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Did I get Hosed?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by Az Gardener, May 12, 2008.

  1. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    My guys hit a brass in ground light fixture last Friday AM with my relatively new 36" Ferris. took it into the dealer and I went today to pick it up. Had to replace the spindle and belt and went ahead and "tuned it up" plugs, filters, sharpen blades, oil change. $ 627.00 ;) Between that and filling up the dump truck with 4.49 diesel it was a very expensive afternoon. Was I hosed? or is this about right. Its the only larger mower I have and if this is typical it may be the last. It doesn't save me that much time.
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Sorry to make you feel worse, But.....You got RIPPED !!! :dizzy:

    Even if they charged $100 per hour you got hosed....A one arm man could do that job in less than 2 hours, I'll bet places like this don't see the same customer twice.

    ALWAYS get a estimate before any work is performed, If I see a job getting high I will call the customer before slapping them with bill like you got.

    For shame for shame.....
  3. mcambrose

    mcambrose LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 518

    Not familiar with a Ferris, but usually a spindle is around $60-90. It should take about an hour to change. I would guess a tune up would be $100-$125. I would think that $325 would be reasonable. Yes, I think you were taken advantage of. Did you get a breakdown for labor hours and parts. Checks with the factory to see if they are reasonable. THey usually have a standard time for each repair. I would guess $75-$90/hr for shop charge.
  4. fixer67

    fixer67 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,098

    This is kind of odd to be reading this thread. This man today brought his machine into the shop and told me another shop told him it would cost him $1800 to fix the damage. First off the damage was not all that bad and the damaged parts may in fact not be damaged to the point of replacing but only reworking. Even if I did have to replace the parts in question the cost of parts is less than $400 and would take less than one hour to replace. It makes me sick to hear things like this. It only takes one bad shop to make all shops look bad.
    And yes you got hosed by a 3" fire hose, lucky you did not drown
  5. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    75 per m/h 4.5 hrs for the entire job, 175 for the spindle. The other parts seemed reasonable. I do a fair amount of business with this dealer but at a different branch. I will check with them tomorrow. Glad to hear I still have some grasp of what reasonable costs are. Hard to tell when costs of everything goes up by the minute. Guess I need to fall in line and start raising my prices too.
  6. newz7151

    newz7151 LawnSite Silver Member
    from Tejas
    Messages: 2,419

    You're right, the factory does have "warranty repair guides" , however, these guides are usually fabricated at the factory by somebody replacing a part on a machine fresh off the line with no use, meaning no worn parts, no parts rusted on from use, no caked on dirt and grass and no other stuff that a dealer mechanic normally finds on a field used mower. Some of the times are taken from dealer repairs and then averaged, however, when the factory goes through and cherry picks the absolute lowest ones and averages them, you come out with the lowest time, instead of the ones that deal with having to clean all the crap off the mower and freeing the rusted up bolts. This is another one of the reasons that you are starting to see mower dealers shop labor rates climbing into the $75-$90/hr range, we're trying to get paid what the job actually takes versus what the manufacturer in their sanitary environment THINKS it takes.
  7. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    The mower is almost new probably less than 200 hours the spindle is greenish but no build up at all. I went to my local branch today and they said the standard time for service was 2.25 hrs to change 2 plugs and drain and replace 2 qts of oil, an air filter and fuel filter? :confused: I would have thought a professional would have been faster. They said they thought the spindle replacement time could possibly be a little high but I would need to talk to the mechanic who did the work.
  8. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029


    Bet ya don't let um do that again....;)
  9. sawman65

    sawman65 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 754

    just go ahead and bend over. just never take ANYTHING there again. if you have to get an estimate

    S DIAMOND LawnSite Member
    from South
    Messages: 108

    Both Briggs and Honda "claim" they base times on national averages of select shops. Between 100 to 500 markets.

    The "guide" is based on two things.

    1) The item being worked on is right in front of you on your bench and the tools required for the job are within your physical reach. This is stated in the time analysis guides.

    2) This does not include removal and replacement of certain Items. Example, engine had to be removed to get to some other part. Another time count etc.

    AZ, you are right, a professional mechanic CAN (and does) certain jobs well under the time you are billed for, especially if it is a familiar unit and a similar routine. To most shops, time is money, and if that mechanic finishes in 30 minutes and you are billed for the "average" 2.25 hours, he or she is on to the next item making the shop more money. This is the unfortunate fact of life. However, not all shops are this way.

    In this case, if quoted wrong and the unexpected happens, then the mechanic loses the shop money, if he underestimates.

    This I can promise you. The mechanic is not making $75-$120 an hour, the shop is. In some cases they are paid on performance (how many) not hourly (or a combination.) Good luck.:walking:

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