Big O's Automotive
2401 E 4th Ave, Anchorage, AK 99501
Anchorage Daily News Best Of Alaska Awards 2009, 10, 11 & 12
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Took my 10 year old, mechanically neglected car into Big O's on a Monday. I complained that the wiper didn't work it needed a tune up. They told me nothing was wrong with it; they just did an oil change and added fluids.
To fix the wiper, they quoted me $950 to fix the Control Module under the center shift console. When I picked it up, they again said that there was nothing wrong with it, no vibration at all. The guy helping me (manager?) confirmed that they took it for a test drive and found nothing wrong....So they charged me $198.25 for an oil change and fluid check!
Two days later, the check engine light came on. Knowing better, I did NOT take it to Big O's. I took it to a REAL mechanic, and complained of exactly the same things.
Here’s what the REAL mechanic identified, that I kinda knew about but didn’t think were a problem or that it could be fixed. Again, Big O’s didn’t notice ANY OF THIS.
Brakes were shot (the brakes pulsated like crazy!)
It was leaking in a couple places (my driveway looks terrible)
Serpentine belt was squeaking
It had trouble shifting gears
Fuel filter was bad
Here’s what they fixed:
The wiper was a FUSE ($20! Remember, Big O’s quoted me $950!)
Brakes & Rotors
Identified the leaks (engine and transmission)
Replaced the crankshaft seal
Flushed the rear differential twice (it was ORIGINAL, 10-year-old fluid and had metal shavings in it)
Replaced the transaxle fluid
My car runs like a top now. There’s a mechanic near Old Seward and Huffman that works out of a gas station. That’s the place to go.
A mechanic is supposed to diagnose and fix problems. Big O’s did neither. They charged me $198.25 for an oil change and fluid check that I could have got at Jiffy Lube for $50.
Oh. And when i called the manager today, he said "well, we didn't do anything to it" .... that was my point! And he said that, yes, it was a fuse, but the $950 part would "go out eventually."
This is the only shop I will take my vehicle. They are trustworthy people who are not out to just make a buck. They have always gave me honest information. At first before i got to know this company I use to shop around and have found every time that they were the cheapest. In one occasion they saved me 1000 on a repair that a different shop told me had to be done When actually it was not the problem. Go in there once and you will never go anywhere else again.