It's a thankless job. You would think that someone can make a good living being an honest mechanic because everyone thinks they are out to rip you off. In reality very few mechanics are rip off artists and the rip off artists tend to gravitate towards dealerships. Normally when a bill is more than you expected it's because some expensive piece of plastic broke during the repair or some bolt was so rusted it broke and needed to be drilled and tapped out. These are a part of the daily grind of being a mechanic but whether warranted or not the blame falls on the mechanic and if they want to pull a good commission they either cover it up and let the car come back or they charge you or just deal with it and take the loss. So you either think they are incompetent or a rip off artist. The third option means the mechanic loses and that's the category I always fell into. So that means I may be getting paid $25+ per hour but I don't make enough money for the job to seem worth the troubles and headaches since that $25 per hour is commission based on hours of labor charged. I am an ASE master technician and I could make the same money flipping burgers than being a mechanic and flipping burgers is a whole lot less stressful. So that is the reason so many good mechanics are retiring or moving on to something else and that leaves a lot of untrained and inexperienced mechanics who make the profession look bad with their incorrect diagnosis causing you major headaches and for the industry it makes us look like rip off artists because these parts can't be returned since they have been installed and now you need to buy the right part. Also to add insult to injury guys like me who are already losing due to our honesty and desire to win your approval are called in to diagnose and repair the wrongly guessed repair by the lesser quality technician.
The key to doing the job right is taking the time to perform checks to prove what is actually wrong with your car. The problem with that is people hate paying diagnostics fees. They want you to tell them what is wrong with your car for free so you can shop around for the lowest price without having to pay for the labor it took to come to this conclusion. That takes time and skill to be right 99% of the time. If reward does not relate to the trouble of being a mechanic than the best and the brightest tend to check out of the profession or just go to a dealer and rack up all the bonus hours on stuff people don't need and scam the warranty work.
Since being a mechanic is looked down upon as a job for H.S. dropouts or losers even though you need to know as much as an engineer and 2 years of schooling just gives you the basics and it takes another 3-5 years on the job to really master it, it has no redeeming qualities.
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