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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a fairly new vehicle and was told by the dealer that if I took to a regular shop for maintenance,I'd void the warranty.

Dealership prices for services are super expensive! I'd prefer to take it to another shop.
 

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whats more expensive at a dealer? I find oil changes, tire rotations, etc are not that much more.. just because jiffy lube has a flashing light that says oil changes for 49.99 doesnt mean thats what you'll spend when you go there.. by the time they up-sell you to synthetic oil and maybe get you for windshield wipers, cabin air filter etc you probably would have saved money had you gone to a dealer.

While you are within your warranty period I would highly recommend going to your dealer - However DO NOT get up-sold on services by the service advisor, just look at your owners manual that came with the vehicle and follow that service schedule. Just remember those service advisors are commissioned to up-sell you things you may not need (this is just a true at Jiffy Lube as it is at a dealership)

ALSO - dont be afraid to ask the person who sold you the car or the service manager what discounts they will offer you if you do all your service at the dealership.

I think far too many people write off the dealership in favor of "Jim's Garage" down the road without giving the dealer a chance to earn the service business.
 

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whats more expensive at a dealer? I find oil changes, tire rotations, etc are not that much more..
This is what you call a loss leader. The vast majority of people who go to stealerships only understand those basic things

Then they hit you with the $49.99 air filter, $59.99 radiator anti-freeze, $29.99 shop supplies and $967.23 brake job that wasn't required and they may or may not have done. Every now and then I do need to visit the stealerships and I like to test them and act a bit dumb. They fail miserably every time. They don't follow the book at all (they did in Germany though) In NA they have basically mastered the art of extracting money for as little effort as humanly possible

Sometimes I give young people advice or look at their stealership invoices. It never fails to be a rip off.
 

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I have found that dealer service pricing can be variable. Sometimes good, sometimes bad. At least this is my experience with Honda and Toyota dealers.

My cars are older now. Just took the Honda in for an oil change. They had a special. But the real reason is that both Honda and Toyota give me a list of all the things that need attention (according to them) and the cost. Which is exactly why they often run a special. Other than the standard fluids, brake, transmission, etc, I take the list to my mechanic and he does what needs to be done. We will put the Solara on the road next month. First oil change will be with the dealer for that very reason. Other than that it goes to Elmo.

Overall, I believe that we have saved a fair bit of money by avoiding dealer service on most items. I do not have to pay for a fancy lobby, coffee service, rides to and from the dealer.

I believe that one reason our repair costs are low is because I keep track of all the fluids and replace them at intervals as per the manual. So...the cost that the Honda dealer gave me to do brake and power steering fluid flushes/replacement is in the ballpark of what my mechanic would charge. For just about any other mtce item I go to our regular mechanic shop.
 

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whats more expensive at a dealer? I find oil changes, tire rotations, etc are not that much more.. just because jiffy lube has a flashing light that says oil changes for 49.99 doesnt mean thats what you'll spend when you go there.. by the time they up-sell you to synthetic oil and maybe get you for windshield wipers, cabin air filter etc you probably would have saved money had you gone to a dealer.
Dealers can up sell as well, no difference there. If they've already told you it'll "void the warranty" if you go somewhere else that is a huge red flag to stay away.

The key is finding a trustworthy garage.
 

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Find a trustworthy mechanic, keep all receipts and make sure you follow your car maintenance schedule.

Warranty is honored as long as your maintenance is done and you keep record. You can also do it yourself - doesn't matter who does it, as long as its done properly.
 

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Hell, I don't buy our cars new, but I did buy a third party extended warrantee on my used Volt.
Yes likely not money well spent.
But I inquired and got the response in writing by the underwriter that it covers gas and electric power train.
Rationale was that there are some parts on this car very pricey to repair.replace, and likely no third party sources.

I do my own oil changes. Buy CTC synth oil on sale and the recommended filter and stick that receipt in the maintenance book, and note when the services were done. Same for air filter, not quite to spec interval on cabin air filter.

I did take it to the dealer for the recommended cooling and drive train fluid swap and flush at recommended intervals. Kept those bills in with the warrantee booklet. Lots of fluid circuits s in this thing, so better to let them sort this out.

No need for any claims to third party.

Did have electric drive train battery state of charge control module go flaky (design fault- lots died this way) and replaced by dealer at no charge. Felt good to see the mechanics did not know the work around to start it in the failed state and hear them round up all the hands to push it in to the lift where the battery tray was pulled to get to the offending flaky part.
 

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I do my own oil changes. Buy CTC synth oil on sale and the recommended filter and stick that receipt in the maintenance book, and note when the services were done. Same for air filter, not quite to spec interval on cabin air filter.
Same here, do 99% myself so I know it is done right and with the right parts. :)

At least a couple times a year there are some good sales on oil with online rebates. Got top shelf syn oil last year for $17 per 5L (reg. $58).
 

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My dealer is good to deal with when buying. Their service dept is terrible. I wouldn't trust them to diagnose anything. Over the last few years they have been wrong so many times it's not even funny. I let them do oil changes but that's it.
Wait aren't you @Mechanic

 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My dealer is good to deal with when buying. Their service dept is terrible. I wouldn't trust them to diagnose anything. Over the last few years they have been wrong so many times it's not even funny. I let them do oil changes but that's it.
What if you took it to another dealership? Rather a billy bob's auto shop.. I guess I could try that or do all dealers charge the same.price?
 

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What if you took it to another dealership? Rather a billy bob's auto shop.. I guess I could try that or do all dealers charge the same.price?
Different dealers charge different prices.
I go to the dealer while under warranty, at least the bumper to bumper portion.

Oil changes are a pretty straightforward one, but I take it to a garage because then I have a paper trail to fight warranty rejections.
 

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I took my car to a Nissan dealer for an oil change and a interior are filter change. Took 2 hours and was charged $170. I lost one of the clips for holding the cover on the engine air filter. They told me the only option was to replace the entire housing for $500. They also said my drive belt was cracked and a replacement would cost me $160. I declined there offers. I ordered two new replacement clips online from eBay for $11.00. I took the car to local mechanic and he replaced the drive belt. Surprise, surprise their was no crack on the drive belt.I try to avoid dealer shops when I can. This experience only confirms that point of view.
 

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whats more expensive at a dealer? I find oil changes, tire rotations, etc are not that much more.. just because jiffy lube has a flashing light that says oil changes for 49.99 doesnt mean thats what you'll spend when you go there.. by the time they up-sell you to synthetic oil and maybe get you for windshield wipers, cabin air filter etc you probably would have saved money had you gone to a dealer ...
You must have a generous dealer to be discounting or providing for free the synthetic oil, windshield wipers, cabin filter etc. ;)


Personally, when I've been at a place that is up selling or wanting to replace what I can do myself, I say no thanks. And that includes the dealership.


... Just remember those service advisors are commissioned to up-sell you things you may not need (this is just a true at Jiffy Lube as it is at a dealership)
Odd ... you seem to be saying "no thanks" does not work at Jiffy Lube but will work at the dealership. FWIW, the dealership is typically where I have to say "no thanks" the most.


... I think far too many people write off the dealership in favor of "Jim's Garage" down the road without giving the dealer a chance to earn the service business.
Maybe ... personally I use whomever is consistently good and provides good service at or lower than the dealership.


Cheers

PS
I've got invoices from both dealership and my preferred place for oil changes so I know the dealership is more expensive. Interestingly, if I can't get in at my favorite place when it is too busy, a non-brand dealer right beside my dealer is about five dollars more than the my favourite place and about forty dollar cheaper than my brand dealer.

Winter tires and rims, OTOH were cheaper from the dealership.
 

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I find the dealerships to be competitive on certain advertised services. Both dealerships we sometimes use, Toyota and Honda, have a list of similar services and prices listed in the service area. One Toyota dealership actually lists competitive prices from Canadian Tire, etc.

These are no doubt aimed to capture you as a customer and/or subsequently upsell you on additional services while you car is on the lift.

I believe the trick is to know which dealership offerings are competitive and which are not. Generally I believe the ones not advertised are the ones where they may not be as competitive.
 

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Just like independent shops, dealerships range from first rate to stealerships.

I go to the dealer during the bumper-to-bumper period (1 more year on our Mazda) and if necessary for warranty work on the power train (3 more years). Beyond that, I would rarely service a vehicle at dealerships. We have been satisfied with one of Kal Tire franchises near us for the past 10 years. They've got a pretty good reputation, at least in their 'home region' of the Okanagan Valley
 
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