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Old 04-19-2007, 12:03 AM   #1
i_c_the_light
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Default This is why the dealership can go suck it!

My RX/II is in need of headgaskets. I don't think I'm on good terms with my mech for a while, but I'll give him a month or 3 to cool down, but that's a different story for later. Anyways, I head down to the dealer and get a quote. The gaskets aren't too bad price wise, it was the labour that had me all . Their top techie reckoned about 12 hours of labour to do the whole job at about $97 an hour...I couldn't believe it. I worked it out at around the $1200 mark for labour+ parts and that's twice as much as I paid for the whole ****ing car!
Forget the price, but seriously does it take about 12 hours to replace headgaskets for an EA82T? I was guessing anywhere between 5-8 hours tops and I got bowled over when I was told 12!
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Old 04-19-2007, 12:05 AM   #2
dickpainter
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get another quote?
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Old 04-19-2007, 12:08 AM   #3
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if you can find a shop manual, or ask to see it, it quotes the amount of time for a job (usually)
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Old 04-19-2007, 12:36 AM   #4
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do it yourself
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Old 04-19-2007, 03:13 AM   #5
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welcome to reality and book time. Techs are paid by the labor time guide and 12 hours does not sound unreasonable. Neither does $97 an hour as the subaru shop I work at is $95 an hour.

5-8 hours? man you need to really open your eyes and look at whats involved.

all in all your pretty much over reacting.
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Old 04-19-2007, 05:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mavrik View Post
welcome to reality and book time. Techs are paid by the labor time guide and 12 hours does not sound unreasonable. Neither does $97 an hour as the subaru shop I work at is $95 an hour.

5-8 hours? man you need to really open your eyes and look at whats involved.

all in all your pretty much over reacting.
Ummm my mech charges $45 an hour and he doesn't dick around most of the time and does a good job too. You're probably thinking why I'm not getting him to do it instead. There's a bit of a story behind why I haven't, and it's not something I'm going to get into detail with.
So why the hell does a dealership charge twice as much as anywhere else? Because those salesfolk in the parts dept. are wearing those clean and nice looking shirts.
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Old 04-19-2007, 08:16 AM   #7
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Why do they charge twice as much? I dont know where to begin, maybe its the specialized traing the techs recieve, the classes they need to go to at SOA to be certified to even touch your car. Or possibly the special tools that that are required to repair your vehicle, that most local independents do not have. Or dont feel the need to have to buy. On a headgasket job particularly, if it isnt done right (line up timing belt incorrectly and your heads are toast)... I could go on, but most people think the dealer is a rip-off. Not knowing all the training the techs have, and experience. I have one tech that has 23 years subaru experience. Whats that worth? Dealers also warranty their work for 12 months, unlimited mileage.... My .02
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Old 04-19-2007, 08:35 AM   #8
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The book time is also a waste. There are so many Books and crap, who do you use?

If you don't like their price, you can go elsewhere for a quote. Also keep in mind alot of your private shops don't specialize and work on 1 car. They work on all of them and you do run a risk for a bad repair where the dealers have technicians that work only on those cars.


The best way I can put it is this, you need a roof put on your house and the roofer comes and gives you an estimate of $4500. Do you question where he got his estimate from? No you go and get other estimates and remember, sometimes you get what you pay for. I have seen some *****ty hack jobs on Subarus from private shops, but the customer spent less.

Last edited by blackfang; 04-19-2007 at 08:43 AM.
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Old 04-19-2007, 05:43 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salisburyv View Post
Why do they charge twice as much? I dont know where to begin, maybe its the specialized traing the techs recieve, the classes they need to go to at SOA to be certified to even touch your car. Or possibly the special tools that that are required to repair your vehicle, that most local independents do not have. Or dont feel the need to have to buy. On a headgasket job particularly, if it isnt done right (line up timing belt incorrectly and your heads are toast)... I could go on, but most people think the dealer is a rip-off. Not knowing all the training the techs have, and experience. I have one tech that has 23 years subaru experience. Whats that worth? Dealers also warranty their work for 12 months, unlimited mileage.... My .02
I couldn't have said it better myself.
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Old 04-19-2007, 06:37 PM   #10
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Hack job smack job..... my car was recently in to the dealer for a new warranty shortblock. They dismissed a broken ring landing 3 times untill I requested a compression and leakdown test that revealed the problem was where i stated. It took a little more than 5 weeks, yes really. When I got it back, my hood was not on straight, had missing bolts in the exhaust, my horn didn't work anymore, they broke the welds on my up pipe heat shield (causing it to be loose and make a hell of a noise) and reinstalled it that way, didn't bleed the cooling system correctly causing the coolant to be low, overtightened and stripped one of the intake mainfold bolts causing a boost leek (still dealing with) .... and the list goes on. The dealer we have in Vegas straight up sucks, and the customer service is just as bad. If it wasn't for the fact that the car was under warranty, I would have done it myself.
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Old 04-19-2007, 06:54 PM   #11
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Factory CD player takes a dump, and I had to show the tech how to take my dash apart...AFTER he gouged the crap out of the center console What's this tell me? That the insane hourly rate they charge for "specialized" training is great and all...if they actually bother to remember it maybe

They charge more because they can and people will pay. It's as simple as that.
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Old 04-19-2007, 06:55 PM   #12
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Guess they need good techs. The three I have have over 50 years of experience combined. They are very meticulous on their work.
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Old 04-19-2007, 06:58 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Daishi00 View Post
Factory CD player takes a dump, and I had to show the tech how to take my dash apart...AFTER he gouged the crap out of the center console What's this tell me? That the insane hourly rate they charge for "specialized" training is great and all...if they actually bother to remember it maybe

They charge more because they can and people will pay. It's as simple as that.
It goes both ways. I have seen dumb@ss techs working for private shops just as much as a dumb@ss dealership tech. However, in general the dealer will have better techs, the right tools and experience. I have worked for 3 dealers and 3 private repair shops. The dealers always had the better. I have been lucky since working for Subaru that I have 3 damn good techs.
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Old 04-19-2007, 08:04 PM   #14
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^^^That is why I go to the same shop that's been in business for over 25 years with the same two guys working there

You are right though...many of the private shops have morons just like the dealers, but I have yet to have an experience with a dealership repair that has been positive. Maybe I'm just unlucky in that regard.
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:40 AM   #15
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lol correct term is stealership.....but uhhh i agree with all of the training the dealership has
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Old 04-20-2007, 01:18 AM   #16
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Yes, the service dept. are well trained. They've got 2 guys there, one who's ALMOST completed all his training and the main techie who really knows his stuff. He's fully certified for Nissan, Subaru, VW and Peugot just off the top of my head.
However, that doesn't justify charging so much on the hourly rate.
I've been told that the local wrecker does repairs and won't financially cripple me like the dealer will. So I'll investigate over the weekend. However I've also been told he's got his hands full right now with an RS Legacy because one of his staff ordered NA gaskets instead of turbo ones for it and the engine grenaded itself. That had me suprised because the wrecker has been dealing with Subies for longer than the dealership has existed.
What I might do is order the gaskets from the dealer and get the wrecker to do the job instead.
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:12 AM   #17
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I'd never let some backyard wrecker do a repair on my car. I'll stick with what I know which is my friends who work at the largest subaru dealership in alaska.

IMO going somewhere else then Subaru with my Subaru is like going to the dentist with a stomach ache. I've never had a bad experience with dealerships including the ones I went to before I started working at them. At least here in alaska, you get what you pay for and most places do charge the same if not more then we do. Plus we have all the training you can't get anywhere else.

Go ahead and have a wrecker try and fix your car when most of their experience is taking it apart. I know who they will be calling for parts and specs to do your car... Subaru. I have other shops calling me daily to talk to my techs. I should send them a bill.
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:28 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i_c_the_light View Post
Yes, the service dept. are well trained. They've got 2 guys there, one who's ALMOST completed all his training and the main techie who really knows his stuff. He's fully certified for Nissan, Subaru, VW and Peugot just off the top of my head.
However, that doesn't justify charging so much on the hourly rate.
Of course it is. You can't do it and they can. They have the schooling, experience and tools to do the job. Do you go to the doctor and ask him why he charges more than another doctor?

Go to the local shop and see what you get. it is worth a try, then again it is also a chance you take. I get other shops coming in and calling to speak with my techs because they can't fix their customers car. They take it apart and then go crap, now what do we do?
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:29 AM   #19
i_c_the_light
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I'd never let some backyard wrecker do a repair on my car. I'll stick with what I know which is my friends who work at the largest subaru dealership in alaska.

IMO going somewhere else then Subaru with my Subaru is like going to the dentist with a stomach ache. I've never had a bad experience with dealerships including the ones I went to before I started working at them. At least here in alaska, you get what you pay for and most places do charge the same if not more then we do. Plus we have all the training you can't get anywhere else.

Go ahead and have a wrecker try and fix your car when most of their experience is taking it apart. I know who they will be calling for parts and specs to do your car... Subaru. I have other shops calling me daily to talk to my techs. I should send them a bill.
I wouldn't call this guy a backyard wrecker. He also runs a scrap metal business and a Subaru car sales yard all under the one roof. Not only that, he's the ONLY Subaru specialist wrecker in town.
Yes he will be calling Subaru for any new parts like gaskets, he actually does and doesn't order new parts from anywhere else unless requested otherwise.
It's just that ONE **** up they did with the wrong gaskets on that RS that is giving me a bit of doubt. But then again, they are only human like the rest of us.

Bottom line: Dealerships are only good for ummmm....Subaru jackets?
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Old 04-20-2007, 07:40 AM   #20
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I wouldn't call this guy a backyard wrecker. He also runs a scrap metal business and a Subaru car sales yard all under the one roof. Not only that, he's the ONLY Subaru specialist wrecker in town.
Yes he will be calling Subaru for any new parts like gaskets, he actually does and doesn't order new parts from anywhere else unless requested otherwise.
It's just that ONE **** up they did with the wrong gaskets on that RS that is giving me a bit of doubt. But then again, they are only human like the rest of us.

Bottom line: Dealerships are only good for ummmm....Subaru jackets?
This guy you praise, messed up your car and you say the dealership is no good?

Hope you don't have to regret those words. I know in our area, the private shops are always referring cars to us. Hope it works out.
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Old 04-20-2007, 11:14 AM   #21
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Our shop charges almost as much as the dealerships in this area, we also carry as much insurance, my techs go to schools, we have the latest tools and info. our shop is clean, and for the most part our work is better than the dealerships in our area. I get people telling me all the time "you must be rich for what you get an hour" let me tell you I wish I could keep 20% of what goes through my hands. If you want it cheap you are going to get sub std. quality work, and prob. cost alot more in the long run, the std. answer in this area from the cheap shops is "well you needed that part anyway"
We have had alot of customers bring there vehicles to us after spending thousands of dollars, only to find that a ground wire had broken or been left off, and because of the training my guys have had, are able to find the problem in mins. crap alot of shops don't even own or know how to use a lab scope, this stuff costs big dollars to buy and learn how to use.
A dealer is going to be more per hour just because of the cost of doing business, they have to stock parts, buy the specal tools, and train the people (parts people too) and they have to pay a decent wage to these employees. I don't have to have a parts guy, or some one to answer the phone (thats me, I get whats left over) Give me a f***** break! How much do you make an hour? do you think your worth that much? look deep down inside, I think you will see the problem here.
Sorry about the rant, have a great day all.
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:01 PM   #22
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^^^ what he said. Most people dont realize the dealer only keeps between 4-5 % of what is charged on the labor side. Really! The cost of doing business is high, and they dont make much sellin cars either. The 2 most important people in a dealership 1) the guy who evaluates and puts a $ figure on your trade. 2) service writer. any other question?


Training....tools... overhead....warranty.... most smaller independents cant hang, the bigger ones do a decent job. But as has been said... I get at least 5-10 calls a week, from locals asking if we can fix their mistakes, Suby is its own animal.
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Old 04-20-2007, 12:47 PM   #23
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Just find one decent honest mechanic, even if hes 40 minutes away, and stick with him for life
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Old 04-20-2007, 02:58 PM   #24
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I had one today who went to Firestone 3 times and spent some money on plugs, wires, etc and the 4th visit they sent her to us and we replaced the af sensor and there was an update for the ecu and car is fixed.
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Old 04-20-2007, 03:26 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salisburyv View Post
Why do they charge twice as much? I dont know where to begin, maybe its the specialized traing the techs recieve, the classes they need to go to at SOA to be certified to even touch your car. Or possibly the special tools that that are required to repair your vehicle, that most local independents do not have. Or dont feel the need to have to buy. On a headgasket job particularly, if it isnt done right (line up timing belt incorrectly and your heads are toast)... I could go on, but most people think the dealer is a rip-off. Not knowing all the training the techs have, and experience. I have one tech that has 23 years subaru experience. Whats that worth? Dealers also warranty their work for 12 months, unlimited mileage.... My .02

Good point... but ahh I know a few Subaru Techs and they are toolbags...
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