2009 Toyota Corolla

Tiny
RANBEAUX
  • MEMBER
  • 2009 TOYOTA COROLLA
2009 Toyota Corolla

I brought my car to a mechanic who said that he could diagnose the problem and repair it as efficiently and effectively as the dealer. After several days, he determined that he could not, and it had to go to the dealer for repair. Now this mechanic wnats me to pay an invoice for several hours of work at $112 per hour. Would most mechanics charge for investigating a problem, even if they cannot repair it?
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Thursday, January 21st, 2010 AT 4:27 PM

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Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
He may charge you a diagnostic charge, say $80-100 dollars, but not charge for labor without repairing anything.

Why on earth would you take a new car under warranty to a mechanic who (even if he could fix it) will charge you labor?
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Friday, January 22nd, 2010 AT 6:41 AM
Tiny
RANBEAUX
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The reason, on earth, is because it wasn't covered by warranty. I certainly would have taken it to the dealer (where it was, ultimately repaired) if that were the case!

The car is used by my son. He attempted to install a sound component (sub-woofers) and in the process, inadvertently cut some wires in the wiring harness. The mechanic determined that the ECM was "fried, " replaced that and it still didn't work. So, it had to go to the dealer, who determined the actual problem, repaired it and re-installed the original ECM, which worked fine.

Before the mechanic even looked at it, I described the situation to him and asked if it was something that he could do or if I should take it to the dealer. He assured me that he could do anything the dealer could do (though he didn't indicate that it would be at a labor rate that is 8% higher than the dealer and with about a 35% markup on parts. At best, this guy is incompetent. At worst, well, let's just say he is one of the guys that give you all a bad reputation. When he told me what the bill was expected to be, he suggested that I commit insurance fraud - file an insurance claim and say that someone broke into it.
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Friday, January 22nd, 2010 AT 10:53 AM
Tiny
MMPRINCE4000
  • EXPERT
Sorry I did't mean to come across as scoldng you :).

But be aware of anybody that says they can do "anything" a dealer can do, is red flag #1.

Dealers have hundreds of thousands of dollars of specialized equipment, tools and scanners.
Far more than the average "well eqipped" shop, but specialized for Toyota's.

I would take this guy to small claims court, get a statement from Toyota as to actual problem.

I can also tell you from experience that a majority of problems Toyota tech's face is repairing aftermarket add on equipment such as stereos, Cold air kits, headers, custom LARGE wheels.

Have you son contact Toyota and get their "TRD" booklet. It contains Toyota certified add-ons, such as wheels and exhaust systems. If installed by Toyota, it will not effect warranty.

And again, sorry if I insulted you, it was not intentional.
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Saturday, January 23rd, 2010 AT 8:43 AM

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