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Old 01-07-2014, 11:07 AM   #1
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Question: Do you tip a mechanic?

I was having a discussion with friends regarding tipping mechanics. I'm having a muffler put on this week, and was planning on tipping the guy who installs it. Assuming the work costs $80, I was going to throw an extra $10. Is this expected? Is a $10 tip not enough? Should I tip at all?

I know most people here are DIY guys/gals (I try to be when I can), but I was wondering what the general consensus is on tipping your mechanic. Is there a protocol?

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Old 01-07-2014, 11:20 AM   #2
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I'll be the first to chime in and say no. It's not a service industry, and even some of those shouldn't tipped. That said years ago my mother had a regular mechanic that worked on her cars over the years, every Christmas she'd buy a big bottle of some expensive whiskey that he liked and same thing around the 4th. No cash, and he took good extra care of her. I do the same thing if friends help me out, but not for the average mechanic.

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Old 01-07-2014, 11:27 AM   #3
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If it's close to quitting time give him a beer.

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Old 01-07-2014, 11:29 AM   #4
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If they are giving you a deal or considerably less than other shops I personally would throw some of the savings their way. Who knows next time a small/ easier job may be a freebee. I always try to take care of those who try to take care of me.
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Old 01-07-2014, 11:47 AM   #5
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After bending wrenches for 35+ years I can tell you tips are greatly appreciated especially if he works for the shop.If he works for them he probably doesnt get paid that well and would appreciate any gesture of gratitude.Even buying his lunch, a bottle of his favorite or a few bucks can go a long way as to how you and your car are taken care of.
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Old 01-07-2014, 11:52 AM   #6
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I've been known to stop by a shop after I felt that someone went way beyond what I expected, either by heavily discounting the labor involved on a repair or otherwise saving me a ton of money, and given the mechanic who worked on my car a coupon for a free steak dinner at Ponderosa. I've done that a few times but it's not a regular practice for me.
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:04 PM   #7
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I do most all my own work but if for some reason I need something done and I get excellent service I will slip them a $10 or $20 and tell them to have lunch on me.
I stopped trying to give beer as the last couple of times I was told by the people that they were morman and did not drink. I could tell they felt awkward and I did too.
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:09 PM   #8
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Thanks for the replies guys! I really do appreciate it.
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:12 PM   #9
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do your own work.
if its something you cant do get buddies. buddies are dumb and work for pizza and beer.
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Old 01-07-2014, 12:39 PM   #10
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Thumbs up

I give my guys a bottle of crown every Christmas.They are long time friends & take good care of both my rides
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Old 01-07-2014, 03:33 PM   #11
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My wife tips me all the time!
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Old 01-07-2014, 10:17 PM   #12
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I do most of the work myself but I do tip them when I bring one of our vehicles in for service. Our local shop does a great job and usually fits me in on short notice.
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Old 01-09-2014, 09:44 AM   #13
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The only mechanics that I've ever 'tipped' include:

1) The father of one of my daughter's friends (who is ASE certified), who stood with me in the rain to troubleshoot an electrical demon in my wife's old car, came back a 2nd time for more troubleshooting, got us an new ECU at cost, AND installed it all after hours. When I cut him the check for the new ECU, I 'accidentally' wrote it for $100 more than necessary.

and

2) My niece's fiancee (& former Honda mechanic), who helped me replace the starter, compressor, and a few other things on my wife's Honda. In lieu of cash (which he wouldn't accept), we made sure that their 2 sons got a little 'extra' at Christmas
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Old 01-09-2014, 09:53 AM   #14
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if the work is something you can't do yourself, and it's beyond asking some buddies to help out.. sure you can throw a mechanic a couple bucks. that's never something that goes unnoticed, and if you're trying to build a rapport with a local mechanic - that won't hurt.

that's not to say that you should tip them every time, or that they should expect that every time. but it's a nice appreciative gesture...

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Old 01-09-2014, 09:57 AM   #15
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service industry? lady who cuts my hair is...the guy who fixes my $40k Jeep isn't?

if you can afford it...and he/she is worth it...drop 15% in their hand for a service performed...i do...it ensures the gal in my case takes very good care of my investment...
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Old 01-09-2014, 10:21 AM   #16
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IMO it depends....when I take in the JK's to the dealer or the Chrysler 300 to the dealer, there is no tip...first of all because I never see the mechanic and second I am not totally comfortable since IDK who may work on it this time or next time.

The "Tire shop" I use, is also a full service garage...and since the TJ is way past warranty, and it generally gets me or some buddies to work on it, if there is something that needs done I take it to this shop.

And there is ONE mechanic there that works on my vehicles, the shop knows it, and the mechanic knows it. He did rear seals and brakes and bearings on the TJ, repaired a broken shock mount on a Sat afternoon about 5pm, and replaced front axle u-joints and bearings.

I purchased my Duratracs and wheels from them for the TJ, and before that I purchased my last set of BFGs from them. And also purchased rotation balance and "lifetime road hazard warranty" for every vehicle from them as well....so yeah they know me. For the last 4 years.

What that means is the shop sees me frequently, since rotation and balance is "free" we take them in every time the oil is changed. The mechanic is probably making as much as the store since he usually gets "something" each time we are there.

The advantage, my wife pulled in there one day with a TPS light on in the JK,at 5 min to closing..she went inside, told them that, "my husband brings the Jeeps here all the time, can you just take a look?"
They asked her name, went back to the shop, came back out asked her to have a seat, while they looked at it.

At 15min after 6 she went to the desk as she was the only one left and most of the other cars had been picked up, it was obvious they were getting ready to close.

The guy at the counter said there was a puncture in the sidewall, he (the mechanic) should be almost done with it. My wife asked if it was being fixed, and the manager said no it is being replaced. Under the road hazard warranty, my wife asked the cost and was told there was no charge. He continued with, "I asked Jack (the mechanic) if he would take the time to look at it since it was so late, and he said no problem..and we had the tire in stock so we replaced it."

About that time the mechanic came in the front door Jeep was outside running waiting for her. They told her to have a Merry Christmas. She came home amazed, I was pleasantly surprised, but also glad that my building of the relationship with this one shop that is 2 miles from my house, and my wife was comfortable with "paid off".
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:14 PM   #17
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No, no, and no!!!!!!!
These Dealerships today are charging about $100.00 per hour for service repairs, "this obviously will vary somewhat by logistics".
Most of the technicians work on a 50/50 commission. So if they meet the flat rates, they are making $50.00 per hour. That equates to over $100,000 a year!
They don't need to be tipped..........
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:22 PM   #18
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I have been in auto repair many years, ran shops (company owned) for 20+ years and tipping the mechanic is rare and greatly appreciated. Tipping will get you a best friend that knows how to fix your car, will get you in when they are packed, and take extra care to get the best price on parts and be sure its done right the first time. I think its a great idea.... and you would be the exception!
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Old 01-09-2014, 05:39 PM   #19
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^^ well said a kind gesture that goes a long way!
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Old 01-14-2014, 05:10 PM   #20
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Having been one in high school, I always tip the grunts that bust tires, shovel grease and dirt, sweep the shop, wash parts and do much of the dirty work for min wage.
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Old 01-14-2014, 09:11 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OhioLugg View Post
I have been in auto repair many years, ran shops (company owned) for 20+ years and tipping the mechanic is rare and greatly appreciated. Tipping will get you a best friend that knows how to fix your car, will get you in when they are packed, and take extra care to get the best price on parts and be sure its done right the first time. I think its a great idea.... and you would be the exception!
I agree.... Take care of your mechanic and he will take care of you!
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Old 01-14-2014, 10:06 PM   #22
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Picked my Jeep up today after getting the heater core replaced. Brought a dozen doughnuts in for the service department. I imagine they take the brunt of a lot of people's frustration. They didn't design, build, market, or sell the vehicle. They also are not getting the $100 an hr. The customer service was excellent. For that I felt they deserved some recognition. I have no problem doing a little extra for someone if they did a little extra for me. That little extra doesn't always have to be cash.

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