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What's the biggest lie that a mechanic has ever told you?

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fpressly
4059 Rider Driver
 Posted 6 months, 1 week ago

I'll be the first to tell you mechanics do not have a stellar reputation when it come to diagnosing and quoting costs on repairs. 

My biggest lie just happened last week. I just bought a motorcycle and took it to a local mechanic to get a back tire, oil change and investigate a small oil leak. I took all the parts and tire in with me. The following week the mechanic called and told me that the oil leak was the “neutral switch’ and would cost $250 to fix ($200 LABOR AND $50 PARTS). He also told me it would cost $200 for the oil change I said (WHAT??) he said yeah he would have to take off the exhaust system and running board to get to the filter. Changing the rear tire was $60. I was looking at about $500. After watching a few YouTube videos about the subject I called the mechanic back and gave him a piece of my mind.

I told him he must be confused. I then went on to explain tool by tool what it would take to change the oil. The oil plug took a 17mm box end wrench. The outside cover was three 4mm hex bolts. The filter cover was five 5mm hex bolts. That uncovered the filter. Remove the old filter spread oil on the rubber of the new filter. Change the O-ring in the filter cover and lube with oil. Reassemble with 7 ft/lbs of torque on the eight hex bolts and 32 ft/lbs on the oil plug. Pour in 3 quarts of oil. Total time 30 minutes tops.

The neutral switch did not need replacing, it still worked fine. It was merely an oil leak around the neutral switch (not uncommon for the make model of my bike) that required a new O-ring ($4) and re-torquing. The hardest part was getting to it after which it took three screws to remove it. 30 minutes tops.

The mechanic sa...

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I'll be the first to tell you mechanics do not have a stellar reputation when it come to diagnosing and quoting costs on repairs. 

My biggest lie just happened last week. I just bought a motorcycle and took it to a local mechanic to get a back tire, oil change and investigate a small oil leak. I took all the parts and tire in with me. The following week the mechanic called and told me that the oil leak was the “neutral switch’ and would cost $250 to fix ($200 LABOR AND $50 PARTS). He also told me it would cost $200 for the oil change I said (WHAT??) he said yeah he would have to take off the exhaust system and running board to get to the filter. Changing the rear tire was $60. I was looking at about $500. After watching a few YouTube videos about the subject I called the mechanic back and gave him a piece of my mind.

I told him he must be confused. I then went on to explain tool by tool what it would take to change the oil. The oil plug took a 17mm box end wrench. The outside cover was three 4mm hex bolts. The filter cover was five 5mm hex bolts. That uncovered the filter. Remove the old filter spread oil on the rubber of the new filter. Change the O-ring in the filter cover and lube with oil. Reassemble with 7 ft/lbs of torque on the eight hex bolts and 32 ft/lbs on the oil plug. Pour in 3 quarts of oil. Total time 30 minutes tops.

The neutral switch did not need replacing, it still worked fine. It was merely an oil leak around the neutral switch (not uncommon for the make model of my bike) that required a new O-ring ($4) and re-torquing. The hardest part was getting to it after which it took three screws to remove it. 30 minutes tops.

The mechanic said, “ if you know all that, why don’t you do this yourself?” I told him I didn’t have the time or tools. He said he would call me back when he got to his shop. The next day he called me and said he made a mistake and that the total parts and labor would be $230. Which I still thought was high as I didn’t put him at no more than an hour and a half labor ($150).

Anyway, I’ll be looking for a new mechanic. Thanks for your upvote.

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    StuffinMuffin
    702 Driver Rider
     6 months ago

    Caution to Drivers with Mechanics - My two cents - Mileage vs. Years"

    All dealerships and also most mechanics look at your mileage and recommend services and replacements according to the figures set by the manufacturer.  This can often be a traip, and it is NOT the way to maintain a car that is being driven for rideshares.

    This goes with a lot of things. It can be something minor as filters and windshield wipers, but it can also be spark plugs or alternators.  Don't just swap them because the mileage is high.  Remember you drive 5 to 10 times more than normal driver.  Not every part wears just because the car is moving more.

    I suggest:

    • Look at manufacturer's recommendations on # of month/years.  Don't just go by mileage to determine replacements and repairs.
    • Many parts can wait until they start to show wear, making sounds, or actually break. 
    • Routinely take your car to a trusted mechanisc and create a relationships.  Take it in oft...

    Read more...

    Caution to Drivers with Mechanics - My two cents - Mileage vs. Years"

    All dealerships and also most mechanics look at your mileage and recommend services and replacements according to the figures set by the manufacturer.  This can often be a traip, and it is NOT the way to maintain a car that is being driven for rideshares.

    This goes with a lot of things. It can be something minor as filters and windshield wipers, but it can also be spark plugs or alternators.  Don't just swap them because the mileage is high.  Remember you drive 5 to 10 times more than normal driver.  Not every part wears just because the car is moving more.

    I suggest:

    • Look at manufacturer's recommendations on # of month/years.  Don't just go by mileage to determine replacements and repairs.
    • Many parts can wait until they start to show wear, making sounds, or actually break. 
    • Routinely take your car to a trusted mechanisc and create a relationships.  Take it in often, they will look at it for free if you regularly give them the business.   Let them tell you when things need replaced.
    • Replace parts on "as needed" basiss, unless it's something that can cause more damage to the car if it brakes.  Some things like tires are solely dependent on mileage.  Some things like timing belts should be replaced preemptively.  Do replace them per recommendations.

    Good luck, every one!

    Read less...

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    BeMatt
    103 Rider
     6 months ago

    Once I ran a curb an popped my tire, put my spare on and drove to a mechanic to get a new tire. Mechanic told me that my whole axis was shifted and it would be a few thousand dollars. He made this big show of wiggling my tire back and forth to show me how unsafe my car was. I took my car to another shop (one that was highly recommended) and they found that the first mechanic had loosened one of the bolts on my tire to make it appear wiggly!! Other than that my car was completely fine. Unreal that this guy let me drive on a loose tire in hopes that he would make some money. This was 8 years ago and I still get heated about it.

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    WendyC
    Driver
     6 months ago

    Several years ago, I had a 2002 Ford Explorer. We always took VERY good care of of, and were only the 2nd owners. We took it in routinly for oil changes, tire rotation, transmission flushes, the works. We ended up moving from Dallas back to Austin so we had to find a new shop to take it to. When I took it in for it's scheduled oil change they had it back in the bay for about 5 minutes and came out into the lobby with a print out for me with a $10,000 quote stating that the timing chain was shot and needed to be replaced immediately! Come on now.... I am no mechanic, but I was raised around them and I am no dummy! If my timing chain was shot, first and foremost, I would be hearing some sort of noise. Second, THE CAR WOULDN'T HAVE RAN!! SMH The nerve of some people. They think that just because I am a female, I don't know anything about cars.... Well, you got another thing coming

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      LG-PA
      716 Driver
       6 months ago

      Vehicles with timinig chain rather than timing belt do not typically need a chain replaced, so it would be nice to shove a page from the owner's manaul into mechanic's face:)

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      JMartensen
      149
       6 months ago

      If the timing chain or belt was gone, your engine and its pistons inside would fall apart. Your car would be dead on the side of the road.

      Good for you to have known that.  I am not sure if that's a common knowledge.  To think that this mechanic may have gotten away with it with others makes me really mad.

      BTW, I feel like $10,000 repair should be a red-flag on its own.  Removing and replacing timing belt is a huge pain, of course, and requires lots of hours.  If the engine is busted, sure, maybe more labor.  However, $10,000 on what I assume to be a 10+ year old car (I am assuming), it just ridiculous.  Might as well total the car and move on.

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    SyedAli
    213 Driver
     6 months ago

    Every time I take my car in, they tell me my brakes are shot.  When I point out any sound my car makes they always tell me it's the brakes and they tell me to replace it.  Yeah, I get it.  I drive a lot now, but the # of pads that I go through is insane.

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      fpressly
      4059 Rider Driver
       6 months ago

      If you are gong through that many brake pads you need to look to other things to be the cause. One contributor could be the rotor (if these are disk brakes). If the rotor is worn one side more than the other or deep grooves can be seen in the surface, that will wear some pads out quick. I seldom have my rotors turned ($15) because it cost 3/4 of cost of a new one. $20 for a new rotor and a like new braking experience. Make sure your hand brake is disengaged.

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    kias_revenge
    131 Rider
     6 months ago

    Headlight fluid needed replacing.

    Ok, it was not me, but my girlfriend. She was smart enough to walk away at least. A keeper.

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    dread
    Rider
     6 months ago

    I have such a hard time trusting any mechanic. I always google prices and get multiple quotes. Such a pain.

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      LG-PA
      716 Driver
       6 months ago

      Much of this Mechanic BS goes away when one knows how to perform basic maintenace on their car by themselves. Like front and rear brakes, air and cabin air filter, wipers, topping off fluids.

      I buy tires off craigslist :)

      Of course more complicated isseus requiring diagnosis and special equipment are to be done by professional, so a recommendation is the way to go.

      For example the only thing I trust Firestone with is Oil changes and alignment. But they always make it a ppint to recommend a bunch of services I do not need :). Check this out: I went to Autozone and put new set of wiper blades, then drove across the street to Firestone to get oil changed. 1 hour later I get a call from Firestone with a recommendation to put on new wiper blades. I laughed at them.