I went to Midas for a routine oil change, which I had been getting done with them for a couple of years now. Nothing major, it's just an oil change.
So imagine my surprise when I received a call from Midas stating that my car needed a new front Hub Assembly ASAP and that if I didn't get it done soon my wheels would fall off!
I will admit, I am not expert on cars, so needless to say I was worried. I was given a quote over the phone that was in excess of $650 (before taxes) for them to do the job.
Since it was so much money I decided to give my father a call to get his opinion, as he is a real 'car guy' and can usually tell if something seems fishy. Due to the relatively low number of kilometers on my car he thought it seemed a bit strange for the front hub assembly to be going already.
Later that day my Dad took my car to a friend who owns a repair shop for a second opinion. The owner of this shop took the car for a drive and said it felt great, but just to appease us he also jacked the car up so that he could take a good look at it and he said that everything was tight and in great shape. In short, absolutely no reason to do any work on that part of the car.
My Dad's friend (the one who works at the other shop) said that he'd seen several such cases in the last little while where people were coming to him for a second opinion about work that their mechanics said needed to be done that seemed suspicious. In all of these cases, he found nothing wrong with the parts that they were worried about.
I am writing this report because this seems to be an ongoing problem and one that will likely only get worse as the economy worsens. Shops need to make money to stay in business, and if they can't make it off of 'real' repairs, there is a greater chance that they will find things that they claim need work.
Car repairs are expensive enough when they're legit, and it is extremely disheartening to think that I nearly had to pay over $650 for a repair that wasn't even needed...it's pretty hard to say 'no' to a repair when the mechanic tells you that you're wheels will fall off if you don't get the work done!
My advice, if something seems fishy get a second opinion. It doesn't take long and it could save you a ton of cash.
Unhappy car owner