pump is located. While a bad lift pump on a ISB will result in loss of power, on larger engines it will NOT…on a ISB it runs all the time but only on startup on ISC, ISL, ISX engines for approximately 30 seconds. Putting a $1000 Fass pump on a larger Cummins engine to replace something that runs 30 seconds is not on my list of “upgrades”.

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I think my $1000 investment in a FASS upgrade is more of a preventative long term solution. 

The old lift pump is a weak point on my ISC.   Cummins put out a TSB on it back in 2006 initially recommending replacement if it was found leaking but ultimately left it up to owners.  My guess is they saw the writing on the wall as to a long term problem and decided to just sweep it under the rug.

Now with these engines getting age and miles on them I read more and more of CAPS pump failures, which in all likelihood was caused by the lift pump. 

So when my lift pump started to leak late last year I started looking at option.  A new OEM lift pump was +$400, aftermarkets cheaper.  I was seeing numerous posts on the IRV2 forum of people installing the FASS of Airdog transfer pumps.  Looked at the pros and cons and decided to be proactive and abandon the old lift pump and install the lift.  Wit the fuel pressure gauge on now see that I'm getting positive pressure to the pump all the time versus wondering if the lift pump failed.  For the ~$600 difference I played it safe.  The FASS version I installed has two filters and improves fuel quality, another plus!

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10 hours ago, johnfr said:
Yesterday when I went in to pick it for the 2nd time, I was greeted with a bill of $1936 of which $1470 was labor. (9.8 hrs @ $150/hr.) This shop charges an extra $20/hr over their rate for large trucks. Their reasoning is the fact that RVs are much harder to work on. They claimed to have to remove an engine cage and the ECM to access the lift pump which added to the number of hours. All totaled they billed me for 11 hours ($1650) between the first time in the shop and the second time. Much of this time was diagnostics. I felt like this was far too much time for this kind of repair.

You took it to "Professionals".  The $20/hr upcharge is simply a fee for folks with excess $$$ since they can afford a motorhome.  I can see the clock spinning round and round while they fiddle with it, that's what happens when I work on my coach at home.  On the side of the road I'm much faster. :classic_biggrin:

My pickup trucks are replaced enough that they are in warranty most of the time.  I couldn't get the service writers to interpret my diagnosis so I started leaving a paper describing the issue on the console.  Some technicians couldn't be bothered reading it.  Many returns for the same problem. :classic_wacko:

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