After reading these experiences, I felt compelled to add my own insights. I've been a ASE certified mechanic for most of my adult life, from Arizona to Alaska to Spain. I also spent a few months working at a Midas. While there are some excellent techs employed at Midas there are also a lot of kids, 19 to 23 or so, who make 11-15 dollars an hour. We had one who test drove a customer's Porsche and spun it sideways into a snow bank. The shop paid to fix it, but the car was uncrashed when brought in.
Midas specializes in undercar, brakes and suspension, because it is more lucrative than engine or transmission diagnostics. Brake work in shops is viewed as gravy--quick, easy money. Therefore, Midas can hire guys without a lot of experience and still make profits. A chain has a monthly goal ($) and towards the end of the month the pressure to meet that goal extends from corporate office to franchise owner to foreman to mechanic. Guys are told they must increase the amount they're billing each month or face a pay cut. Calipers are the easiest thing to add to a ticket, and rarely need replacing.
Another scam is the GM brake hardware kits--a set of rubber dust boots and o-rings for the brake caliper bolts. Midas pays around 2.00 for these and lists them at 24.99. Those lifetime brake pads? Be ready to have your rotors resurfaced every time you go in for your free replacements--that's about 80$ a visit, plus after 3-4 visits your rotors will be too thin and have to be replaced. Don't want to do that? You'll get your brake pads in a box.
While there are some fine techs at Midas, the business model is flawed, focusing on the ledger line. It is not a business run by competent automotive professionals, but by corporate penny pinchers. Find a honest, independent and competent shop and stick with them through thick and thin. Every shop and mechanic makes mistakes, but what I saw in Midas leads me to question their honesty and motives and that is not a dynamic that should exist with any repair shop.
SANTA ROSA, CALIFORNIA -- Midas has an ad that plays on the radio station I listen to every morning, stating they offer a free check engine light diagnostic test. The ad states "if your check engine light comes on, don't wait...take it to Midas for a free check engine light diagnostic..."
So one day my car's engine light comes on and of course I call up Midas to set up an appointment. I specifically say I am interested in making an appointment for the free engine light diagnostic test. The guy answering the phone puts me on hold and then another guy gets on the phone to set up the appointment date and time.
I get to Midas on our pre-arranged scheduled time and start filling out the paperwork. The guy behind the counter states the diagnostic test costs $105. I told him "No, I wanted the free engine light diagnostic test that you advertise on the radio". Stated, "We don't have such an advertisement. You must be mistaken with another company. Midas doesn't advertise anything like that."
I argue with him again that it WAS a Midas advertisement and that this was the reason I called Midas up first...because THEY were the ones that advertise on my radio station. He then stated I was welcome to take my car and go find another place to have the engine diagnostic done, but that I wouldn't find anywhere else that would do it for free so I might as well just have it done there.
I decided to go ahead and have the diagnostic test done there, because I knew he was right. I would have to pay for the test anywhere else I went, and the fact that I had my ride waiting for me outside while I left my car, I felt pressured into agreeing to the $105 fee.
Once I was back home however, I looked up the Midas online customer service email and explained the situation. I asked that I be reimbursed for the $105 fee when the ad clearly stated it was free. I waited a week and got no response. I emailed again, and still no response. It has been months since this ordeal happened. Funny thing is Midas is STILL advertising the same thing on the radio station. I hear it almost daily! I wish I had a way to record the advertisement and even attempted to get in touch with the radio station, but just couldn't find anyone who could help me out.
KEARNEY, NEBRASKA -- On 4/3/13 I stopped in the Midas located at 102 W 25th St, Kearney, NE 68847 to have my tires rotated and balanced while driving cross country from Chicago, IL to Los Angeles, CA. The store was getting ready to close. The manager went out to my car to get the miles off the car, and when removing the key from my ignition, he locked it up. He later went out to move the car into the service bay, when we learned he wasn't able to start the car. We called a locksmith, as there was no parts in town to replace it.
The locksmith came out and took a look at it, and informed me IN FRONT OF THE MANAGER that he had snatched the key out WITH FORCE while the car wasn't fully in the OFF position, resulting in bending the pins in the ignition. I was stuck with a $65.00 bill for the locksmith and told I would need to replace the ignition, as the Midas employee damaged it. The employee who damaged the ignition admitted fault as well, and said he was very sorry. He told me to come back the next day and they would do my rotation on my tires for FREE.
On 4/4/13 I returned as I had stayed the night at a local hotel. I was charged for the service as well $60.80. On 4/24/13 I called Lexus as requested to do by ** to get the price of the repair, and was told he would pay me to have the car fixed, as well as the $60.80 I paid of the service and the $35.00 I paid for the hotel.
When he found out the bill for the car repair was $737.80 he refused to pay it, and told me the age and miles on the car was the reason my ignition broke, and proceeded to tell me I'm in Los Angeles now and he is in Nebraska, and there wasn't anything I could do about it. I have threatened to contact my attorney and sue Midas and he refuses to pay me for the damages.
I have a written statement from the locksmith even stating the Midas employee was the one that damaged my car, and if Midas still refuses to make payment to me for this damage, I do have full right and intent to sue Midas to the fullest of the law. I will seek damages for car, hotel, repair bill at Midas, attorney fees, court cost and interest if allowed by the court. This $900.00 problem will turn into a $5000 or more problem.
LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY -- I went to get a brake job done. Told $150 on phone. Got there and of course there's more problems, new total is $320 (have to replace rotors, can't machine them down, bull crap, bull crap, bull crap). I agree. 45 minutes later I have to get a new caliper (they broke it while changing brakes). Now it's $530 dollars (180 bucks for a new caliper).
I google caliper and see its only $70. I ask if this is too expensive, am told no. I tell them I do not even have the money in my bank. I have to pay it or it can't be fixed and I can't leave. I forward money to bank account. 3.5 hours later and $450 more than I was expecting to pay, I leave.
4 days later, the caliper they installed wrong leaked all my brake fluid out. I almost wrecked. I can't imagine what could have happened to me or my daughters, or if my girlfriend had been driving (not that women aren't good drivers but she would not have known how to handle a car with no brakes).
So after making me wait 3 hours longer than I should have, charged me over 400 bucks more than I should have, they put my personal life and property in danger and every single person on the road that I was around that day after I left work. The other customers while I was there all had something else wrong with their car they 'had to get fixed' (lady getting an oil change needed an alignment, lady getting oil change needed timing belt replaced, etc, anything they can say to charge more).
After I told the guy I didn't have enough money initially to pay for it and had to borrow money just to pay them, I tried to use a coupon I printed off their website and was told they couldn't take it. One of the worst experiences of my life. After I had caliper replaced by another mechanic (for 60 bucks), I told them I wanted my money back on my old caliper. They said they are in the retail business, not the wholesale business and that's why I was overcharged!
So their mentality is exactly this: 'CHARGE AS MUCH AS YOU CAN TO EVERY CUSTOMER REGARDLESS OF CIRCUMSTANCE. That's how they make money'. No customer service, no customer care, their guarantee is a lie and a farce... AVOID AT ALL COSTS! Drive these creeps out of business.
MESA, ARIZONA -- My wife got a coupon for free oil change from Midas. We live in Mesa so she went to Michael Jasko (Midas) on 2964 East Main Street, 85213. She called saying we needed new tires (we didn't, but I hadn't looked at them in a while, so talked to owner). Owner (Michael Jasko) assured me they were dangerous (a lie). I assumed tires would be about $400 for 4 new tires, installed as I'd seen various advertisements. He said $500, because they were special tires. I reluctantly agreed but only after getting him to confirm verbally there would be no other charges.
He proceeded to upsell my wife on everything after we hung up. Nitro fill (an utter waste), road warranty (another waste, covered by insurance already), and he tacked on $193 in labor. Again, he confirmed there were absolutely no other charges on the phone when we spoke. So when I spoke to my wife I told her go ahead and do what he is suggesting... He of course suggested everything possible to upsell an additional $300 on top of the already fraudulent order of new tires on a FREE oil change coupon.
I attempted to work things out, assuming that it was a mistake on my wife's part. He didn't tell her anything about additional charges until the work was done and he brought a final bill. What could be done? He can put a lien on the vehicle. We just paid and left as my infant was already waiting a few hours and I knew he could make this horrible.
Bottom line: He lied directly to me, refused to return my calls and emails (until I threatened BBB complaint). I also tried to work out a trade deal with him for the $300, because I thought maybe my wife had simply not heard him say there would be extra charges. He dodged me for 2 months of phone calls and emails, never returning my calls and telling me he was busy when I called. I was polite until my last email to him when I explained what I would do if he didn't refund the $300 he ripped us off for.
I would suggest you go to a mechanic you can trust. One that I've found and trust is: College Automotive (480) 655-7699.They repaired my neon and helped me to decide if I needed to fix things or wait until it's worse. I totally felt like they were on my side and trying to help me get the best deal, while still being safe. If you want honest service, stay away from MIDAS!
NEW LONDON, CONNECTICUT -- Midas will screw you over with no remorse. With the price of life in this harsh and unforgiving economy, this particular business place is taking advantage of its most loyal customers. Anyway this is my story, I brought my truck to Midas in New London to check a noise from the front wheels, it turned out it was a broken spring, they charged me over $900. I took the car to work and the noise was back, on my way back from work everything started to fall apart, screws and nuts were being dropped on the road and smoke started coming out of my passenger side wheel, my hubcap melted and fell off, the stirring wheel kept locking on me and I could barely brake.
Somehow in the grace of God I managed to make it to town between putting the gear on neutral going downhill and releasing the gas to slow down. I drove the truck straight to the Midas shop and the next day dropped by to state my case. They decided that they would not fix my truck and that I would have to pay another $900. After two days of going back and forth with these people I finally got a hold of their general manager Carlos ** and he decided that even though the problems seem related they were not the same.
He finally concluded that he would do the work with a discounted labor but I would still have to pay for the parts. I called AutoZone, I went online and also called Ford Parts and their prices were less than half the prices Midas is asking me for the new parts. The general public should be informed not to go to Midas because they will scam you and screw you over with no shame! My friend's neighbor, one of Midas' previous technician admitted that they always double their parts prices!
FRANKFORT, KENTUCKY -- This is one way of warning people about a company (MIDAS). I had to have an alternator replace on my car today and I went to Midas. They had to get one from Advance auto parts and they told me it would be $413.26. Well I told them to go ahead. I had to have a car. My oldest granddaughter came and picked me up. She threw a fit. She said alternators were not that high and she called Advance to see how much they charged Midas for the part.
Get this, Midas only paid 119.95 for the part. When I went to pay the bill the labor was only $39.98 the part cost was $329.95 supply charge (whatever that was) was $22.20 tax was $21.13. I told the tech guy that I was letting anyone that would listen about their business. If you can help it I wouldn't go to Midas unless you got money to give away.
ENFIELD, CONNECTICUT -- *************
Note to Approver: Also found this review in http://www.yelp.com/biz/midas-enfield
I got my Oil Change on 5/19/2010 at MIDAS, the Enfield location. Then on 5/20 morning when I'm driving to work, the engine stops working the car stops on the Highway I91-N. I tow the car and take it to Firestone. They say that there is not Oil Filter, oil leaked and locked the motor and now the motor needs to be replaced.
I spoke to the owner of the store - Jack **. He refused to take any responsibility and started swearing. I have the bill which clearly states that the Oil Filter was replaced. I didn't even drive the car for over 40 miles since the oil change and my motor died.
RANDOLPH, NEW JERSEY -- Dropped off my vehicle at the Midas in Randolph, NJ to have it aligned. Went back to pick it up and said that additional work needed to be done including replacement of the wheel bearing to the tune of $1,200. Midas person even showed me where the problem was. He said that the car was not safe to drive until the work was done. Was very skeptical. Took the car home and noticed the car was shakier than before.
Had another mechanic check it and said that the wheel axle nut was retracted and loosened making the wheel unstable and unsafe to drive. Can't believe that Midas would go to extra lengths of tampering with my car just to make $$$. These people cannot be trusted.
LODI, CALIFORNIA -- I brought my car into Midas in Lodi. It was not starting. Took them two days to fix my car, all along they're telling me I need a tune up for $150. I say "no just get it started. I'm two weeks from having my baby, only fix what's broken." I send bf to get car, he pays $429. He leaves on the way home, car starts to misfire and has no power (this is a new problem). He goes back, tells Ken what's going on. Ken tells him we need a tune up.
Bf calls me, I call Ken. I ask him "what's up, our car starts but now doesn't run." He tells me I need a tune up. I tell him no and ask him what he did. He tells me he can't talk to me, won't give me corp. number and hangs up on me. Ken then tells my bf I don't want to get sued, maybe they put the plug wires on backwards. So he switches them, car runs OK, bf leaves. That night bf looks under the hood sees an ark at plug wires. He then takes it to another shop, pay $200 to find out the wires have been cut and they didn't put any new part on our car. So we were charged for nothing and later we also found the part was only $80.