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I took my Mazda 3 s into the shop today to get it checked out. Last week the airbag light came on for about an hour and then went off after I turned the car off and back on. They called me to inform me that it was a sensor and they are waiting on the part to come in. They also told me that the plastic “skid plate” under the front of my car was cracked. They said that this had to be caused by hitting or running over something. This is funny to me due to fact my car is only a little over 2 months old and I did not hit or run over anything. They told me that it would be $265 for the replacement part. I really have no idea what “skid plate” they are talking about. Has anyone had this problem or know what the hell they are talking about? I’m going in on Wed to check this out, cuz I’ll be damned if I pay for this. Please let me know!!! Thanks
 

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Yes there are others with the problem. Mine is cracked with a chunk missing out of it. And there's at least a couple others with the same problem. There's a thread in Maintenance and Care, and my thread is in this forum somewhere under cracked splash plate. The plate just covers the engine bay on the underside of the car. Keeps crap from getting up there, and smooths out the underside (possibly to reduce drag, but I'm not sure).

Looks like Mazda used material that can't stand up to a real driving application (ie cold weather with snow on the ground). I'm not going to jump at replacing mine if this is how easy they break. I might even have to contact Mazda and find out if they are going to improve the part.

Oh, and the $265 (I'm assuming US $ since you are in the States) they quoted you is way too high. I was quoted $117 Canadian.

Tyler
 

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Buy it from the parts guy and install it yourself. Find out what piece is it first.... $265 for some plastic sounds outright silly.
 

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I'm going to look at in on Thursday! Maybe the price they quoted me was including installation!?!?! Not sure!
 

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It's held on with some screws I think. So if they are charging anything for installation then they are screwing you. I agree with VaBoom, do it yourself.
 

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my friend's P5 run over a tire on the freeway and the whole under body plate fell off. one time she take her car to dealer for service, dealer asked whyy it is missing and she said she knew nth about it. the mazda just replace it for her at no charge. same case with my other friend's lexus IS300. i thought i was covered by warranty? wouln'd it be a warranty issue that the under body guard cover that can't protect the underbody under some situation? i hope mine won't get loose.......... :wink:
 

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I think that would definitely fall under a "defect in materials or workmanship" covered by the warranty... and if they won't replace it, then I would see if I could get something out of a more durable material instead of just buying the same piece that will break again.
 

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It's not a skid plate if it's made out of plastic.. it's just to keep dirt and water from splashing onto the engine and to help a little with under-car airflow. If you want a skidplate, contact a specialty shop about building you one out of some 3/8" aluminum.
 

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That is exactly what I was going to say - after looking at it I don't think it would be too terribly expensive to have a 1/4" or 3/8" aluminum plate made to replace the plastic, as it seems like a relatively simple shape.
 

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Well, I was in for an oil change and mine was discovered cracked too. Only thing is, they are replacing it under warranty. Why wouldn't they replace all of these under warranty??
 

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Just take it off and leave it off. I will tell you that with my experience working in a shop those plastic covers on the underside of the body will not last long. Almost everytime, after a year or so, that one gets removed either the plastic surrounding the screws will break, or the plastic screw itself will break. After awhile the plastic will become brittle and will crack due to age and you will be unable to put it back on. If you have you oil change done by someone else it will get destroyed quickly (due to the frustration of having to remove it). I have ran my last two cars with all the under carriage protection removed (saving weight) and the only problem that I have had is a dirtier engine. Running without them is better if you're a shade tree since when you drop a tool/bolt/screw it will go to the ground instead of on the plastic cover where it may or may not be accessible. Just my .02.
 

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And if you remove it, make sure you remove all of it. Even the two peices on each side of the engine that are connected to the wheel well. If you don't they will flap around and rub the tires at high speed.......I just put mine back on because of that.
I will be removing it completely when I install my CAI.
Another benefit it has is it protects the drive belt!

---Herb---
 

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Well, I won't be taking it off. Sorry, but if it continues to break, the dealer will continue to replace under warranty. At least my dealer will.
 

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This crap happened to me too. The broken underbody shield was making noise when driving on the highway. I took it in and they want $256 parts and labor to fix it. I think that this is bullcrap... if they make a plastic shield so that it brakes when a rock or something hits it, why should it be my responsibility to pay to fix it. I'm calling MazdaUSA right now to see if they can get the dealer to cover it under warranty.

Just got done talking to them, and they won't cover it under warranty if it was broken from something hitting it while driving. I told them I didn't hit anything while driving and they said a rock could have flown up there and cracked it. I asked them where do they draw the line to consider something a material defect, but she said she hasn't had any other complaints on this issue... so my advice is to call MazdaUSA for each and any issue you want to see resolved, because if they don't get enough input on an issue, then it will just stay as it is.
 

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Road hazard damage is never covered under warranty. Even if that damage is made more likely by a poor design. For example I just curbed my wheel pretty bad this morning, if Mazda had fit tires a little bit wider they would have protected the wheel. Even though Mazda could have designed it better they shouldn't be expected to replace my wheel.

You said it was $256 parts & labor, how much was labor. You don't need someone to install the shield for you. It's the same shiled that is removed whenever you do an oil change.
 

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I made a skid plate for my friend who got a P5. Made in Aluminium 6061 T6 with a thickness of 0.105''. Took me 2 hours to take my measure and design it and about 3 hours to cut it, bend it and install it. Im a slow worker when I work manually.. being a mech. engineer... im more used to be infront a computer...
 

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Did someone say this shield needs to be removed for the CAI?
 
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