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service question
Posted by: bazookaman
Date: June 07, 2006 07:33AM
If you take a computer, or a vehicle or an appliance in for repair and it takes the service facility a VERY long time to diagnose the problem, but only a few minutes to fix it, what is normally charged? Do you get charged for 12 hours of test time? How does that work?



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Re: service question
Posted by: BigGuynRusty
Date: June 07, 2006 08:47AM
Depends, really.
It is up to the shop on whether they charge a flat fee for diagnostics.
Also the type of shop, electronic shops usually charge a flat minimum fee, and if the repair falls under that minimum level, that is all you get charged.
Taking a long time to diagnose a problem points to a bad shop.
Also, you gave several diverse examples, where the laws vary, also laws vary by state.

BGnR
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Re: service question
Posted by: bazookaman
Date: June 07, 2006 10:53AM
I'm referring to auto shops. But it occurred to me that it could happen with anything.



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Re: service question
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: June 07, 2006 11:05AM
YMMV. Usually auto shops will not admit to extensive diagnostic time, but you will end up with a lot of parts replaced while they 'easter egg' the problem (continually replace parts while trying to find the 'one part' that is bad). If you look at most factory shop manuals diagnostic flow charts, you will see stuff like this:
Measure voltage at connector XYZ
If voltage is below 10 volts, replaced whatchamajigger #21.
After replacement, check voltage at connector QZR.
If voltage is above 99 volts, replace whossamagiggle #22.

And so it goes.

that's why I always demand to see the parts that they 'replaced'. Lots of unethical shops will happily easter egg, then go back through the chain and 'un replace' parts. The end result is you pay for a part that you didn't get.
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