Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Having associated with a lot of "alleged" crooks over the past 2 years, I have found that they can generally be lumped into 2 groups: 1) the kind that steal and you know they're stealing, and 2) the kind that steal and you don't realize it for a long time. I have decided that the second group is far worse primarily because the amount of scheming and deception is greater.

There is one group of "alleged" businessmen who, I always fear, are robbing me so well that I don't know it--mechanics.

About a week ago I heard a humming noise coming from the back of my car. It has 112,000 miles, so I figured some bearing must have gone out. I took it to the dealer. They kept the car over the weekend, did a "thorough" check, then told me what they found--both rear wheel bearings were bad ($95 x 2), both front spindles were bad ($425 x 2), and the alternator was bad ($250). They said the rear wheels would need 4 hours of labor, the front would need 4 hours of labor, and the alternator would need 2 hours of labor, all at $97/hour. A grand total of $2800 after tax.

I told the man that was too much for now and thanked him for his time. Fearing that they were up-selling me, I took my car to a mechanic/friend from church and told him what the dealer's shop said. He did his own inspection--yes, the rear wheel bearings were shot, but there was nothing wrong with the front spindles or the alternator. Instead of 4 hours for labor, the job could be done in 2.5. The final bill from my friend? $323, including parts and labor.

So, what category of crook does the dealer mechanic fall into?


karin said...

That is why Bryan does our car repair. Good thing you have someone you can trust for a "second" opinion.

Celeste said...

I bet you were relieved after getting the second opinion. I'm glad it worked out for you. Cambrea I blog-tagged you.