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Any car guys got an explanation


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#1 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 10:38 AM

other than the obvious?

Found a shop for my Volvo that I loved. Then it closed. Took it to a place that supposedly gave same level of service and even had some of the same guys working there.

I took it in for two issues. They call me after looking at it, tell me what they think about those two things and shoot me prices. They sounded a little high on one of the two, but not too out of line from what I expected.

Then, they point out something more minor and routine, a coolant leak at water pump. Those cars go through water pumps. The guy we bought it from told us that. Two mechanics have told us that. However, they also told us the part is cheap - like $40 max cheap - and it's easy to replace on that car. My husband who doesn't like to work on cars or have an aptitude for it has done it twice. In an hour or less.

They tell me it will be $375 for them to do it. $125 part, $95/hr labor.

I know I'm a girl and not a math major, but...

I called Auto Zone and asked what the part cost and, if I wanted to spend more, what's the most expensive one. It was like $30.99 right now. Also Googled other stores. $40 is the most I could walk in a store and buy one for today.

When he shot me the price for replacing the water pump, I told him that was making me question all his prices. He claimed it was a better part (though didn't give me a specific brand or quality difference; those cheap ones have at least limited lifetime guarantees), and yammered about why their labor rate is what it is and a need to make money. I told him then to not do anything to the car, I'd call him back. I thought about it for a minute and made the call to Auto Zone, then called him back and said I'd just pick up my car.

I'm out $45 for them to not work on my car, and the whole having to have a ride to drop it off and being without my car while worked on thing is such a pain in my arse.

Is there some valid explanation for the water pump price and work numbers he shot me, or should I be telling other people to avoid that place?

Edited by kelley, 06 January 2016 - 10:41 AM.


#2 Quasar

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 11:09 AM

I fired Carmerica in Sellerburg for those same unethical business practices. That "better part" garbage is a bunch of bs... 


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#3 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 11:13 AM

That's the piece that was kind of easy to check up on, though maybe they have some different souce or better stuff than Auto Zone. And Advanced. And O'Rielly.

The labor time got me too. If these guys are mechanics that specialize in this make and have all the right tools handy, how the hell does it take two hours or more to swap out that part when it takes Todd about an hour? He spends 15 minutes at least of that just on cussing.

Edited by kelley, 06 January 2016 - 11:28 AM.

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#4 Russell Brooksbank

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 12:46 PM

The labor time is probably coming from the book. Shops charge according to how long the book says it takes. So, if the book says it takes 2 hours and they get it done in 15 minutes then they will charge for 2 hours labor. I know, silly, but that's kind of how they figure prices for jobs. The part thing is outrageous and they are blowing smoke. Unless they are going to the dealer to get the part. Either way, the Advance, Autozone and O'Reilly parts are comparable.



#5 chas

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 12:47 PM

Call Keith Giuffre 812 282 6621, he has full time job and gets home around 3 to 3.30.

I have used him for many years  and you can trust him to be fair.


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#6 Woodslover

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 01:08 PM

All the local shops get their parts from Auto Zone, Napa, Oriellys or Bumper to Bumper.  They typically get the parts at a 10-20 percent discount, then charge the customer double.

 

  They make money on the part and the labor.  I worked in the parts supply chain for a lot of the local shops, and I wouldn't take my car to any of them.



#7 Russell Brooksbank

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 01:37 PM

I'm just wondering why you didn't call me.

#8 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 01:41 PM

I'm just wondering why you didn't call me.


Because I didn't think of you as a Volvo mechanic.

#9 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 02:15 PM

The labor time is probably coming from the book. Shops charge according to how long the book says it takes. So, if the book says it takes 2 hours and they get it done in 15 minutes then they will charge for 2 hours labor. I know, silly, but that's kind of how they figure prices for jobs. The part thing is outrageous and they are blowing smoke. Unless they are going to the dealer to get the part. Either way, the Advance, Autozone and O'Reilly parts are comparable.


If they are going to the dealer for the part, how much does that inflate the price and is it actually a different and/or superior part?

#10 Russell Brooksbank

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 02:27 PM

If they are going to the dealer for the part, how much does that inflate the price and is it actually a different and/or superior part?

Dealer parts are very inflated in price. I wouldn't say they were superior.

#11 grammy

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 03:27 PM

The price on the labor was inline with what tire discounters quoted on my daughters car for oil pan gasket . Of course we didn't have it done, ridiculous .

#12 littletommy

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 05:22 PM

Call Keith Giuffre 812 282 6621, he has full time job and gets home around 3 to 3.30.
I have used him for many years and you can trust him to be fair.


Haven't seen keith in years, but yes, he's a great guy and a great mechanic!

#13 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 06:35 PM

The price on the labor was inline with what tire discounters quoted on my daughters car for oil pan gasket . Of course we didn't have it done, ridiculous .


The amount per hour didn't really bug me, and I know some places are even higher. However, when I've went somewhere with high rates, they were always so good and fast, it wasn't a huge deal. They knew what was wrong, how to fix it and did it quickly. It didn't really cost a fortune because it didn't take them long, and a few extra bucks to get something right the first time is worth it, can even save money in the long run. It was the amount of time they were budgetting at that rate that got me.


I'll keep Mr. Giuffre in mind, guys. For now, there's this little libertarian Teamster guy who is gonna take a stab at it this weekend. He won't rip me off. He knows better. :-D

Edited by kelley, 06 January 2016 - 06:37 PM.


#14 Oldgoat

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 09:36 PM

Kelley, we live in a time when many car repairs are as simple as going online and googling the job.  1A Auto sells parts but has videos for most common repairs on each model.  If you have a laptop or tablet , you can set in on the car and follow it step for step. It really is quite easy with the videos and you can watch it before starting to see what tools you will need. Not sur4e what year or model of Volvo you have but here is an example:  


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#15 kelley

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 10:28 PM

Kelley, we live in a time when many car repairs are as simple as going online and googling the job. 1A Auto sells parts but has videos for most common repairs on each model. If you have a laptop or tablet , you can set in on the car and follow it step for step. It really is quite easy with the videos and you can watch it before starting to see what tools you will need. Not sur4e what year or model of Volvo you have but here is an example:

Good advice.

My husband does many more car and home repair tasks than he used to thanks to Google and YouTube. I, on the other hand, have pretty nails and an aversion to getting dirt under them.

I used the Google/YouTube method last year to relearn to drive a clutch.

Edited by kelley, 06 January 2016 - 10:32 PM.


#16 GOB

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Posted 07 January 2016 - 08:12 AM

I use the black nitrile gloves from Harbor fright and never get my hands and nails dirty!


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#17 Oldgoat

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Posted 07 January 2016 - 10:48 AM

Good advice.

My husband does many more car and home repair tasks than he used to thanks to Google and YouTube. I, on the other hand, have pretty nails and an aversion to getting dirt under them.

I used the Google/YouTube method last year to relearn to drive a clutch.

If by chance your model is like the one in the video, the price they gave you would be quite reasonable.  Many cars with overhead cam engines require removing the timing belt to change the water pump, in which case you would definitely want to replace the belt as well.  Water pump jobs with timing belt replacement can easily run $500 or more.  It makes the job a real PIA!


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#18 kelley

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Posted 07 January 2016 - 12:17 PM

That's not required for mine. '93 940 non-turbo.
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