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MOT and Dust Cover failures

Tony PF03

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I was wondering if anyone might be able to offer their view and advice on my MOT failure reasons. My car is a 2003 S Type, 3L, V6 and it has had the following marked as failure:  

* Nearside Rear Anti-roll bar linkage ball joint dust cover excessively deteriorated so that it no longer prevents  the ingress of dirt drop link (2.4.G.2)
* Offside Rear Anti-roll bar linkage ball joint dust cover excessively deteriorated so that it no longer prevents the ingress of dirt drop link (2.4.G.2)
* Nearside Rear Tie bar/rod ball joint dust cover excessively deteriorated so that it no longer prevents the ingress of dirt tie arm (2.4.G.2)
* Offside Rear Tie bar/rod ball joint dust cover excessively deteriorated so that it no longer prevents the ingress of dirt tie arm (2.4.G.2)
* Offside Rear Lower Suspension arm has excessive play in a pin/bush suspension arm rear inner bush (2.4.G.2)
The top four seem quite trivial for an MOT failure but looking at the MOT Handbook the check and rejection seems to have been introduced in January 2012.
The concern I have is that the garage is saying they can only get the parts from Jaguar and their estimate (including the MOT cost) is 1000 pounds!
A few Google searches seem to indicate the dust covers should be no more than a few pounds and a great YouTube video indicates their replacement should be quite straightforward.
Unfortunately I am not a mechanic and actually live in the US keeping the car in the UK for our annual visits - although the car is used gently by family whilst we are in the US.
Can anyone give an opinion on the quote being about right or over priced, can the items be easily obtained and if so from where, and should I just bite the bullet or take the car elsewhere?
My best regards
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Hi Tony,

There is an independent Jaguar Garage in Swindon which could be much cheaper and n worth trying --even a 'phone call might gove you some idea,

Just google Wiltshire Jaguar for the number.



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The major expense there will be the suspension arm bush. Jaguar only offer a complete arm and not individual bushes. Their rationale is that us mere mortals could never change the bushes without cocking it up and damaging their finely crafted aluminium arm.

Well that's rubbish in my opinion, several companies sell after-market bushes and a good garage should have no qualms about fitting them to the arms. I'm not a qualified mechanic and I did just this the other week. See the link below for my write up.

I'd wager that the garage is quoting for a whole arm as most, if not all, motor factors don't offer the bushes. While it's true that the labour costs will be higher the savings on parts will far outweigh them. You should be able to get both sides re-bushed for far less than one side this way. It's good practice to balance suspension work side-to-side plus the other side will not be far behind the one that's failed.

The dust boots are worthwhile assuming the ball-joints have no play in them of course. If the drop links show even the slightest wear then just have them replaced as they're relatively cheap considering you will be paying for labour.

I touch on the subject of track rods in the post above and would say that if they need replacing then it's definitely worth spending the money on quality, maybe even genuine, ones. The cheapy ones I had were awful and actually made the car dangerous to drive in no time at all. 

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