How Much Should An Engine Tune Up Cost

car engine tune up costIs $644 plus tax too much for a Tune-Up and a rebuilt Distributor on a 1995 Cadillac Sedan DeVille? I know you are busy, but I was just wondering if you could tell me a yes or no. Thanks for your time. Love your site.

Hi there,

Thanks for the kind words. A rebuilt distributor should cost you about $150 for the part, about $100 to install it and then you need to find out what a “tune up” really means to these people. Most of the time when shops use the phrase “tune up” it means replacing spark plugs and an air filter.

For vehicles before 2000

A full blown tune up on this vehicle should really include

1. Distributor cap, and ignition rotor $45
2. Air and fuel filters $75
3. Spark plugs and since you are replacing the distributor I would replace the spark plug wires as well $175

So, I would estimate the work above to be around $545 plus taxes…say $600. IF they are going to perform all the work listed above, then I would say their price is pretty much in line with what my estimate would be.

Maybe you can supply your own parts, and only pay them for labor which should be about $200-$250 ish.

For vehicles after 2000

To be honest there is not really much to a “tune up” anymore.  Most vehicles after year 2000 don’t even have spark plug wires, or a distributor with an ignition rotor. So what is really left on newer vehicles to replace?

1. Spark plugs – and now, most spark plugs last close to 100,000 miles with no problems

2. A fuel filter and air filter

3. ummm, that’s about all. Cost….really depends on the vehicle, but about $350 +- on average

What I do recommend you do about every 25,000 miles or so is clean the throttle body.  My short video below shows you what it is and why you should do it.

Now, before you say anything.  There are TONS of sensors and electronics on vehicles of today, but we don’t replace them until there is a problem. Cars are a heck of a lot more complex, and much harder to work on…heck, can you even SEE your spark plugs…probably not. So just to change them costs 3 times as much as 15 years ago, but they last forever!


Please share this with your friends,

Austin Davis

2 Comments on "How Much Should An Engine Tune Up Cost"

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  1. Morgan says:

    damn…i got told my 93 olds would cost about 304 without tax! and i dont have that kind of money >< im going to what little i can ti fix my issues, but if it persists ill do what i can and take it in

  2. Steve says:

    $644? Holy Cow, what have we come too.
    First the Auto Industry makes it impossible to do your own tune up.
    And now we get $650 tune ups.
    What a rip off!

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