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Cooldammy 14th December 2016 03:54 PM

Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Dear all,


This is the first ever time, that I am writing into a automotive website, so moderators and others please help me with any of the improper things.
This is my first vehicle to start with my driving life.
I own a second hand Maruti Esteem Vxi(2005) model, pearl silver, with almost 91 K(At present) odometer reading.
I bought it at 83 K (Around 20 months ago) and the previous owner didn't co-operate much about the previous servicing records.
It gives me 16-18 kmpl on highways and 13-15 kmpl in city driving.
Top speed tested is 130- 135 kmph without any unsteadiness.
I don't drive it much, but do regular washing at home and cranking.

I have done under body antirust coating, internal cabin floor painting, rear trunk floor painting and there is almost no more leakage in the car.
Though there was not a major leakage before also, but I am very much particular about even these small leakages.
There was a very small amount of water leaking from the left wiper cowl area into the cabin( I think that is a common problem with almost most of the cars growing old), but I insisted to my family friend mechanic for repairing it and during that, when the dashboard was opened, I removed the seats, and did some DIY cleaning, rust removal and cleaning and then he painted the floor for me.

Washing the floor mat was a very dramatic task, as the fine sand was not at all ready to vanish, even after repeated soap wash, vacuuming and rubbing. Believe me, I must have removed almost a kg of fine sand from it (Wish there was a option to just buy a new one and replace)
There was another very small leakage under the rear hood, near the spoiler attachment, which could have been easily managed with a small M Seal, but I did some DIY stuff at home. I removed the dikky-rubber packing and I found that there were many areas of rust, which couldn't be left like that, after I have seen them.
So, cleaned it, went to a local shop, where he welded small sections and then applied some car-patch, putty and coloured and entire boot brand new.

I'm also a DIY guy and keep trying things at home...

I removed the entire wiper assembly, cleaned the cowl area (Almost 200 gms of dust and fine sand, which was stuck with immense power to the body) sanded the rusted areas and painted them brand new. Also changed the hinges of the bonnet at the same time.

I have also removed all the four door panels, changed the door stoppers myself, greased the PW(Which are now smoothest, compared to my previous servicing experiences at other PW service centers, who had finally suggested me to change the door channels, if I need a butter smooth PW).
I also did a major cleaning of the wiring arrangement in the driver side, where almost every technician from various places ( like Autocop, Mass, rear view camera n mirror fitting, LED fittings etc.) had left their extra wires hanging and the panel was not even fitting into the socket properly.
I trimmed and rearranged almost all of them and now the panel fits in properly and also, I got a fair knowledge about the electricals and hence, do not need to run to the electrician every now and then and pay them for small or even medium level jobs.[clap]

Battery repair, H/L bulb changed to Philips extreme vision 130 +.
changed the colour of the instrument cluster to red, and many more such DIY stuffs.
I have plans to do a lot more DIY stuffs too, but firstly, I wish to take care of the big things, that I can't do at home myself and is totally garage dependent and most importantly, they are the basic things to keep the ride, safe, smooth and pleasing.

I have done around 2-3 paid servicing at MASS (More than 2 centers), WA and WB done twice outside (Recent was 2 months ago). Recently, also went to a MASS, where they did the tune up, throttle body cleaning and said that once I get a paid service done at their center, they can provide a better picture on further maintenance requirements and improvements.

So, now, I wish to get a paid servicing done and I think an Engine oil change should be must, as mostly everyone suggested me to get it changed in some time but not a very urgent one.

My basic question is whether it is good to get a detailed 80 KM servicing done at MASS or should I get it from a known mechanic outside, as I'm not sure if the previous owner did this and unlikely that he must have done this, coz, he was planning to buy a new car.( I don't know, what to be done in the 80 kms servicing, as I do not have a owners manual where I can read this. Also upon searching on net, I got old esteem manual and upon searching for 80 km servicing, most of them refer to look into the car's owners manual, as it vary for different cars).

The outside guy is very trustworthy, as he is a family friend, but most of the time, these people don't have interest[cry] for old vehicles, esp esteem, 800, type and they either turn a deaf ear for your small complaints and if you insist more, then they try to convince you that the job is not required or not worth for the old vehicle or else will ask your vehicle to be left into the garage, and you do not know what is being exactly done there.

On the other side, the MASS guys(As everyone is aware) are not always helpful in the right direction and tend to misguide, loot or discourage you.
Also, their labour charges, service charges and other stuffs tend to drain money (Of course, there is no harm in spending it at least once, if it is a guaranteed stuff and legitimate repairs, services being carried out) which is always a considerable point to think for alternate options.

So all the champions of automobiles, please help me with improvising my esteem love, experience and pleasure, as I just love this car[:)] (Though, it underwent a accident repair last year, but still don't wanna sell it and rather try to improvise it and keep it in long run.) Also, don't plan to sell it and buy another good condition esteem, as I do
not wish to search, examine and repair/service another unknown car.

1) Which Oil is good for the petrol Vxi esteem? Cost?

2) The Mass guy last time told me that they can even do the wheel servicing next time when I come early in the morning along with a paid service. What is this wheel servicing? and how to confirm if I need this? One thing for sure that the rims are old, look rusty, but there has been no hassle in driving( like the top speed and mileage) except for some cluck-cluck type of noise coming on and off, sometime). Also, I changed the left front wheel bearing from my outside guy around a few months back, when there was some noise coming from the tyres, as if something is rubbing against the roads. The noise was settled for some time but started again, and finally settled after I got the WA done.

3) During the accident, the gear box had to be changed and with elapsing time it is getting better and better, but the 2nd gear is still a bit hard (Is it the same case with most cars, since this gear is the most frequent one in action, in city driving) and need tips for making it more smooth (I remember it to be almost close to butter smooth, before the accident, though not very sure, as I was a totally novice for driving business at that time) Gear oil was also topped up last year.

4) The exhaust system: How to make sure that it is in best working conditions?
From my E learning and small experience, I understand that, as long as there is good amount of water coming out of the exhaust tail end, your exhaust is fine and the same is the case with my car too. But, some times,(Mostly, after starting the car for the first time before a drive) some atypical smell comes, which leaves me in doubts, as if something is just not right.

5) The suspensions are ok as of now, but since a car gets bumped sometime or the other on some notorious speed breakers or potholes, I just want to make sure they are inspected properly and if required then get the servicing done, rather than the time comes where I need to replace them.
Many more queries to come, but that will come out, as the discussion progresses.

I am in no hurry and you all can take your time and pay kind attention towards my queries and help my flourish my knowledge in the automobile world.

Thank you all in advance

Damodar M

generalmax 14th December 2016 04:41 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem servicing - MASS or outside?
If you go to MASS with a 10 year old car, they will find out almost all things are wrong in that machine. They will bill you too. If you are OK with that ,you can go to MASS. For regular maintenance, you need a friendly neighborhood garage (FNG) .
The wheel servicing, that he is talking may be about brake cleaning.

Suryaputhra 14th December 2016 10:34 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem servicing - MASS or outside?
@Cooldammy good to see that you want keep the car, me to love old cars, emotionally attached to them. Give me sometime to guide you to bring back your esteemed esteem, India's first proper sedan.


Cooldammy 15th December 2016 10:14 AM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Thanks generalmax and Suryaputhra(Waiting for your further inputs).
From some more research, I read that Maruti recommends SF 20W40 oil for Esteem.
I can conclude that it has to be something **W40, but what should be the initial number (?)W40. I think the smaller the number, the higher the price and quality?
So, do I need 5W40 synthetic one or 10 W 40Semi or something better combination.
Also, do I need any preparations before changing Oil, coz, I read words like Engine flush and other similar words in regards to Oil change posts. And, do I need to consider looking into anything/procedures/repairs/replacements (Like clutch assembly, gears, belts, compressor, etc, which might require changing Engine oil? So that I can get my hands on that stuff first and then go for engine oil change and avoid repeating the unnecessary oil change?(I hope I am understood)


VISHNUCARCRAZY 16th December 2016 07:58 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
If you are not sure about what specification oil is previously in the engine,then drain the oil,flush it and then fill the oil that you have now.
If clutch makes noise ,or the play is less (Even after setting the play ),then only clutch assembly needs a check.
If the gear play is excessive or the gear also doesn't slot up properly ,then only check the gear assembly ,and top up the gear oil if necessary.
Belts needs tightening (Can only be said by checking the nut ),if it makes noise ,mostly belts start to make noise at 40k interval.

Driveright 16th December 2016 08:13 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Hi, going through your post didn't indicate any obvious problems you are having with your vehicle.Its good that you are proactively looking around for potential threats detrimental to your car.I would suggest you to take the car to your known mechanic get a thorough inspection by him and his suggestion s regarding any repairs/ replacements of parts. Try to categorise into 'must do','good to do' and 'wait to do' the repairs mentioned .Go to your MGP dealer and find out costs of parts if needed.Also check with the MASS for a thorough service check up and estimate .Compare the two and go with the one which you think is reasonable for the present condition the vehicle is at now .

Cooldammy 20th December 2016 10:33 PM

5 Attachment(s)
I took my esteem to MASS.
Agreed for paid service (Rs.1200) and brake cleaning (Rs.1100 plus some Rs.400 charges for caliper greasing and it was compulsory). Total Labour charges: Rs2700.
Oil charges Rs.1300. So, I estimated the final cost to be in and around 5k.
The Mechanic removed all the four wheels and after sometime the receptionist came to me with an estimate of around 9.5K, stating that the cylinder(Jammed), costing about 900 each and liners(Worn out), costing about 1200, of both the rear wheels needs replacement.
I was feeling the typical money draining policy effect of MASS and was clueless as to what to be done and who to be contacted.
I finally got the SA, with whom I had the taken the trial and asked him about it.
He took me to the spares shop, where he checked the prices and to my surprise, the cylinders were costing around 275 and the liners were at 450 each side and the final estimated cost came down to Rs.7k and I took a sigh of relief.
I gave them a go ahead and waited for the procedures.

Initially I was told that the cylinders were leaking.
When I asked the mechanic as to where was it leaking, he told me that it wasn't leaking, but has jammed and thus needs replacement.
Is it true? Can't it be serviced or something?(Just a query to find out the genuineness of MASS services, otherwise no harm in spending Rs. 275 for it)
I also read somewhere that, "It is important that the cylinder be in good condition. Inspect the cylinder bore for signs of pitting, scoring, or scratching. Any sign of pitting, scoring, or scratching requires cylinder replacement.", But the mechanic didn't even take out the cylinder from the backing plate and said that it needs to be replaced.
Also, I remember reading in TAI or elsewhere, that during the brake cleaning they need to clean all the parts with petrol or something else and then refit it. But the mechanic didn't clean it. He didn't even bother to remove the rust from the backing plate.
Is this right?
The same procedure for the front wheels too. No cleaning, but just the caliper greasing (Hardly a 10-15 mins job and costing Rs.400[anger]) and scrubbing of the brake shoes.

Anyways, after this they topped up the brake oil and bleeding and tightening was carried out. I rotated the wheels with my hand and could feel the freedom of movement, except for the rear right one, which was a bit less free. They said that over a period of time it will get free.

Kindly find the Pictures.

Attachment 217007

Attachment 217008

Attachment 217009

Coming to the paid service:
The SA Inspected the oil and said that the oil isn't dark and sticky too, but since I haven't changed it for at least past 20 months(Though the running is only 8K), it is better to get it changed.
Also, no need for flushing treatment, since the old oil is not in bad state.
As VishnuCarcrazy suggested, I asked the SA, if I need anything to be checked before oil change.
He said that there is no play in the clutch and he will handle it.(Surprisingly, none of the previous MASS pointed it out and set it and it was not a time consuming job too, just unscrewing a small nut)
Also, the belts needed tightening. Rest is clear for the oil change.
They only had Total quartz and Castrol options and I chose for Castrol Magnatec 10W40 oil. Total 3.5 Litres with MGP Oil filter change. (Hope, I made the right choice)
But, they didn't have a fresh Castrol oil (The one they had was 2013 packing), so I brought it from outside and they changed it.
That's it and the final bill was around 5.2K + 1300 Oil from outside.
Rest was all fine, as per SA and after riding the car, I could feel the change in power and smoothness as well.[clap]
Summarizing the event with the following questions:
1) What is the idling RPM for esteem? Mine is set at around 700-800)
2) What happens when we ride the car with the hand brakes accidentally on?
3) Does the backing plate needs to be cleaned during brake service?
4) Caliper greasing, cost vs procedure ?
5) Can Cylinders be serviced and reused?
6) How to know if the play in the gear is right? I asked some question about gears, in the beginning also. Only the second gear is hard, but it slots in properly(Though sometimes hard, that's it)

Damodar M

Attachment 217010

Attachment 217011

VISHNUCARCRAZY 22nd December 2016 07:47 AM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
1.Idle rpm set is correct
2.The tyres will screech (You are arresting the torque in the wheels ),the vehicle will move in a sluggy pace.
3.Backing plate ?,I didn't get you .
4.Calliper greasing is a simple procedure by which ,the slider pin ,within the caliper assembly is cleaned with a grit mesh or sandpaper ,and then coated with grease or silica based lubricant.
Normally it comes as part of Brake overhauling procedure,hence the amount 400 rs.It is a standard rate for brake overhauling.
5.No cylinder's can't be serviced (As opening the cylinder and servicing costs more time and bill),its easy to go for new one.
6. Gear play can be checked by -
Position to neutral ,see how the lever moves sideways .
While driving ,in 3rd gear ,you want to upshift to 4th ,while the gear tends to slot into 3rd ,this means the play is excessive.

How much did the brake shoes cost ,and can you post image of the bill.

Cooldammy 25th December 2016 12:51 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Backing plate (May be I'm using a wrong word) is the mounting plate on which the cylinder, brake liners, etc are fitted. You can see in the picture, how rusted and dirty it is and the mechanic didn't even bother to give it a hands on with petrol or even simple sandpaper.
The gear lever is free in the neutral position and also gearshifting is not anything like you said. But, just the case that the 2nd gear sometimes resists me for slotting in.
The Brake shoe cost was around 450 for one side.
Sorry, will post the pic of the bill.....I'm not able to find it right now, may be I kept it somewhere in the car.[frustration]

VISHNUCARCRAZY 26th December 2016 09:15 AM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Brake shoes normally come in pairs na?
Rear (pair)

Cooldammy 6th January 2017 08:17 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
Yes Sir
Rs.450 +/- for one pair of Brake Shoes.

K K Datta 6th January 2017 10:04 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
In Kolkata I take it to Calcutta Motors Joydeb Ghosh. I have seen esteems coming from pan India to him. He is like magic for esteems. I was taking my 2005 to MASS but after seeing his work I have started taking it to his shop only. He also does all mods. I recently got a paint job done including headers and rally clutch

Cooldammy 7th January 2017 05:31 PM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
You actually need a careful handler, knowledgeable person and most importantly a person willing to work on your esteem with interest,... only then you can expect (Though not fully ensure) some good and relevant job being done.
I recently took mine to the FNG for the rear bumper area PM. I shall soon discuss it in other thread. But, I had to struggle there, to get the job done as per my expectations and still, spend more time, money and labour, than whatever was expected.:cool:
Anyways, incidentally I got a very good help there with regards to my starter motor [clap]......I'll discuss that thing in yet another thread.

Akash1886 3rd October 2017 08:15 AM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
4 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by Cooldammy (Post 524245)

Hi Buddy,

Read your query about the servicing/owner manual for your Esteem and the Central Locking wiring issues. I had sold my Esteem VXI (2006) in March 2017 but the Owner's manual is still with me just in case to help in queries like yours[:)] However, apart from the Owner's manual, all other warranty cards and manual had been given to the new owner during sale.



pradip60 2nd July 2018 02:26 AM

Re: Maruti Esteem Servicing: MASS or Outside?
I am Pradip. Staying at NOIDA. Do not know whether this is the right place of the forum to put my problem. Purchased maruti esteem LXI 2007. Fitted CNG kit in 2013. Recently (since 2-3 months) following problem noticed.
Starting - no problem.
After running for 15-20 Km, the engine start jerking on load. During idle engine speed is hunting. pick up also getting reduces. It is happening both in petrol and CNG. Got checked by number of mechanic. Could not identify the problem. any suggestion?

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