Why We Don't Trust Mechanics

My vehicle was making some distressing new noises this week. They seemed to originate from the front end (front wheel drive) during acceleration and cornerning, which is not a good combination. I was thinking CV joint or axle. It turns out to be the right half axle, which is being replaced.

However, when I called yesterday to make an appointment, the lady who took it asked me to summarize the symptoms, and I said, “Funny sounding vibration, in front.” She asked, “at highway speeds?” to which I responded, “Yes.”

Fast forward to the call from the mechanic. They recommended a replacement axle, and a few other things which I know are problems (but am ignoring), plus they strongly recommended I rotate and balance the tires, to remove the “vibration at highway speeds.” The kicker here is that there is no vibration at highway speeds that is attributable to my tires. Furthermore, my tires were newly bought and balanced less than two months ago. I know they tacked this on as a silly way to milk my wallet with unecessary work. This does not make me happy, and I plan to tell them about it when I get there.

Grr.

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2 Responses to Why We Don't Trust Mechanics

  1. Jim says:

    I’m not really a big fan of chain stores, but I really think the first entrepreneur to start a chain of high-service auto repair places will make out very well.

    Sort of like Meineke or Midas or any one of the local chains, but they can do EVERYTHING on a car, rather than just brakes, mufflers, etc.

  2. Annie says:

    @Jim: In this day and age of cars run by multiple on-board computers, I think it would be rather difficult for one business to be able to do EVERYTHING on the majority of cars out on the road.

    For example, the more recent GMs have up to 7 different computers on board to control different aspects of the car. Apparently (according to my brother the GM mechanic) GM decided this was easier and more cost efficient than having one main computer with separate processors for different functions.

    And also, @Bill, axle/CV issues are where the mechanics (more accurately, the dealer the mechanic is working for) make a killing on the car owner. A full axle costs less (if one buys at location other than the dealer/shop) and is generally easier to replace than CV joints. (Again, info coming from my brother the mechanic.)

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