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While replacing the timing belt on my 2003 Hyundai Santa Fe, the mechanic who had worked on my car for 7 years, somehow destroyed my engine. They installed a rebuilt engine and gave me a 12,000 mile warranty. Within 4 months they had to replace the head gaskets on this engine. Am I doomed? I absolutely love this Santa Fe and wanted to drive it till the wheels fall off. That may be happening sooner than later. Is there anything the mechanic should be doing to give me some assurances that this will be the last of my problems? Thank you, you do a great job.

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Amy Mattinat, Owner and Author at Auto Craftsmen Ltd Hi Pat, With an older high mileage vehicle there WILL be future work to do as various parts wear out and need to be replaced. As I don't know the mileage on your re-built engine... it's hard to say whether or not you need to be worried about having the head gasket replaced. If your mechanic has done well for you for 7 yrs, this could have been just a fluke. If they did an engine job and the head gasket for free then they are taking good care of you.

Barb Petrey, President - DBK Enterprises Inc at Jiffy Lube You should ask your mechanic if he installed a re-manufactured engine or one out of the junk yard. Unfortunately, re-manufactured engines are more expensive so you may have to pay a portion of the engine. You may be able to go thru your insurance company for some compensation.

Gelina Aquilina, Service Advisor / Mechanic at Hey Pat, I'd make sure to take the car back within the warranty time to make sure they correct everything. It's really all you can do to avoid out of pocket costs. As long as they make it right for you, the new motor should last longer than a year if the repairs were done properly.

Helaine Kurot, Owner/Technician at 360 Automotive After they do the head gasket, the engine should be good for a while. Doing the head gasket is pretty close to a rebuild. Unfortunately, things do happen. There is no way of knowing if anything else will go wrong in the future. I would recommend having them check relative and running compression after they do the work to make sure everything else in the motor is happy and healthy at this time. Good Luck :)

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