What’s your favourite… Garage?

johnboy 12 February 2007 46

So, being the start of the new week it’s time to pool our collective knowledge and debate the merits of something. Last week was gyms, this week let’s discuss garages.

Where, in your experience is the best place to get a car serviced?

What's Your Opinion?

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46 Responses to What’s your favourite… Garage?
Dome Dome 7:43 am 15 Feb 07

Canberra Toyota – a five week wait for a $1.50 part.

Danman Danman 7:57 am 14 Feb 07

Genie – Your car your call – ill repeat what I said above – just relaying my experiences – not yours.

Maybe its ready to snap – maybe its not – maybe they said it isn’t ready to snap even though it is – and they end up gaining – who knows – if a mechanic told me mine was on the way out – I would replace it quick smart – being mechanically minded as I am – I am pretty good with a workshop manual and anything thats external to the block. to the short engine.

Hasdrubahl Hasdrubahl 7:49 am 14 Feb 07

Timing belt on my car should be changed every 120,000 kms. Cost me a lot, they had to remove the front end of the car just to get at it.

Genie Genie 10:19 pm 13 Feb 07

I think you guys are all missing the point i made. The mechanic TOLD me my timing belt was ready to snap – 5 mechanics later over 3 years, THERES NOTHING WRONG WITH IT. IT DOESN’T NEED REPLACING. I get scammed EVERY time i get my car serviced and told it needs work done to it when nothing it wrong – so far it hasn’t mattered where ive taken my car.

cranky cranky 8:26 pm 13 Feb 07

Do yourself a favour and find out if your engine is an ‘interference’ type or not. What this means is if the belt breaks and the valve gear stops, do the pistons smack the open valves as they (the pistons) keep going for a second or two. The diference, as noted above, is probably $1-2,000.
Certainly peace of mind or otherwise, and may affect your maintenance spend.

Danman Danman 3:05 pm 13 Feb 07

Genie – just relaying my experiences – not yours.

bonfire bonfire 2:12 pm 13 Feb 07

idiots who skimp on mechanical repairs reap what they sow.

timing belts etc shoudl be changed in accordance with manufacturers recommendations.

so genie, your 1300 saving may cost you a new engine.

basic maintenance at home such as fluid changes on at least a six-monthly basis are simple and can save you big dollars over the life of your car.

in my experience – mobile anyone (auto sparks, mechanics etc) are just time wasters.

as are backyarders.

and if you have a bad experience with a mechanic – tell him why, and why you wont go back.

a good indicator of pending probs is if you cant actually speak to the mechanic and have to interface through a front office. rarely do they write down exactly what your problem is. resulting in extra work (which you pay for) and repeat visits.

smaller shops tend to give better service than any franchise/chain. usually at better prices.

Genie Genie 1:40 pm 13 Feb 07

Danman –

The mechanic told me my belt would snap within the next 1000k’s or so… i’ve done almost 25,000k’s since. Plus other mechanics have told me there is nothing wrong with it. Hence the savings of $1300.

When your female and it comes to cars.. I always getting a second opinion if anything ‘costly’ needs replacing. So far everytime my ‘second opinion’ (a mate whose a mechanic) told me i was being scammed and heavily over quoted. Especially since the belt that needed replacing should only cost about $200. Not $1300.

ant ant 12:36 pm 13 Feb 07

The people up the end of Lonsdale St, opposite Haig Park, seem to do a good job and have a good attitude. They’re at the servo with the big auto carwash, can’t remember what flavour of petrol they have.
Echo the sentiments about Nat Cap at Belconnen. Avoid.

Spitfire3 Spitfire3 11:29 am 13 Feb 07

I recommend Chris Hedges Mechanical in Fyshwick. He’s a great guy, very honest, reliable and helpful and does a good job with no BS. I’ve been going to him for years now and will continue to do so (when you find a good mechanic…)

Indi, I think he also specialises (or used to) in Alfa Romeos and other european cars.

Danman Danman 10:43 am 13 Feb 07

I was also quoted 3 years ago that a belt in my car needed to be replaced as it was in risk of snapping – still going strong. Saved myself $1300

On personal experience – I would not be skimping in this area – could cost a lot more.

Timing belt on suzuki – ~$80
Labour to fit – ~$120

Cost of timing belt snapping and bending valves – damaging pistons – ruining valve guides – priceless.

CouldExpire CouldExpire 10:26 am 13 Feb 07

Hey Indi, I know Roger Keft Auto Repairs started off years and years ago specialising in Renaults and other european cars etc so may be worth looking him up and having a chat to them.

CouldExpire CouldExpire 10:25 am 13 Feb 07

I recommend –


Great service always!

Indi Indi 9:24 am 13 Feb 07

anyone know a reliable mechanic who specialises in Alfa Romeo’s?

Ralph Ralph 8:06 am 13 Feb 07

Another one here for Subaroo in Mitchell.

When I used to own a Subaru it was plagued by wheel bearing problems. These guys were the only ones who fixed both of them properly (after replacement bearings done by the dealer kept failing).

johnboy johnboy 11:46 pm 12 Feb 07


As there was no warning we were going to do this and the comments have almost entirely come from existing users I’m not too worried.

Genie Genie 11:38 pm 12 Feb 07

I would have to say to avoid Lube Mobile (especially if your female), i like the convience of having someone fix my car in my driveway – however every time i get charged a fortune for stuff that isnt even wrong with my car! One average my $200 service costs me $500 – even when i ask for no further work to be done.

I have have my car serviced 3 times with Lube Mobile, everytime i have been quoted for repairs reaching almost the $2000 mark. Never have i agreed to getting that stuff fixed – and yet its never been the same thing twice. Only a month ago i was told i needed 4 new tires and my breaks needed to be completely replaced urgently, i was told my car was unroadworthy – quote $2500 – went to a tire shop, my tires are good for about another 10,000k’s, I can wait another month or 2. Got breaks checked at a break shop – nothing wrong with them, just a little bit dirty!

I was also quoted 3 years ago that a belt in my car needed to be replaced as it was in risk of snapping – still going strong. Saved myself $1300.

I personally recommend finding a mechanic friend and offering them a case of beer to maintain your car – and then pay for parts.

Sammy Sammy 10:32 pm 12 Feb 07

resulted in a bit of advertising disguised as comment

Yeah, I actually work for Capital Subaru and i’m sick and tired of customers interrupting me, so i’m posting negative reviews.

el el 9:57 pm 12 Feb 07

PS – I have no affiliation with either company aside from being a very satisfied customer.

el el 9:56 pm 12 Feb 07

For my Holden V8, I have recently had good experiences with Gen-Tech in Mitchell (they specialise in GenIII/IV V8s and also have a lot of experience with the old 5.0L engine.) They do (proper) auto gearbox servicing, too. Marcus and his boys are very, very thorough.


For tuning type stuff, and back when I was frigging around with carbied engines Precision Automotive (also in Mitchell) were always fantastic to deal with. Ken is truly a ‘guru’ of the industry, AFAIC.


The rest of the time I handle routine servicing on my driveway.

Now, can someone recommend a good workshop in Canberra for getting diff work done?

CBR Tweets

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