Mercedes-Benz Forum banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
1982 300D Turbodiesel 212K or so, it doesn't work anymore :-)
Joined
·
216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just wanted some of ya'll on the forum to share in the laughter I just had...inquired about a quote for a valve adjustment from a local indy...

"Hi Jay. I can do your valve adjustment for three hours labor at $85/hr plus $15 for the valve cover gasket. That puts the total, before tax, at $270. Just give a call if you want to schedule something."

:eek::eek::eek::eek:

we all gotta eat...but...seriously???
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,704 Posts
My indy recently raised the price from $90 to $120. They charge $90/hour. His explanation had something to do with the shop now using a different procedure manual w different "rates", etc...I guess they changed the book from which they get their "book rates".

Regardless, $270 is way too much.
 

·
Registered
1984 300D
Joined
·
5,710 Posts
My indy recently raised the price from $90 to $120. They charge $90/hour. His explanation had something to do with the shop now using a different procedure manual w different "rates", etc...I guess they changed the book from which they get their "book rates".

Regardless, $270 is way too much.
Different companies sell those "Flat Rate" Manuals. Depending on which company's Flate Rate Manual you buy the Rate will be higher or lower.

So Shops by the Flate Rate Manual that give them a higher rate.
When a Customer questions the repair cost they pull the Flat Rate Manual out and point to the charge. That normally shuts the Customer up.

This works because we believe something that is written over what someone tells us.

Like the "Kelly Blue Book" on used Cars the Flate Rate Manuals are supposed to be used as a guide: a guide for Shops doing work on a Vehicle that they have never done before and do not no how long the Job will take and do not know what to charge (it also estimates how long the job would take).
Instead it has been turned into a Scam.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,704 Posts
Different companies sell those "Flat Rate" Manuals. Depending on which company's Flate Rate Manual you buy the Rate will be higher or lower.

So Shops by the Flate Rate Manual that give them a higher rate.
When a Customer questions the repair cost they pull the Flat Rate Manual out and point to the charge. That normally shuts the Customer up.

This works because we believe something that is written over what someone tells us.

Like the "Kelly Blue Book" on used Cars the Flate Rate Manuals are supposed to be used as a guide for Shops doing work on a Vehicle that they have never done before and do not no how long the Job will take and do not know what to charge (it also estimates how long the job would take).
Instead it has been turned into a Scam.
Yeah, tell me about it. Unfortunately I'm not equipped to do many repairs myself and haven't found a good shop in SD that doesn't use book rates etc.
 

·
Registered
1984 300D
Joined
·
5,710 Posts
Yeah, tell me about it. Unfortunately I'm not equipped to do many repairs myself and haven't found a good shop in SD that doesn't use book rates etc.
Are you close enough to a State line that you could to out of state to have the work done?

There was a comment that I read that seems to be true "If you own a old Mercedes you are either rich or a Mechanic".

In the particular case I would give the Mercedes Dealer a call and see what their charge would be.

I used to be a Diesel Mechanic and my pressure rises when I read about overcharging for jobs.
And, even with the high prices they often do a bad job.

Your best defense is to start learning some new skills!
 

·
Registered
1982 300D Turbodiesel 212K or so, it doesn't work anymore :-)
Joined
·
216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thing is...i don't have the wrenches and really don't have the time right now...and it doesn't seem as though i'm going to have the time for another couple weeks/months...

my benz is sitting in the yard and i don't want to drive it until i get the valves adjusted for diagnostic reasons...

I'd pay 50-75bucks just to get it done by someone thats done it a bunch of times...but 300 bucks is aggravatingly expensive...

the horribly thing is most everyone i called today was about the same amount...except for one buy thats about 60 miles from my house...he'll do it for 120...

its a little frustrating...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,704 Posts
Are you close enough to a State line that you could to out of state to have the work done?

There was a comment that I read that seems to be true "If you own a old Mercedes you are either rich or a Mechanic".

In the particular case I would give the Mercedes Dealer a call and see what their charge would be.

I used to be a Diesel Mechanic and my pressure rises when I read about overcharging for jobs.
And, even with the high prices they often do a bad job.

Your best defense is to start learning some new skills!
Nope. The closest state line is actually Mexico. Not going there. There are mechanics that charge less, but even the cheapest mechanics that might not be diesel or MB familiar will charge at least $75 or $80 an hour. I trust my indy guy to do the job right and haven't had a problem yet.

The MB dealer near me is good for parts price wise. I recently bought discs and rotors for my w203 and did the install. Parts from the dealer were about the same price as peachparts and autohausaz. However the labor rate at the dealer is $135 per hour. Marble floors and free coffee don't pay for themselves....The indy's know this and charge $90 knowing that its good business. I believe that much of the higher labor rates in SD stem from high real estate costs.

It's not so much a lack of skills. Moreso lack of space, garage, facilities, time, etc. (I don't even have a flat driveway/workspace that will allow me to put the car on stands). I can do a lot of things and have learned a ton owning a w123 for a few years. Yet, a valve job is a $120 once every couple years. Not a huge expense to me. The only major expense I've had in more than two years is a steering box replacement. Boy did I paid for that one. :eek:
 

·
Registered
1982 300D Turbodiesel 212K or so, it doesn't work anymore :-)
Joined
·
216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Where do you live?
I live north of Atlanta about 30 minutes...all the good guys are at least an hour away...i guess i need to clarify so as to not upset the indy's on this site that give out sound advice...i'm not really upset about the labor rate...85 bucks an hour seems to be pretty standard where I live...i'm more upset about the guy wanting 3 hours of labor time...I actually talked to one guy today and he told me that he charged min of 1 hour...and that everything after tax was going to be 120...thats fair IMO...he's just an hour or more away...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
238 Posts
Overcharge

Mercedes in Pleasanton, Ca did the same thing with a E320 CDI we own. The check engine light came on and we have a scanner and plugged it in, the error was a glow plug on cylinder 5. We decided to wait to get it done. We went to California and they said it was a glow plug and $475.00 EGR valve. The total to do the job would be $1150.00. We went to auto parts and bought a set of bosch glow plugs for $85.00. I replaced them myself, no other parts, no EGR valve. We were getting thrown under the bus to keep the dealer with cash flow. Never go to them again.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
496 Posts
Easy.

It's certainly not a hard job, especially once you know what you're doing.

The over 200$ price is a bit steep, but I could see it if they'd never done it before, being wary of it turning to a headache... and if they'd not done it before, I'd rather not have them learn on mine...

-Ghan
 

·
Registered
2008 E320 Bluetec, 1988 560SL totalled unto death). 1997 Dodge Ram 1500, 1983 300CD
Joined
·
1,342 Posts
123 valve adjustment

Should be one hour or less labor charge plus gasket. Although it is an easy task with a modest investment in wrenches, it was not worth it to me either when I had my 84 300D. Dealer (NOT an independent) charged 1 hour and a gasket. They gave me a loaner for the day and also returned my car washed.

This sounds like a rare rip from an indy.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top