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Old 04-25-2013, 08:09 PM   #573
Beastly Adventurer
Joined: Feb 2006
Oddometer: 1,588
It's all really flat rate time. They just calculate it as shop rate X book hours. They do that because shop rate is different for every shop. Because every shop is in a different area with different cost.

A shop located in a higher class area, will have to pay their techs more, and have higher rent/ shop cost. So the cost of doing business is higher and the prices are higher. But it's that for everyone in the area and the customers expect it.

Now a shop in the ghetto will have cheaper rent, the techs will work for less and the customers will want to pay less.

It's the same oil change, but different rates.

Flat rate is easy on cars. You can look up any one of the number of online resources like All Data and On Demand and they will have a complete service manual and rate times for all the work.
Nothing like that exist for motorcycles/quads. So if you are not a Honda dealer, and a Honda pulls in that needs work, you have to guess at how long it will take.
We had a Chinese quad that needed work pull in a few days ago. No manual on that, so we estimated high side at $420, but the work took less time then we figured, so the total bill was $350. It seemed like the right thing to do.

Unlike most cars, bikes/quads are heavy customized, so a flat rate is just a guide. If the book says it will take 1 hour to do a job, but the customer has added many aftermarket parts that have to be removed before the work can start, then the cost will be higher. It's not fair to the tech that they will be paid for a 1hr job, when it will take them 2 hours to do.

The same can be said about charging a customer 1hr for a 30 minute job. But you can't be sure it will take 30 minutes it may take 2 hours do to rusty bolts. In the end, it evens out. You loose money on some jobs, and make it up on others.

A friend took his truck into the dealer for a new water pump and thermostat. He was charged full book time for the water pump, and full book time for a thermostat replacement. The thermostat is housed inside the water pump. That was very dishonest and I don't do crap like that.
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