Beware of These Common Car Repair Scams

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Ken hashiyama

Subject: Fake oil change scam

Another scam to watch out for is not getting your oil and filter changed when you have paid for the service. I recently encountered this when I had the service done at SpeeDee. To make things short, a leaking filter led me to discover the oil was not changed. You can tell the difference between old and new oil simply by the color. Old oil is brownish to blackish and opaque while new oil is yellowish and clear. Consumers can make a simple check by noting the color on the dip stick before and after the service. Oil on the stick after the change will be almost unnoticeable due to its clarity.

Arvin Borkar

Subject: Appreciate it

Yeah good point. I think many would miss that detail of just using the dipstick. I may do that since I had my oil changed yesterday. Now the only other thing is how do I know the filter was changed? That is a whole another animal. I am too lazy to go under my car and mark xs on it. I should just assume that if I throw away $30 every month, something had to have been done. The oil change though is key. I will check today.

MECHANIC

Subject: Ca maintenance

Cars require maintenance. You have to change your air filter, change your oil, change your spark plugs, change your park plug wires. change your gas filter, etc. If you don't do this to your $20,000 plus car it is not going to run. You are going to be that person that is on the side of the road that you pass as you drive down the highway to work. Spend some money on your car for gods sake.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had


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I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.


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I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.
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That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.