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Discussion Starter #1
Ouch!

Took my 03 Cooper S in to a private garage (ex-BMW guys) for 2 new front tyres, new wiper blades, MOT and breather hose replacement. Some how the final bill has come to a tenner short of £700!!!

Apparently when it went for wheel alignment (badly worn inner edge on current front tyres) some sort of arm??? That needs to be loosened for the wheel alignment to be done had seized (car has only done just over 40,000 miles) so had to be replaced which is apparently £150 for the part.

I’ll have to wait to see the final bill. I know tyres were £115 each (so 230 in total), I also know that MOT is £53 and that this part I needed was £150. So quite interesting as to where this other almost £300 came from.

I would probably have got cheaper going direct to BMW.
 

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Mini Youngster
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Ouch!

Took my 03 Cooper S in to a private garage (ex-BMW guys) for 2 new front tyres, new wiper blades, MOT and breather hose replacement. Some how the final bill has come to a tenner short of £700!!!

Apparently when it went for wheel alignment (badly worn inner edge on current front tyres) some sort of arm??? That needs to be loosened for the wheel alignment to be done had seized (car has only done just over 40,000 miles) so had to be replaced which is apparently £150 for the part.

I’ll have to wait to see the final bill. I know tyres were £115 each (so 230 in total), I also know that MOT is £53 and that this part I needed was £150. So quite interesting as to where this other almost £300 came from.

I would probably have got cheaper going direct to BMW.
what the hell! I can understand the MOT fee and the tyre price but the other part for the alignment is a bit strange.

I was under the impression they loosened some bolts to do the alignment and then retightened them, when i was getting an alignment done it took a bit longer because one of the bolts was stuck but they still did it, sounds a bit rediculous to me.

Definately investigate this further!!

Oh and btw, I got my alignment done at 50000 miles and one had never been done before.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I've requested they put the part in the boot so I can investigate it further. Just sounded bloody expensive and I haven't even had a service and the car felt mechanically fine before I took it in. It's one of those expenses you don't account for (unlike a service or tyres in general). So I'm a bit peed off! Oh well.
 

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Mini Youngster
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Im not sure exactly what an alignment entails or what the part could have been, but even with the part cost added on it just doesnt add up!

I service the car myself though so dont know what is normally charged for such a thing.
 

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4 wheel alignment,
breather pipe
wiper blades
I would guess fiting of tyres,labour for replacement siezed item,fitting of the breather,VAT
I think the dealer price for the alignment is £350 alone -then £100 per hour for labour .
How can you have been stung without seeing the final bill ?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I've got the final bill and know what has been done but not a full breakdown yet.

I'm sure when I've taken my cars to ATS Euromaster for example the 4-wheel alignment is like £40!?
 

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Mini Youngster
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I've got the final bill and know what has been done but not a full breakdown yet.

I'm sure when I've taken my cars to ATS Euromaster for example the 4-wheel alignment is like £40!?
It depends how it is done, the dealers have a more accurate way of doing the alignment from what im aware of, some electronic thing.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It depends how it is done, the dealers have a more accurate way of doing the alignment from what im aware of, some electronic thing.

£350 for what does essentially the same job? How funny. I'll let you guys know what happens when I get my car later on this evening. I've had the car since March and done roughly 4,000 miles in it. Already cost me a pair of front brake pads (old ones were patent parts and were squeeking) and £700 on what is not even a service. And I thought running an Evo was out of the question! :puzzled:lol :p
 

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hey dude just read through this little lot i work for ats and i own a mcs to do the allignment takes about 20 mins to bolts to undo and turn the track rod ends then tighten up the bolts end of story and its £29.99 inc vat
 

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I've got the final bill and know what has been done but not a full breakdown yet.

I'm sure when I've taken my cars to ATS Euromaster for example the 4-wheel alignment is like £40!?
according to mini, wheel alignment can only be done at a mini/bmw garage because of the way it is constructed or something?? :S

oh and you can only have all 4 done!:mad:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Right, got the breakdown. I guess having it in black and white with the work it's not so bad...

Parts:

Pirelli 205/45/vr17 x 2 = 230
Breather valve = 9.37
Breather hose = 7.19
Wiper blade = 9.79
Wiper blade = 7.58
Rear wiper blade = 6.81
Track rod arm = 82.56
Rubber boot = 11.15

Labour:

Replace breather valve, hose, fit both tyres and replace blades = 50
Carry out MOT = 53.10
Replace OSF track rod arm and boot = 50
4-wheel alignment = 75

Sub total: 592.55
Vat: 94.42
Total: 686.97

No MOT adverseries & some graphic print-out for the wheel alignment.
 

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I can not understand what the fuss was about

Yes things could have been cheaper
Tyres could have been done at a tyre shop by shopping around for the best price and tracking / wheel alignment at the same time.
Wiper blades could have been done by yourself

Garages have to make a profit

Looks to me like the labour rate was pretty good.
 

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Ok seeing that now it adds up ok and i now understand what had to be changed for the alignment.

Must have been a shock though lol!!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I can not understand what the fuss was about

Yes things could have been cheaper
Tyres could have been done at a tyre shop by shopping around for the best price and tracking / wheel alignment at the same time.
Wiper blades could have been done by yourself

Garages have to make a profit

Looks to me like the labour rate was pretty good.
Tyres weren't that expensive I didn't think and they have a tyre fitting machine hence why labour etc was all included in 1 hour or under with the breather hose, wipers etc. Also if you look at it like that I didn't actually pay labour for the wiper blades.

It's just when a 40k miler Mini goes in for an MOT (knowing you need 2 front tyres done) you don't generally expect a 700 quid bill!
 

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I think the wheel alignment was a bit steep, had mine done 2 weeks ago for £50 and that was with the latest electronic machine and it took about an hour and a half!!
 

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w' all the toys..
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Regardless of the mileage it's a 5 year old car, of course it's not going to be maintenance free - looks like you got a good deal to me..

Labour was very reasonable as was the price of the parts - £115.00 per tyre seems to be the going rate for run-flats at the moment (much better than the £160.00 of a couple years ago).

Wheel alignment at the dealership costs aprox £240.00, which I think is a little OTT - Protyre for instance charge £80.00 - same electronic equipment, don't believe the only BMW can do it story, just not true.

The £50.00 fee for a 90 minute wheel alignment definitely sounds way off - the garage would certainly have made a loss doing this job if you consider what the overheads are.

Maybe change the wiper blades yourself next time - seems odd that you are moaning about having to spend money on the car yet you let the garage do one of the most basic tasks that any owner should be able to deal with..
 

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Did they put the new tyres on the front? :eek:

There is all sorts of advice that consistently says the new rubber should always go on the back......and I would hope a professional garage would do this automatically

Ian
 

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you'd be amazed at the size of some of the bills our customers get(i work in a small independant garage with a labour rate of £45 per hour).
looking at your bill, I'd say the only excessive charge was for fitting the tyres, as this is usually included in the over inflated (geddit?) price of the tyres.
nobody like expensive repair bills, but at the end of the day, we can't fix your cars for free!!!
 

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I think the worst part is fitting a new track rod end because it had seized. A little bit of heat and a big spanner would see it freed of. If the part was worn out and there was play in it then it should be replaced.

I cant see how people can leave dealerships and set up on their own, charge the same amount and call themselves experts. They obviously have no engineering knowledge other than replacing everything and just think it is easy money.

Also didnt realised VAT had to be charged on top of the MOT price.

When it comes to replacing the exhaust backbox will they replave the whole lot because the bolts are rusty?
 
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