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Auto Repair reviews in Winchester

  • A
    Bonnell Ford
    I highly recommend everyone in the body shop. Len and all the other made sure that the work was done perfectly. Len did a great job keeping me informed, working with the insurance to make sure my car was like new. In May 2017, I was concerned about a scratch by the right front bumper. Len went out of his way to remove the scratch with rubbing compound. Many thanks to Len and the crew for a truly fantastic job!
    - Elisabeth P.
  • A
    Main Street Citgo
    I have used them a few times, on different cars, water pump, alternator, brake lines, etc...   it is nice that they are close to home for us, and the shop is extremely neat and well kept.   Alternator they replaced went after 13 months just outside of warranty and I had to pay for labor a 2nd time but he got me a free alternator replacement.   He does give a hard sell sometimes though.   Overall a very good experience.
    - Steve F.
  • A
    Mark was supremely helpful from the get-go. Although I was not able to get in touch with him the day I called, after leaving a lengthy voicemail, Mark called back the next day and told me to swing by anytime. 
    Mark and Ryan are two very easy going individuals, but don't let that fool you ? they are very serious professionals and they are very good at what they do. After replacing the tires on the car (which they did cheaper than any other shop quoted), they both took the time to diagnose a long standing problem of a power steering pump that would seize every time the steering wheel hit it's extreme edge. Rather than telling me the same thing over and over, "to replace the pump all together," which I had heard at the Subaru shop, another local shop, and even at another Subaru in Florida, they took the time and patience to figure out the problem and fix it! Best of all, it was such a simple fix, he didn't charge me for it. 
    I am happy to say that I have found my local shop for my WRX. Being an avid car enthusiast, it's great to have someone I can fully trust at only a stone's throw from my own home!
    - Jaime R.
  • A
    Hometown Garage Inc
    I had a "check brakes" light on and took my car in.  They were honest with me in telling me that I could get some additional mileage on the brake pads, but the check brakes lights would stay on.  I decided to have the work done to avoid the nagging uneasiness with the light remaining on and the fact that I had already invested time in bringing the car in.
    The chauffeur service back to work was a nice touch.
    - Laurie C.
  • F
    Riverside Car Care
    Took my daughter's car to Riverside to have it inspected.  The car needed two bulbs and according to Riverside the two rear tires needed to be replaced.  I had the bulbs repaired and took the car to my tire guy, who is very well regarded in the business and who I have been using for all my cars for years, and he told me that the tires were good for another year.  I took it back to Riverside and they insisted the wear indicators showed the tires needed to be replaced.  I called my tire guy and he explained that there were two sets of wear indicators, 4/32 and 2/32, on those tires.  The 4/32 indicators were showing wear but the 2/32, which are the ones that matter for inspection, were fine.  The fact that there were two sets of wear indicators on those tires seemed to be news to Riverside.  In any case they refused to accept that they were  wrong and told me I could call the Registry and have them come down and look at it.  I took it to another inspection place who confirmed what my tire guy had said, that the tires were fine, and passed the car, of course at the cost of another inspection fee.
    - Michael M.
  • A
    I am quite pleased. "Michael" at Dave's was very clear about what needed to be done and why, kept me informed, did the work promptly, and saved me a significant amount of money in comparison with what I would have had to have paid elsewhere.
    - Richard H.
  • D
    Hometown Garage Inc
    Service is just OK - REAR BRAKE PADS and ROTORS. I had it done based on the reviews here on AL, which makes me wonder about the accuracy of these reviews, and the whole Angie's List concept. If it's all and only good reviews, what's the point? This service provider clearly overcharges (I won't say gauges) on the parts markup, but people don't seem to notice because they are "happy" with the service. I guess it's gotten that bad. 
    I was in the market to find a good reliable mechanic, since I moved, and it is very inconvenient to drive all the way back to Amherst for auto service, to a mechanic I trust. And that was all that matter, it thought - trust. But now I think fairness is what I'm looking for too.
    Home Town Garage brake parts markup is more than  2.5 x.  I called around (AFTER THE SERVICE - silly me), read from a number of online forums where mechanics discuss their business, read online forums where customers exchange opinions, and it comes down to the fact that mechanics markup parts generally in the range of 20% - 40%. Markup is higher for less expensive parts, because the absolute $$ number allows it as it does not "appear" as significant. I have not found anywhere that they charge 160% markup on top of parts cost. 
    In the end, I paid total $482 for a job that Monroe quoted me (AFTER the fact) - $300 (with the exact same parts as per their part number). I wanted to help the little guy. Silly me thinking it's better to support a local business, no questions asked - only reviews on AL.
    Brake job is no rocket science, however I did feel slight pulsation at high speeds (about 70mph) right after the service. Was contemplating bringing it back, but given my experience with them, now I can assume they'll just say - "it's your front brakes", and I wouldn't give them the job again. $200 is not the end of the world, but I just feel taken advantage of like an idiot.
    Our communication after the service:
    I just talked with a person at your shop. It was regarding my brake job for the Toyota Matrix this last week. I accepted the job thinking it was going to be reasonable cost considering the extent of the job done. Upon my review of the invoice I noticed the cost of the parts, and it struck me as very expensive (as I have had my brakes done by a shop before). So the parts you sold me are standard generic parts that cost about $34 for the R-brake pads set and $34 per R rotor retail (the actual model numbers you installed). With consideration that I could have procured even cheaper parts (as little as $17/pads set or $26 per rotor), and alternatively could have gone to high end - performance parts for about $50-$80, your charge to me for these parts was about $89 for the pads and $88 per one rotor. 2.6 X, or 160% strikes me as very, very high for your "standard markup" on parts which already include manufacturer's warranty. I was not even questioning your labor or tire rotation charges. My feeling is that you over charged me for these parts by about $160. Can someone answer how is it that you charge this much for parts on top of your business discount from the manufacturer/distributor? and on parts that come with manufacturer's warranty. You warranty your labor, and the manufacturer warranties the parts. This does not make much sense. Terribly disappointing.
    Hometown Garage Inc 9/10/2013
    Good Morning Armin,
    I'm sorry you are disappointed. 
    At Hometown Garage we quote the price and obtain authorization before performing any service so the customer is in control of the repair and there are no surprises when the job is done. 
    Your car was left at night for service. In the morning you called and were advised it needed rear brakes and the cost to repair. At that time you authorized the repairs be made and that the price was acceptable to you.
    You are correct that you can parts cheaper. That is a do it yourself price, similar to buying food at the grocery store. The same food will always cost more at a restaurant; as will parts replaced at a service center. I checked the pricing and it is within the standard range. The consumer site lists parts at $152 - $291 before fees, our price was $276.73 and we never charge shop supply fees. The invoice total did not exceed the authorization. 
    In reviewing your invoice I did find one mistake. You were charged full price for a tire rotation. Because of the overlap with the brake work it should have been discounted. Please call and I?ll have $30 credited back to your card.
    At Hometown Garage we have exceptional customer service, one of the best warranties in the area (24 months/24,000 miles parts and labor for defects in materials or workmanship), highly trained technicians, equipment equal to or better than that found in a dealership and complete most repairs the same day. Our goal is to be the best in the area, not the cheapest.
    Should you choose to visit us again, we will once again provide you with a quote, and would be glad to discuss other repair options, before any repairs are performed. 
    Herb Farnsworth
    President, Hometown Garage Inc
    ME: 9/10/2013
    Hello Herb,
    You do have a good customer service, and I was not at all dissatisfied with your shop in terms of this aspect, nor was I expecting the cheapest shop out there. I wanted to find a trustworthy shop and along the way support a local business, no questions asked mind you, willing to do whatever you suggested was necessary... until I saw the invoice and what it actually was that was included in the job. 
    In terms of your suggested parts source, I'm not familiar (we can all cite whatever we find supports our argument), but I believe it is not unreasonable to cite not an online source, but a RETAILER we're all familiar with - Autozone. 
    Your restaurant analogy does not quite compare - they charge me for the value added on top of a steak which INCLUDES labor and operations cost. Your business model is different and should not be used for comparison. You charge me for labor SEPARATELY (which is YOUR value added) and parts, and then let's say procuring the parts; on top of that - let's say warranting the parts beyond the manufacturer's warranty... but not at 160% markup, or 2.6 times your procurement cost. I went online and reviewed numerous other discussions online, on this particular issue. I just wanted to confirm what the common case is, because with my other (German auto) mechanic, his markup was about 20%, and my prior experience was about 30%. It seems that standard markup is in the range of 20% - 40%.
    I went one step further, and called Monroe (a chain i DIDN'T want to leave my money with) to see, ex post facto, what they'd ask for the same job, and the quote came at "just about $300".
    I don't care terribly much for the fact that I got rid of about $100 - $200 (I'm losing more just by sitting here writing this), as much as the fact that despite my best intentions, I had such terribly disappointing experience yet again with a car mechanic. It really is difficult finding a trustworthy shop. 
    P.S. You had my CR card number if you wanted to refund whatever charge you may have mistakenly made.
    Hometown Garage Inc 9/11/2013
    Good Morning Armin,
    We don't store credit card numbers, immediately shredded. I've mailed you a check for the $30 that should have been discounted for overlapping work.
    Herb Farnsworth
    - armin h.
  • A
    Foreign Auto Clinic
    I made an appointment beforehand for an oil change. When I brought my car  in, the technician is very courteous and said that it would take 30 minutes. To pass away the time, I decided to walk to the nearby Chestnut Hill Reservoir. Be sure to take this walk! The colonial houses along Wade street (right beside the auto location) is beautiful. The small green park area beside the reservoir is great and provides a surprisingly peaceful setting within Brighton.
    - YU Z.
  • A
    Theater Service Station
    We've been taking our cars to Mike at Theater Service Station for years.  He is a terrific mechanic and as honest as the day is long.  His prices are great, the quality of his work is great, and he never suggests unnecessary repairs.
    - CAROLE C.
  • A
    Bill's Auto Services
    Billy is awesome. He performed all the usual things, oil, fluids ect. The rear right tire was noisy and as it turned out it was a big issue. No problem for Billy. Car ran beautifully all the way.
    - James M.
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Auto Repair Shops in Winchester

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