This message is for ** people who think automotive shops overcharge. Do people have any clue on how much overhead it takes to run an automotive shop, let alone any business. If you want a backyard mechanic to be working on your car, sure I am sure you could be getting it done cheaper somewhere else. A good automotive technician gets paid about 40k to 50k a year. If you as a company don't want to pay that then you're going to have a shop full of backyard mechanics and whole lot of shop claims.
The reason a lot of these technicians are getting paid this is a lot of your vehicles today are becoming more and more computer controlled than vehicles even 5 years ago. For instance, your top of the line Mercedes vehicles have computer controlled brake systems, some of your new Hybrid vehicles if you have not had any proper training on these brake systems you could potentially hurt somebody or even kill somebody by not properly shutting down the ABS system (the caliper piston literally shoots out of the caliper at a fairly decent speed). Plus, newer vehicles have a computer for just about everything on your vehicle today.
The old saying is that newer vehicles have more computers on them than the Apollo 13 did. Also, take into consideration how much liability insurance is for and automotive shop, lease payments, equipment maintenance, equipment replacement, etc.
Those 2 post hoists you see in the shops run about $5000-$8000 roughly to purchase and install, new alignment racks are about $50,000 for the rack and the equipment and software, plus you have to consider the diagnostic equipment you have to purchase to be able to diagnose and repair newer vehicles (costs are anywhere from $5000-$30000 depending on the vehicle being serviced), the repair software to use with the diagnostic equipment. I could keep going, but I think you get the picture. So next time you want to complain about how much it costs for something, keep in mind how much it is to run from the backside of things.
Businesses are here to make money, it's the nature of things. Do you go into Applebee's or a Wolfgang Puck restaurant and complain about the price, sure you could go to a grocery store and your steak in the meat department and save money, but it wasn't prepared by Wolfgang Puck. So in other words your paying for quality, and convenience. There are about roughly 900 Tires Plus stores, and about 3000 Firestone stores, yes they are pretty much the same company, so if you have a problem with a repair you can take it to any one of these stores and have the problem resolved.
Say you have a head gasket done at a mom and pop shop, which is fairly expensive and time consuming work, you take your car on a 3000 mile round trip, 600 miles into the trip your head gaskets fail again. You think the next shop is going to do them again and just send a bill to the original shop that did the repair and let you take your car. No you are going to have to pay for it again. Then when you get home you are going to have to have to go back to "Bob's" repair down the street from your house and try to get back that say $1500 the charged you to do it the first time, Tires Plus or a Firestone store would just take care of it (beautiful thing about big corporations and sister stores).
I could keep going about this downright ridiculous stupid complaint. So the next time you want to complain about the price of something, stop and think about how much and what it takes to run the backside of the business!! P.S.- Also a lot of part manufactures are starting to not give warranties on parts unless certain procedures are done during the repair, or if the parts are not installed by professional technicians (that means they are asking for repair receipts). Do you think that a vehicle warranty company wants a backyard mechanic working on their vehicles? No, they make sure that the repairs are being done by highly qualified reputable shops.
APPLE VALLEY, MINNESOTA -- Last Friday was a very bad, very sad day for me - had to give one of my cats to the Humane Society. So needless to say, I was, and still am, a wreck. Anyway, my headlight had burned out a few days before, and I had to get it replaced since the cops in my town like to pull you over for that kind of stuff, and I had to take my son to a football game that night. I usually replace them myself, but for some reason, I couldn't get the bulb out, and I had no energy to try.
I called Tires Plus in Apple Valley. They were booked for the night, but the guy (I hate to say that I can't remember his name) said to bring it in and they would try to fit me in. I brought it in and spoke to someone else. He quoted me a price of $46, which is a lot more than it costs to do it myself, but who was I to argue? He also said he would call me when it was done. I told him I had to wait since I had no ride home. He said it would take at least a half hour to replace, and that was just after they were able to get it in.
The man who had spoken to me on the phone was right there and said that he would get it in now. He probably wanted the mental mess (me) out of his shop and not scaring away the customers. It was done in 15 min, and he himself did the work and charged me $26. I thanked him for squeezing me in, and he said he just wanted to make sure I was driving safely.
It's the little things like that that make a difference. He could have told me to pound sand or made me wait for hours, but he didn't. He took time out of his busy schedule to help me out, and he charged about half what was quoted. I wish I could remember his name - it's probably on the work order that I can't find. But in any event, thank you to him and to Tires Plus in the AV. It was a bright spot in an otherwise lousy day.
7119 HIGHWAY 85, RIVERDALE, GA 30274, GEORGIA -- August 2008 - Upon going to Tires Plus to get tires rotated on 2 vehicles in one day, they completed vehicle 1 and was done in a reasonably amount of time. While waiting for vehicle 2 to be done, they apparently forgot that I was waiting for the 2nd vehicle. So from about noon until almost closing I sat waiting to have tires rotated. Due to the mix-up, the M. O.D. (Manager on Duty) offered me a "FREE" oil change for my troubles. Two weeks later, I had my vehicle taken in for the oil change. The Technician didn't bother to ask what type or kind of oil we had been using in the vehicle and decided to just go with what the car manufacturer suggested.
My SUV is a 2002 Dodge Durango and I have not had any problems with it until this "FREE" oil change. Tires Plus used a synthetic oil in my SUV which was not the type oil that has been used previously. This oil cause my SUV to lose pressure and knock really badly. Upon contacting the Manager at Tires Plus, he said that it was not their fault and that they only put the oil in that was suggested by the manufacturer. Finally, after many calls the manager decided to change the oil again and use the type we had been using. However, it was a bit late and the damage had been done.
Even after calling the HQ and sending them a letter of what had happened, they refuse to acknowledge this issue. Over the course of a week after the oil change I had to have my SUV towed 3 times. I finally had to take the vehicle to the Dodge dealership to fix the problem and spent over $2500 in a matter of one week for what was supposed to be a "FREE" oil change. I would not recommend Tires Plus for any service.
SUWANEE, GEORGIA -- On Wednesday, August 22nd I took my vehicle in to Tires Plus on Lawrenceville - Suwanee Road for repairs and maintenance that I knew legitimately needed to be done. Once the vehicle went through diagnostic they explained what was wrong with my power steering and the tech who showed me even said that it could lock up at any time and instead of just needing to replace the power steering hoses and reservoir, he'd have to do the rack and pinion also. Fine. I was also having my tires rotated and balanced, an alignment and oil change. A couple of days later I noticed the tires were rotated side to side instead of front to back... my vehicle is FWD so that served no purpose.
But the terrible part was this morning. While driving my child to school, my power steering went completely out. Fortunately I was on a neighborhood road, or it could have been deadly. Had it happened while I was turning across a major road or on the interstate, it would have been tragic. If I did not have arm strength there is no way I could have made it back home. Once I flagged down a neighbor to take my child to school, I got back to my house to discover my reservoir was completely empty and there was fluid all over my driveway and the street. In addition it was on my tire and still dripping out after 20 minutes.
When I called them, all I got from the service manager was him whining about 'don't yell at me ma'am' and 'there's no reason to be ugly'. Neither of which was I doing. I was angry and it showed in my voice. I instructed them to come get the vehicle and "I want you to make it someone's life's work today to fix that car and fix it right." I have been waiting now 3 hours and have received no phone call.
In addition to the potentially horrid safety outcome, I am scheduled to travel tomorrow. Had this happened hours away from my home, he would have REALLY heard me yell. I will be insisting on a full refund of all the previous work as well as a written guarantee that any damage incurred from this incident will be repaired, correctly and professionally, at no charge. He must think that a woman can't figure these things out, but this single mom is about to show him quite the opposite.
EAGAN, MINNESOTA -- DO NOT GO HERE!!! They may give you the cheapest quotes for a car repair (that's why I initially went there) but the parts they put in are CHEAP and WILL BREAK!! I first went in because my vehicle was having a hard time starting. They determined that my fuel pump was bad. Fair enough, that's kind of what I expected was wrong. Then the sales manager very slyly convinced me that the front breaks needed to be replaced so I went with it. While they were at it, they checked for leaks in my A/C and recharged it.
I drive my car off of the lot and get onto the freeway and my car starts dying. Just completely stalling and shutting off. So they came with a tow and brought it back to the shop where they determined it was a bad fuel pump and they would replace it. So I get my car back again and no more than 24 hours after my car is having a hard time starting AND my A/C doesn't work anymore. So they determine that it's ANOTHER bad fuel pump and NOW my A/C is leaking and needs a new condenser.
So I (stupidly) okay the condenser to be replaced and he calls back shortly after telling me that they broke a pressurized line and it's going to cost another $150 to replace. Bah.. okay so I did it (again, stupidly). So I get my car back and NO MORE THAN 12 HOURS LATER the A/C stops working. So I AGAIN bring it back to them and now it's the evaporator which is leaking and it will cost $894 to replace. That's when I finally stopped. SPARE YOURSELF THE TIME AND MONEY BY GOING SOMEWHERE ELSE!!! They WILL give you the runaround until they get the most money out of you as they can!
My ex wife established nearly $120,000 in fraudulent debt against my name over the couple of years leading up to our divorce. Some of the companies involved have been very gracious and helpful, a few not so much, and a couple more truly unhelpful and entirely unprofessional.
Tires Plus, owned by Firestone, was the very first to immediately recognize this for what it is: fraud. I had to do nothing but point up to them that the account was opened physically in one of their stores, and that the credit application bore a forgery of my signature and they immediately stopped reporting it as my debt and stopped trying to collect from me. I was very heartened by this and it helped me greatly in dealing with the rest of this fraudulent debt. Thanks, Tires Plus and Firestone!
55305 -- HIGHLY NON-COOPERATIVE!!! I had a problem with my engine check light, so went to Tires Plus for engine inspection. They told me the possible problem. Since fixing the problem was quite expensive affair so I wanted to get a second opinion and also wanted to know more about it through internet. But when I called back these guys for the error code they detected for my car's problem, (Error code was also not mentioned in the diagnostic report given to me.) they made unacceptable excuses of not providing it to me.
This was really very discouraging to continue services with them. And I also felt cheated, as I could not get complete information for my diagnostics. I think I would never go to Tire Plus again!!!
ORANGE CITY, FLORIDA -- Within the hour of having my tires installed an attendant came over and explained that one tire has not arrived and that the wait will be longer. I had to take my son to work at that point. They drove my son to work for me while my tires where installed. Beyond and above customer service. Awesome!
KENNESAW, GEORGIA -- 2000 Toyota Camry's "check engine" light illuminated. Codes read by Toyota dealership/Advance auto parts all said "egr system". Egr valve and sensor were replaced, and the light kept coming on. Tires Plus claimed to have diagnostics available to them (that Toyota dealership was unable to perform) to pinpoint exact part causing the "check engine" light. Took Toyota Camry to Tires Plus at 11:28 am, "**" said it would take an hour, and told us we had to drop it off, no waiting allowed. Called every 45 min all afternoon- were told it hadn't been looked at yet- called at 3:45, explained we needed the car and were on our way to get it.
We go there, and "**" informs us that full payment of services not done is required to return our car. He explains that it is a "downpayment", even tho we are paying the total price, bc the job isn't complete. I suggest that since they had the car 4.5 hours, for what was claimed to be an hour job, and only ran the codes (free at any autoparts store, and we told them the results), that we leave without paying. Payment is only due when a service is done. Since they are only spitting out the exact code WE gave them we don't believe they even looked at the car. ** refused to give back car until we paid. BEWARE Tires Plus in Kennesaw!
I had some noise coming from rear of my car so I went to my local Tires Plus to check on problem. They find that my brake caliper was stuck and brake pads needed to be replaced and they recommended to change it on both sides. Estimate was $ 600. After some discounts it came to about $ 500. They had job done in about 1 hour! But problem is after find out that brake caliper for my car costs about $ 25 so for 2 of them is $50 and pads cost about $ 25 so total parts they used cost $ 75 plus labor $ 90 hour plus taxes and other fees they should not charge me more than $ 200!
They overcharged me about $ 300! They also charged me $ 45 for oil change and I was promised 1 hour wait time but they made me wait for 4 hours! Before that I replaced two 15 inch front tires for 175 and asked for all season tires but they installed winter snow tires in August! So my advice just stay away from them and check your local parts store for parts you need. Buy parts yourself and have mechanic do the job. You will save lots of $$.