The service manager called a few minutes ago. They said the entire job will cost $1100 but since they feel responsible for most of the trouble, they will only charge me $150 to cover the cost of the evaporator. I agreed to it. They are eating the labor which will take 1.5 days to complete. I have to take my Jeep back on Thursday since they had to order the part.
Good deal and sounds like a winner! Kinda figured the $600 in labor on their first quote was waay underestimated for what a dealer normally charges for an evaporator replacement.
Wonder if you'd be pushing your luck in asking them to change out the heater core at the same time at your cost? After all they're going to have it sitting right there in front of them with it disconnected and the top of the box off. Believe I'd pay $150 for a new OE heater core and $50 in labor if they agreed to it. Just a thought and you may head off any potential problems down the road. Good luck!
I would say, " Hey since your having to take the a/c out of the jeep and split it in half to get the condenser out. Would you please replace the heater core also". It sits right next to the condenser. They should only charge you for the heater core. Before asking them this. Call up there, ask for parts, and see if they have a heater core in stock and how much it is. You'll be way ahead of them if you do this. I've delt with them enough that I don't no more. They know all the tricks to keep you coming back and spending your hard earned money. I took my jeep in for the water getting in the floor board. They followed the fsm. But instead of drilling straight. They drilled at a downward angle so it would still leak after blowing the leaves out that had it clogged. Told me I would have to bring it back. $1100 to remove the a/c, split it and put a new bottom on it. I caught them by overlooking what they did. Took it back and showed them how the tech drilled at an angle. I argued for an hour with everybody it seemed. The finally agreed to repairing it. After getting it back. I ended up taking the a/c out myself to put three mounting studs back in that they left off. And put a drain hose on it. Now I know it's in right and will never leak inside. I know not everyone is capable of that. It's alot of work.
Been going some searching and don't see why they wouldn't install a new heater core in it for $200. They'll still most likely be making some money off of it since would say they're using new aftermarket parts.
An OE/Mopar evaporator MSRP online at Mopar-Wholesale is $309, minus $90.70 in savings, for a total of $218.30 plus shipping. And normally they're a lot cheaper than the dealer. So if the dealer is charging you $150 for the new evaporator it almost has to be aftermarket and you may want to ask.
On the same site the heater core MSRP is $150, minus $43.92 in savings, for a total of $106.08 plus shipping. Checked another site and same price. This has to be an aftermarket part, since Mopar/OE heater cores used to be about the same price as evaporators, and most likely similar to the one the dealer would install. And it isn't going to take the mechanic any full hour, at $90-$100/hour, to install the heater core in the open box.
The older our ZJ's get the more parts our outsourced by Chrysler/Jeep. Heck a few years ago the dealer installed an aftermarket/rebuilt PCM from Miami in my 96 4.0! Checked with the guy I know who runs the parts counter at the local dealer last year and he said every PCM they now sell is rebuilt.
The big difference is Chrysler stands behind their warranty on parts they sell. And that brings up another point where the dealer is going to warranty the work they do on the AC system but not sure if they would on the heater core install. But you would think they would if they purchased the part while doing the labor.
Believe it's worth a shot on approaching the dealer on them buying/installing the heater core for $200. And if it delayed getting your ZJ back a day or too later if necessary for ordering the part in it would be worth it. Good luck!