All she got was an oil change but thought group might be interested in
Her Forester is only two years old but they were pushing for 30,000
mile/30 month service. Me, I've got and '03, and I do service on miles
with consideration on making sure oil is changed twice a year (DYI) and
rubber items like hoses and belts could age faster.
I thought I got stung by 30,000 mile service as I just gave it to them
and told them to do it without specifications. Cost $585.
Yes. Dealers make up a "standard" service package that generally
includes a lot of actions that aren't called for in the service
manual. On my Infiniti, they rotated the tires even though the
owner's manual specifically says not to rotate the tires on this
car. A Honda dealer used to top up the windshield washer fluid and
charge a dollar an ounce. A local service station, when replacing
the timing belt of a Volvo, also replaced the serpentine belt even
though it was not on the list I gave them and they themselves had
replaced the serpentine belt just 10,000 miles earlier. Tell them to
do what's listed in the manual and nothing more. If they do extra
without permission, refuse to pay for it.
You only have ONE protection. A signed work order.
Insist on it.
You tell the service writer exactly what you want done and they tell
you how much - on the work order..
You sign it.
You get a copy.
If it needs anything else they call you. You authorize it or not. It
gets written on your work order with "authorized (or authourized up
here in Canada) by phone".
You pay for what you authourized.
I read the dealers rec's and he does things we don't do at our
dealership. That being said, Subaru sells a "Subaru Added
Security" (SAS) program with new Subarus. Kind of a "we will do these
services at this price for you" One of our standard 30k will have, All
fluids change, plugs, both a/f; A SAS will have oil, coolant brake
fluid and a few other items. By doing a SAS, you are maintaining the
warrenty standard for your car even tho it is 50% less done than the
So be informed, and take the owners manual in and say, "This is what I
want done" as per the owners manual. they cant argue with you.
FWIW I prefer to have a local, reliable, independent technician. Armed
with receipts it assures warranty repairs when necessary. In the
meantime you save because your local tech will only do the work specified
as he desires to retain your confidence for future work.
Provided the formerly reliable independent tech doesn't manage to fuck
up a subaru timing belt change that takes months to debug with subtle
engine performance issues as one flattened tooth of the new belt
allows it to pop in and out of place just beyond the ECU's ability to
compensate (and perhaps legitimately blame it on a faulty new subaru
tensioner he'd installed at the same time), then go through a nasty
divorce, get behind on his finances, take your money for some major
engine work he didn't actually perform, then flee the country owing
snap on tools $10k and leaving you holding the bag for a head gasket
and cat job you paid for but turns out... he didn't actually do. But
boy he steam cleaned the engine well.
And you get a nasty surprise of a pool of oil on your garage floor 2
years later, and get to pay for a head gasket job again and your P0420
codes keep coming because your supposedly "new" cat mysteriuosly has a
hole in it, this time you may choose to do it at a dealer with factory
trained Subaru techs that you could actually find a sue if they didn't
do it right or do what they said they would.
I share this hoping that no one have to repeat my experience in trying
to find a local, reliable, and competent (with these weird ass
engines) tech for their Subaru.
And, on a separate note, if your last name is Trznadel, and you're a
master mechanic, and had a shop in the suburbs of Chicago, and if any
of this resonates with you...wherever you are, FUCK YOU!
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