Matt's Equipment Repair



Tune ups --- The Industry's Dirty Little Secret

Posted by on October 29, 2015 at 4:45 PM

I have always struggled with what people are charged for tune ups, and this is one of the industries biggest rip offs.  First let me define a tune up, a tune up is regular maintance done to a machine, it is not fixing any kind of problem.  There are many people who like their stuff kept in top shape, and this is good.  So they bring their equipment to a shop and get ripped off.  I have worked at numerous shops, some are worse than others, but I have never been happy with how much is charged.  Most shops charge 45 minutes to an hour in labor for a tune up on a chain saw, trimmer, or walk behind mower, and how long does it take to do one?  Usually 10 to 15 miutes.  So this looks good as a mechanic, you can bill out a lot more time than it takes.  I'm ok with the time being a little high, after doing the same thing for aver a decade you get pretty fast, so you shouldn't have to charge less because you are good at your job, but an hour for 10 minutes worth of work is extreme.

For most equipment, a tune up is simply replacing filters and plugs, greasing, and sharpening.  Sometimes there are some adjustments, but this is all very quick.  Many people show up saying that the machine "just needs a tune up" then the start listing off all of it's problems.  This is not a tune up, a lot of times you will cover all of the tune up stuff in the process of fixing it, but that is repairing something.  

So really the point of this is that I am happy that I no longer have to grossly over charge people for tune ups any more.  Most should be billed out as 20 to 30 minute jobs, as that is all that they really are.

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