In-house machine shops are rarely found in most auto repair shops. The special equipment in an automotive shop with an in-house machine shop allows for specialized cuts, sanding, drilling, grinding, knurling (cut in patterns to allow for a better grip) and welding parts to customize or repair them. In-house machine shops are also used for the manufacture of parts in metal or plastic.
Rebuilding Major Parts
For vehicles, machine shops are used to modify vehicle parts for repair, build custom add-ons or to improve performance by fine turning a part. They are used on parts for brakes, clutches, transmissions, drive lines, and engines. Carsdirect.com points out another option machine shops can handle – modifying your vehicle to install a lower-mileage engine.
The same reasoning applies to rebuilt transmissions. Transmission rebuilds are a major service in most shops with in-house machinery.
Replacing and Upgrading Parts and Systems
Machine shops can also replace many parts on a vehicle with a stronger one to improve performance such as replacing manufacturer torque converters with more powerful ones that improve transmission resilience and help improve fuel economy.
With manual shifting comes clutch repair, particularly for drivers learning to use a clutch.
Adjustable top strut mounts and chassis braces that replace rubber mounts and improve alignment.
Stiffer motor mounts to improve engine response and precision handling
Less restrictive cold air intake to boost engine efficiency at higher speeds
Finding an automotive repair shop with an in-house machine shop shows that the shop is dedicated to providing the best auto service possible.
Auto repair costs at a shop are basically comprised of labor and parts. Flat rate labor guides estimate labor time down to the tenth of an hour. For my example, if a starter for a specific vehicle pays 1.2 hours to change, the labor cost will be determined by multiplying the time by the shops labor rate, lets say the shops labor rate is $90.00 per flat rate hour (1.2 x $90.00=$108.00). Also automotive repair shop labor rates vary at each shop and from city to city. Labor time does NOT take in to consideration the requirement for special tools, experience or lack of.
Flat Rate or Actual Time
If the actual time it takes to repair the vehicle is LESS or MORE than the estimated flat rate time, the customer still pays the flat rate amount. More experienced auto technicians and techs with time saving tools can most of the time beat the flat rate time (AKA book time). The technician, if paid by flat rate has an incentive to do the job fast and correctly. Also keep in mind that a flat rate technician does not get paid time and a half for over-time, or for standing around waiting for work or parts. Tools with exception of larger shop equipment items are usually the responsibility of each mechanic to purchase individually.
Yes, some money may be saved by shopping around and buying the parts directly, but most shops won’t install parts provided by the customer. Also as far as the warranty goes, if a part fails that the facility provides, the shop will be responsible during the warranty period. Tips for a good auto repair shop experience.
Have a written estimate on large repairs.
Test drive vehicle before paying if possible.
Automotive detailing can be one of the most important jobs at vehicle dealerships or detailing shops. Whether a detailer is preparing the vehicle for a sales display or getting it ready for its new owner, it’s sometimes that first impression of the vehicle that makes automotive detailing so significant.
Good automotive detailers will know the areas on vehicles that a bad detailer can miss. No one wants to buy a used vehicle, no matter what the performance quality, if it hasn’t been detailed properly.
Tobacco or smoking in a vehicle are no longer challenges for the good automotive detailer. Automotive detailing products are important. Automotive detailing product salespeople who promote their products and claim they are the best visit many dealerships. Beyond what products auto detailers are using, a customer should look at the detail shop or detail area. Are the products organized, or are the detailers running back and forth, sharing products, or worse, leaving the detail area looking for their equipment? Check them out for cleanliness and accessibility of the automotive detailing items they use-are they nearby?
A good automotive detailer will use tools such as small brushes with soft bristles for vent cleaning. Detailing tools that have small rubber tips are good for cleaning dirt out of seams and trim. Bottles of cleaners should also be color-coded for automotive detailing use. The color-coding process has eliminated the mistakes sometimes made in the automotive detailing business.
Some automotive detailing shops even offer services that will check your wiper blades and other viewable parts that can easily be replaced by a detailer at a lower cost than a mechanic or technician.
A big job for the automotive detailer is new vehicle preparation. If a dealer sells new vehicles, as they are shipped in, they are inevitably full of dust, debris and, road wear from the shipping process. Not only is the automotive detailer responsible for cleaning the new vehicle, most car dealerships will provide them with a checklist of other items to check for operation. If your detailing company or dealership offers this, it may save you dollars. Automotive detailing takes a lot if care. If chosen right, the good automotive detailer can make all the difference in that new, used, or customer vehicle.
Many of us are do it yourselfers when it comes to working on our cars and the reason many of us do it is to save money on the cost of labor and high priced parts that repair chops charge. I know when I was a teenager my brother and I were working on our old muscle cars all the time. Now cars have gotten a little more complicated but finding discount auto parts is easier than ever thanks to the internet. There are so many sources from which to find parts that it doesn’t matter what type of vehicle you have you will probably be able to find the parts you need at a good price. From online parts houses to eBay the internet has definitely made parts shopping a lot easier and a lot cheaper.
You will find millions of parts for any make and model online. It may take a little searching if you truly have something rare but in most cases you can simply put in the type of car and the part you are looking for in a search box and get multiple pages of results from your favorite search engine. With the internet finding replacement parts and aftermarket items for almost any vehicle has been made easy. Just for curiosity I typed in GTX Pistol Grip shifter which is what came on one of my favorite Chrysler muscle cars and there were numerous choices. Just remember that the rarer the part the more you can expect to pay, you will find great bargains on normal cars but the price for parts on rare cars will be determined by the market.
In most cases even the recyclers online will offer guarantees and warranties so you don’t have to be afraid to order online.