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Why do Car repair centers rip you off?

I had a repair center quote me $800 worth of repair to fix my car. But a friend of mine is a mechanic and he thought I just need one part. I went and bought a $12 part and had him put it in for me and now my car works fine.
My friend thought it was a thermostat that need to be replaced. I then went to do a diagnostic at Goodyear to make sure that’s what was wrong with it, and thats where they quoted me for extra crap. My friend put the thermostat in the next day and it is no longer overheating.

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9 Responses to “Why do Car repair centers rip you off?”

  1. Ash said :

    Becaus ethtas what u pay them to do.

  2. Uncle Red said :

    I am insulted.
    I have been a business man for 17 years in the repair business I have customers that are good friends and I also have those like you that think I should repair cars for free.
    I do agree that 12 vs. 800 is a bit extreme and yes there are those unscrupulous shops that will rip you off.


    you should learn to do the work on your car and bust a couple of knuckles pay for your employees insurance, their wages, the shop they work in, the insurance for the business while sending kids to college than have a customer come in a say hey you ripped me off by charging me to install the part….

    GEEZ, how ignorant!

  3. elaynekicksass said :

    That’s a good question. I would guess it’s because they’re a55holes. I had a quote for brakes go from $180 to $350 overnight. I learned how to do it myself and it cost me less than $50.

    It’s good you have a friend to help you out. Most mechanics don’t know what they’re doing anyway.
    I paid to have so many things misdiagnosed by so many different mechanics, it’s enough to make you want to stop driving altogether.

    — also I think “Uncle Red” needs to calm the heck down.
    You must have hit a nerve. He’s probably guilty of overcharging otherwise he wouldn’t get so bent out of shape over your question.

  4. Parag D said :

    this is not a rip off , its going around how to do the work done , whenever u go to a repair centre ask following questions :

    1) how much will the part ost ?
    2) loook for options on the parts , variety of parts are available for varety fo price ranges.
    3) how much do they charge for the labor /hr ?
    4) and how much time it will take ?
    5) go to 2 different places to verify the details ?
    6) and then get the job done at the repuated repair centres

    your friend is he a certified mechanic , most mechanics at the repair centres are , if not find the one that has

    always ask questions , i am sure they wouldnt like it , but its your money not theirs , after going through all these , the peson trying to rip you off will think twice because akthough you dont have the knowldge to fix the part , you know how to get the part fixed ..

    good luck hope this helps

  5. Rich Z said :

    Car repair, particularly if the customer seems to have no idea what their problem is, are an easy scam to overestimate on. A repair place could fix the problem and add in a bunch of other pricey things that were unnecessary and it would look like they fixed the problem as estimated.

    Don’t go to a place you don’t trust (maybe ask your friend which places he thinks are honest). Also make sure that every time someone asks about a car repair that you tell them about your experience with the place that trued to scam you. The word will get around and people will learn to tell the crooks from the honest ones.

  6. hsueh010 said :

    Car repair centers must pay for overhead that you and your friend don’t have to.

    There are lots of EPA laws, insurance requirements (both on the hazards that are posed in the shop, as well as for customer vehicles), and various garage equipment, disposal fees that a service center must have to do the job right.

    What did the $800 quote cover? Did it cover diagnostic time? Did you pay for the diagnostic time, or did you use the free diagnostic time and have your mechanic friend replace the part that the repair center used to find the problem?

    And why did you take it to the mechanic to get the $800 quote when you already had a mechanic friend who could do it for you for $12?

  7. smf_hi said :

    Before you get your car worked on by ANYBODY for anything, get at least three quotes from different mechanics. Places like Goodyear, Firestone, Midas, etc. are infamous for doing un needed work and charging an inflated price. As an personal example, my wife sold her Geo Metro with 24k miles on it to one of our neighbors. Before he bought it he took it to Firestone to have it inspected, they listed about $1800.00 worth of work they recommended be performed. They wanted to charge $85.00 just to replace three spark plugs, $185.00 for new cap, rotors and spark plug wires!! It’s was kind of funny because not only did I replace all those parts 6 months earlier, but the one thing that was wrong was the muffler which they didn’t even notice. We had a good laugh over it and then took it to a mechanic that I used. He charged $35.00 for the inspection, checked the compression and found nothing wrong with it other than the muffler, which he charged $60.00 to replace. Our neighbor now has close to 80k miles on it with no problems at all.

  8. nikipoo said :

    If the place you got the part sold it fore the price these shop gets it would be about 8 bucks if they charged list price it would have been about 20-24 bucks than add the labor rate to that an u end up at 800+ bucks Auto dealers are 75-80 an hour if the manual says 2 hr u are charged 2 hours but if it only takes a hour u still pay 2 hr labor
    I have quoted a price of 900 to fix a squeak under the hood It turned out to be a lose belt rather than the ac unit the finale bill 10.00 an a happy costumer if it was a dealer or a large chain shop it would have been at least the min labor of 1 hour 50-75 just to tighten a belt is that a rip off no its your fault for not asking the right questions in the first place ask your friend where would he take his car to get fixed if had to

  9. mellowg7 said :

    Ok that makes a lot more sense . You better take your friend out to lunch now ., saving $700 ! lol


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